By the end of the book of Leviticus one is more than halfway through the Pentateuch. It seems a good spot to stop and briefly review what we have so far seen.

Before we start reading the Old Testament (OT) a few preliminary matters need to be mentioned. Not everyone agrees on what constitutes the OT. In general, Protestant tradition recognizes the list of books in the Hebrew Bible as canonical, while Catholic and Orthodox traditions follow the longer Greek list.

An intriguing thing about 'The Bible' is that we customarily refer to it in the singular. This title has a long and hallowed pedigree, matched by another singular term: 'The Word of God'. But, when we open it up this 'Bible' contains many different books with many words.

The book of Leviticus sits right in the centre of the Pentateuch, framed on one side by Genesis and Exodus and on the other by Numbers and Deuteronomy. It deals with that most important matter in any religion: worship of God.

We resume our reflections on the Torah (Pentateuch) and turn our attention to the second of its five books-Exodus. This is a powerful yet at times disturbing work.

Deuteronomy-the last book of the Torah or Pentateuch, but certainly not the least. It envisages the extraordinary ideal of the one people of Israel gathered in the one land to worship the one Lord of Israel at one place according to the one Torah.