• William T. Howe Ph.D.

February 10, 2021

Daily Reading: Leviticus 26-27

Leviticus 26:3

If ye walk in my statutes, and keep my commandments, and do them;

Maher-shalal-hash-baz is the longest word in the Bible. But, to me it is not the biggest word of the Bible. Ask 100 preachers, "What is the biggest word in the Bible to you?" and you will probably receive 100 different words. Many words are mighty big, no doubt. Words like Jesus, love, grace, and mercy may lead the list of big words. Big words have big meanings. To me though, the biggest word with the biggest meaning is the word "If". This small word in letters but big in real life results is used 1420 times in Scripture and is used more times in the book of Leviticus than any other book, 157 times.

If makes the difference in blessings and cursings (notice the next few verses of Leviticus 26). "If" makes the difference in receiving rewards in Heaven or experiencing the loss of rewards. "If" makes the difference in holiness and being unholy, righteousness or unrighteous, spiritual or carnal. Perhaps the biggest difference the word "if" makes is the difference between obtaining eternal life or eternal death. That is how big the word is.

God would not use the word "if" if there was no way to accomplish that which is set forth concerning it. Consider for an example our verse today, if it were not possible to walk in His statutes and keep His commandments and do them, God would not have invited the Israelites to do so. What parent would say to their newborn infant, "If you make your bed I will give you $10.00." There is no way for an infant to make a bed. It would be impossible, so the word 'if" is rendered meaningless. God does not use meaningless words, when His Word says "if" then it can be done.

The next time you read the word "if" in Scripture remember this, it is time for a decision. If you do this you get that, if you do not do this you will not get that. We live in a day and age wherein many want "that" but they will not do the "if" to obtain it. For example II Chronicles 7:14 contains a perfect example: If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

If is a mighty big word indeed! Perhaps, concerning the aspects of this life, the biggest in the Bible.

Until tomorrow, live for Christ today.

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