Ceremonially clean vs. unclean is not the same as sin. There was not a punishment listed for when an Israelite became unclean. Once unclean there is a consecration process for touching dead animals, and post-natal bleeding. The Lord is teaching them to discern between clean and unclean. Holy vs. unholy, if you will. He tells them this is the case in verses 11: 43—45. Just like He chose them to be holy and brought them out of Egypt, they must choose to be holy to enjoy the relationship, and fellowship of worship.
The next part makes all my feminist tendencies rear their head! But, if you are like me in that way, take a breath, give God a chance to explain Himself to you. God does not hate women. He does not make the uncleanness last longer for baby girls because He hates baby girls. This whole thing is to make the Israelites holy (set apart and unique). As I see it, and again, we have established I am not scholar, a mom of a boy had to become ceremonially clean to take her son to be dedicated to the Lord through circumcision. She then gets another 30 days to remain unclean. She stays out of society, home with her baby. Sounds like a kindness to me. The baby girl does not have to be circumcised. So the mom and baby get to enjoy a longer time of being ceremonially unclean, home, out of society, together. I think this is where maternity leave must have started. The consecration process is to bring a burnt offering and pigeon or turtle dove for a purification offering. This shows us that being ceremonially unclean is not a sin, otherwise they would have had to bring a guilt or sin offering. Unclean meant that you were separated from society for a time.
Mark 5: 21—43
How cool is it that the instructions in Leviticus for women’s post-natal bleeding and the story of Jesus healing the bleeding woman line up? Coincidence? I think not! This woman had a condition that would have kept her out of society for her whole life. Being on maternity leave like in Leviticus is ok, but imagine never being able to go into society. You were not able to worship or share meals or just hang out at the well with the other woman. She must have been miserable. She was also broke from trying to find a cure. But from somewhere she heard about what Jesus could do, and in her heart she knew He was so powerful that if she could just touch the hem of His robe she would be healed. Her faith cured her. Jesus did not let her be healed in secret. He stops and gives this woman who had been kept out of society some dignity. Jesus made her clean, and put her back into fellowship in society.
Psalm 38: 1-22
A Psalm of sorrow. David takes us through how his sin has robbed him of his health. He feels the separation from the Lord because of his sin. His enemies are plotting treachery. Yet David still calls out to the Lord. David knows God is his Savior.
The wise are glad to be instructed. Uugghh! Lord make me glad to be instructed. People who walk with integrity (doing the right thing even when people aren’t looking) walk safely. In our house we say, “If you can’t tell us about something you are doing you probably should not be doing it!”