Questions and Answers about
Leviticus: The description of ritual laws for Israelite religion
1. Why don't Christians abide by these laws today? (They consider everything in the Bible to be God's word, therefore are not his biblical commandments valid?)
The Law of Moses revolved around the Levitical, or Aaronic Priesthood. Some of the practices were symbollic of the mission and life of the Messiah, ie sacrifices = God sacrificing his son. Jesus was a fulfillment of the law, so the similitudinous rituals were no longer necessary. Sacrifices were replaced by the Sacrament. Matthew 5:17 "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil."
The other reason is because the Melchezidek Priesthood, which Jesus reinstated, takes authority over the Levitical Priesthood. Hebrews 7:11-12, "If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law,) what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron? For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law."
Or as Jesus explained to the Nephites in North America, "Old things are done away, and all things have become new." (3 Nephi 12:47)
2. Isn't a bit strange that the Jewish writers of the bible proclaimed that Jews are God's chosen people and then proclaimed that this is God's Holy Word?
"Well, it's like Yogi Bera used to say, "It ain't bragging if you can do it." The Book of Mormon also testified that the Jews were the covenant people. In a revelation given to Nephi, God says, "O ye Gentiles, have ye remembered the Jews, mine ancient covenant people?" (2 Nephi 29:5) But of course, the people in the Book of Mormon were also of the Tribe of Israel, but this gives two different accounts from two different testaments about the Jews status in Biblical Times. So no, it's not strange at all.
3. Leviticus proclaims that you must not eat locusts, yet in Matthew and Mark we see John the Baptist going about preaching and eating locusts and wild honey. (Shame on him!)
In the book, Jesus the Christ, James Talmage clarifies this for us. (Maybe some people ought to just read this book, so they don't ask unnecessary questions. *wink*)
"Locusts and Wild Honey. -- Insects of the locust or grasshopper kind were specifically declared clean and suitable for food in the law given to Israel in the wilderness. "Yet these may ye eat of every flying creeping thing that goeth upon all four, which have legs above their feet, to leap withal upon the earth; even these of them ye may eat; the locust after his kind, and the bald locust after his kind, and the beetle after his kind, and the grasshopper after his kind." (Lev. 11:21, 22.) They were `clean,' under the Mosaic Law, and hence could be eaten by John without offence."
No shame for John, but maybe some shame on Deena for not reading Leviticus better.