"My covenant was with [Levi], a covenant of life and peace." — Malachi 2:5
God's discipline is meant to restore his people to himself. God has "a covenant of life and peace" with his people, and he longs to restore that relationship. But life and peace do not come easily in this broken world. The covenant with Levi began when the Israelites worshiped a golden calf and ran wild with disobedience. Moses said, "'Whoever is for the LORD, come to me.' And all the Levites rallied to him" (Exodus 32:26). The Levites became a sort of police force to restore God's order from chaos. From then on, the reverence shown by the Levites was an indicator of God's restoring his relationship with his people.
The deeper my relationship with God becomes, the more I long to see Jesus take complete control of my life. Once that sounded oppressive to me; now it sounds like the greatest freedom. I am addicted to sin, and death is a continual threat to my life and peace. But through the Holy Spirit, Jesus weans me from those evil powers. I have found I cannot do it on my own; I need Jesus' help.
I have also found that Jesus' help often comes through other godly Christians—people who become like my own personal Levites. When we learn to live in humble community together, submitting to each other's guidance in Christ, we receive a life and peace that few others ever know. Have you found that to be true in your life?