This verse appears towards the end of the description of kosher dietary laws. God draws a clear parallel between obeying the kosher laws and sustaining a status of holiness; we are to be holy as God is holy. The Bible instructs the People of Israel to distinguish between things which can be eaten and things which are not to be eaten. In handing these requirements to the Jewish people, God is requiring that they distinguish themselves from the other nations. They are handed an enormous responsibility to live a holy life, to follow God’s commandments and to come as close as possible to the holiness of God. Through the commandments such as the kosher dietary laws, the People of Israel are to have a positive spiritual influence on the rest of the world.
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Source: Israel in the News