Leviticus – Chapter 27

chapter 27

Verses 1-8 – this chapter explains how valuations were to be made and what to do if a donor later wished to buy back what had been donated to God.

Verses 9, 10 – God taught the Israelite’s that when they made a vow to Him, they must not go back on their promise even if it turned out to cost more than expected.

Verses 14-25 – Real estate could be given as a voluntary offering in much the same way that today’s people give property through a will or donate the proceeds from the sale of property to the church or Christians organizations.

Verse 29 – Such things that were “captured booty” from idol-worshipers or idols themselves were to be destroyed.

Tithes

Verses 30-33 – The first time the tithe is mentioned in the Bible was when Abraham gave a tenth the Melchizedek. The tithe was important because it provided the necessary provisions for the day-to-day operations of the temple. The giving of the tithe was revived by Nehemiah during his era since it seems that the practice had been ignored (Nehemiah 13:10-13, 37-38). Through the prophet Malachi, God rebuked the people for robbing Him by not bringing their tithes into the storehouse (temple), (Malachi 3:8-10).

Conclusion:

The book of Leviticus is filled with commands God gave His people at the foot of Mount Sinai. From these commandments we can learn much about God’s nature and character. Some may think this book is irrelevant. But if we dig a little deeper we will see God has not changed; His principles are for all times. Societies and cultures will change but God is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

Leviticus – Chapter 26

chapter 26

Verses 1-3 – This chapter presents the two paths of obedience and disobedience that God set before His people. The people of the Old Testament were warned over and over against worshiping idols. God was pretty plain about what idols were. Idolatry is making anything more important than God is. We sometimes call this an obsession when we focus so much on money, looks, success, in anything that takes God’s place. But there are still some who bow before statues, carved images or monuments. God hasn’t changed in how He deserves your entire honor or all the glory.

Verse 13 – God took the children of Israel out of bitter slavery and gave them freedom and dignity. We too are set free from our past when we accept Jesus Christ as Lord. We too are warned of returning to the old temptations that once held us in bondage.

Conditions and Results of Disobedience

Verses 14-17 – These curses match the five sets of blessings in verses 3-13. The curses increase in severity with a persistent refusal to repent. The Lord would turn against His people only after they turned against Him.

Verse 18 – God used sin’s consequences to draw them to repentance, not to get back at them. To a believer today, calamity is not always the result of wrong doing; we have to guard against accepting blame for every tragedy we encounter. This misplaced guilt is one of Satan’s favorite weapons against believer.

Verse 29 – This curse was fulfilled when the Syrian King Ben-Hadad besieged Samaria, the capital of northern Israel.

Verse 31 – This reference to sweet aromas, God was simply saying He wouldn’t accept their sacrifices any longer.

Verses 33-35 – These verses came true in 2 Kings 17 and 25. Israel persistently disobeyed and eventually were conquered and carried off to the lands of Assyria and Babylonia. The nation was held in captivity 70 years, making up for all the years that the Israelite’s did not observe the law of the Sabbath year (2 Chronicles 36:21).

The Promise of Restoration

Verses 40-45 – God shows them He is slow to anger (Exodus 34:6). Even after Israel chose to disobey and were scattered among their enemies, God would give them opportunity to repent. God’s purpose was not to destroy them, but to help them grow. When people think that God is always just waiting for us to mess up so He can punish us, shows they don’t know God’s character. Jeremiah 29:11, 12 very plainly tells us, God has a wonderful plan for our lives. The Bible says, “God’s goodness will cause men to repent.” He is the God of second and third, fourth, and ………… chances. He wants a relationship with us and His purpose for our lives is so amazing that we can’t imagine it all at once. He guides us through His spirit that can only come through accepting His Son.

Leviticus – Chapter 25

Jubilee

Law of the Sabbath Year

Verses 1-7 – The Sabbath year provided one entire year that the land would lay fallow (UN-plowed). This was good management of natural resources and reminded the people all year-long that God would provide for them.

Law of the Year of Jubilee

Verses 8-17 – The year of Jubilee was to be celebrated every 50 years. All debts were cleared; slaves were freed; and land was returned to original owners in this 50th year. There is no indication in the Bible that the Year of Jubilee was ever carried out. If Israel had followed this practice faithfully, they would have been a society without permanent poverty.

Verses 20, 21 – Look what God said He would do if they gave the land a rest every 7 years and kept the 50th year for a celebration; in the sixth year, He would command a blessing and they would produce enough to feed them and their families for 3 years. Our God is a more than enough God. The provision He provides is always more than enough. But we have to believe that He’s a more than enough God in order to receive it. They were not to eat of the 8th year crop when they started planting again because God had given them enough until a full crop came in.

Verse 23 – None of the land of Canaan could be sold on a permanent base. God owned it all. God didn’t want the Israelite’s to get an attitude of greed and materialism. If we keep an attitude of stewardship over what we have, we will be more likely to share what God has given us. This can be difficult to do when we have an attitude of “this is mine.”

Verse 25 – This law was applied when Ruth was redeemed by Boaz after her closest family redeemer refused to marry her.

Verses 32-34 – Even though the Levite priests were not allotted permanent property in the Promised Land; they were provided permanent residence and pastureland.

Verses 35-38 – God placed great emphasis on assisting the poor. God also stated that neglecting the poor was a sin. Financially secure families were responsible to help those who fell into poverty. They were told they could not profit from charging interest on any loans either. The society we live in today is so far from the way God intended things to be set up. First, if you have very little and do possibly get a loan, you pay twice the interest rate that someone who has, pays. Second, if you’re so called score is not high enough you won’t even get the loan. Those that have, are catered to and those who have not, are ignored. As believers in “Christ, we can not ignore those who are less fortunate.

Verses 39-55 – God provided for the poor who had to sell themselves and become slaves. However, slavery was only to be a temporary condition. The law prohibited harsh treatment.

Leviticus – Chapter 24

chapter24

Oil for the Lamps

You might be asking; why is all this important for me to know? Throughout the Bible you’re going to find these festivals mentioned. They all have special meaning to God’s character. In Jesus day during the time of Passover there was a lot going on and if you stay in a state of confusion about certain terms being used, you will miss the deeper meaning of why Christ came.

Verse 1-4 – This lamp stand was the seven-branched menorah that lighted the Holy Place of the tabernacle. The light represented God’s presence. Jesus affirmed He was the “light of the world.”

The Show bread

Verses 5-9 – These 12 loaves were called “the bread of Presence.” They represented; God’s provision; the 12 tribes of Israel; and they pointed to the totality of God’s provision throughout the years in the wilderness. Jesus affirmed He was the “Bread of Life” satisfying those who were spiritually hungry.

Verses 10-16 – The punishment for cursing God may seem extreme to us, but it shows how serious God expected them to take their relationship with Him. There are those who use His name in swearing or act as though He doesn’t exist, but God will have the last word. When this happens in my presence I say “woe, that’s my Father I pray to, how about having a little respect in front of me.”

Verses 17-22 – This was a code for Judges to go by. It was not an endorsement for personal vengeance. In effect, it was saying that the punishment should fit the crime. But not go beyond.

Leviticus – Chapter 23

chapter 23

The Weekly Sabbath

Verses 1-3 – God established the Sabbath for man. They were to rest on the 7th day from the work they did the other six days. The animals and the servants had a day of rest also. Jesus made it clear though that rest on the Sabbath did not keep them from doing good on the Sabbath. This was not a day for them to deprive themselves of joyful activity. It was to be spent in thanksgiving and worship in God.

Passover

Verses 4, 5 – God established several holidays each year for celebration, fellowship, and worship. You can learn a lot about someone’s values by the way they celebrate certain traditions.

Verses 6-8 – The Feast of Unleavened Bread reminded the Israelite’s of their escape from Egypt. This unleavened bread was a symbol of; their uniqueness as a nation; the yeast was a symbol of sin, so without the yeast it represented moral purity; it reminded them to be quick to obey.

First fruits

Verses 9-14 – During this feast the Israelite’s were to show gratitude to God for His provision. The Israelite’s could not eat the food of their harvest until they had made this offering. They gave the first and best of what made their income. The prophetic element of this feast was fulfilled in the risen Jesus Christ, who is the first fruits of those believers who have died ( 1 Corinthians 15:20).

Pentecost

Verses 15 “Pentecost” comes from the Greek word meaning “fiftieth” and it concluded the end of the period of seven weeks that began during Passover. In Acts 2, the Jews were celebrating this feast when the Holy Spirit came upon those who were gathered in Jerusalem.

Trumpets

Verses 23-25 – What later became known as the Feast of Trumpets was observed in the seventh month of Tishri, when the Israelite’s celebrated the end of the harvest. This day became the Jewish New Year (Rosh Hashanah). Trumpet blasts are important in the end times when events surrounding Christ’s second coming will be preceded by angels blowing trumpets (Revelation 8:7, 8, 10,12;9:1, 13-14; 10:7; 11:15).

Day of Atonement

Verses 25-32 – This was a day to express remorse over personal and corporate sin.

Tabernacles

Verses 33-44 – The Feast of Tabernacles was also called the Feast of In-gathering which involved the entire family. This was a time of renewed commitment to God. This was a time of reflection of God’s goodness.

Leviticus – Chapter 22

chapter 22

Things Prohibited of the Priesthood

Verses 1-9 – Why were the guidelines so strict that God gave the priest? God wanted His priest and people to serve only Him. Their duties were religious not political as Egypt’s were. God’s priests were to help the people worship Him in a pure way. They could not use their position to gain power because they were not allowed to own land or take money from anyone.

Verses 19-25 – “Without Blemish”-perfect. We serve a Holy God. Whether it is time, talents, or money, these verses convey that God wants our best, not left-over’s. He gave us His best when He gave us Christ. He was perfect in every way. We should do the same.

Leviticus – Chapter 21

Leviticus chapter 21

 

Verses 1-24 – The standard of holiness was set higher for the priest. These leaders were held to a higher standard in matters such as mourning, marriage, and family. This concept parallels the New Testament where church leaders such as elders, bishops, and deacons are all held to higher standards (James 3:1).

Verses 16-23 – Was God discriminating against the handicapped? Just as God required no imperfect animal be sacrificed He required no handicapped priest offer a sacrifice. This was not meant as discrimination rather, it had to do with the fact that the priest must match as closely as possible the perfect God he served. Such perfection was not fully realized until Jesus Christ came. As Levites, the handicapped priest were protected and supported with food from the sacrifices. They were not abandoned because they still performed many essential services within the tabernacle

Leviticus – Chapter 20

Molech

The Penalty for Worshiping Molech

Verses 1-5 – Molech, or Moloch was the national god of the Ammonites (1 Kings 11:7). Molech is usually associated in the Bible with child sacrifice. The Ammonites were Israel’s neighbors. They would sacrifice their children to their god to ward off evil and appease angry gods. God condemned this act. Unlike the pagan gods, our God is love that does not need to be appeased (Exodus 34:6). He is a God of life, who prohibits murder. He is a God of the helpless, who shows special concern for children (Psalm 72:4).

The Penalty of Consulting Spirits

Verse 6 – Everyone has a curiosity about the future. But God strictly warns against using the occult for advice. God calls them mediums and familiar spirits. Let me be very clear; those who practice through these familiar spirits are not from God. I’ve heard several well-known mediums give the credit of their ability to talk to the dead or tell the future, to God. They say He gave them this gift. God strictly forbids it in the Old Testament; the only difference in today’s society is they are not put to death because of their practice. We are to look to God for all things. Demons lie and are untrustworthy. The only future they know is their own because it’s been written in the Bible.

The Penalty of Cursing Parents

Verse 9 – Rest assured, God left nothing out of how He wanted the Israelite’s to conduct themselves. Unlike today’s society where children curse, steal from, and even kill their own parents; God wanted them to totally respect their parents or be put to death.

The Penalty Sexual Sins

Verses 10-21 – These next verses of sexual sin, God calls an abomination or perversion. God had no tolerance for such acts for the following reasons; (1) they shatter the commitment of marriage; (2) they destroy the sanctity of the family; (3) they twist people’s mental well-being; (4) they spread sexual disease. God was telling the Israelite’s what they were about to face when they entered the land of Canaan. The Canaanites immoral religious practices reflected a decadent culture that tended to corrupt whoever was exposed to them. Do you think because today’s culture has accepted so many of these sins, that God accepts it today? If He called them perversions and abominations then, they still are today. These are God’s words.

The Purpose of the Laws of Sanctification of the People

Verses 22-27 – God did not withhold good from them. He only forbids those things that would ruin them. We all understand the laws of nature; such as how gravity works; some don’t understand how spiritual laws work though. God forbids certain things because they are self-destructive. There are certain consequences for everything we do. God only wants the best for His people.

Leviticus – Chapter 19

gleening in the field

Throughout the Book of Leviticus is one theme; worship, integrity, justice, and love. This idea was repeated by Jesus on the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 5).

Verses 9, 10 – God instructed the Hebrews to provide for those in need. He required them to leave the edges of their field’s un-harvested, providing food for travelers and the poor. God desires for us to be generous.

Verses 10-31 – Some people think the Bible is full of don’ts… But Jesus summarized all these laws when He said to love God with all your heart, and love your neighbor as yourself. He called these the greatest commandments of all (Matthew 22:34-40). By following these two rules, we will find ourselves following everything else as well.

Verse 32 – People often like to dismiss the opinions of the elderly but much wisdom can be gained by their experiences and save us from life’s pitfalls.

Verse 33, 34 – God says to treat foreigners as you’d treat fellow citizens, to love them as you love yourself. We should view strangers, newcomers, and foreigners as an opportunity to demonstrate God’s love.

Leviticus – Chapter18

laws

Verses 1-5 – The Israelite’s moved from one idol-infested country to another. He warned them to leave all aspects of pagan background behind. He also warned them of how easy it would be to slip into the pagan culture of Canaan. The Israelite’s were to keep them pure, set apart to God.

Verse 6 – Marrying relatives were and still are prohibited by God. I know they married relatives in the past but the population had grown now to the point of not being necessary. Children born to near relatives may experience serious health problems (God included daughter-in-laws and sister-in-laws).

Verses 7-27 – God goes into great detail about what He considers abominations or wicked actions; (1) sexual relations with close relatives, (2) committing adultery; (3) offering children as sacrifices; (3) having homosexual relations; (5) and having sexual relations with animals. These practices were common in pagan religions and cultures. Such practices lead to disease deformity, and death. Homosexuality called detestable because it is against God’s order of creation and against His laws of pertaining to the covenant community. The word occurs 116 times in the Old Testament, (New Testament see Romans 1:27; 1 Corinthians 6:9). Today’s society takes these laws and practices lightly, even to the point of making them acceptable. However, they are still sin in God’s word.