Posts Tagged ‘Leviticus’

Spiritual Training 16 June 2015

Posted: June 16, 2015 in leviticus
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Under Gods Command (Book of Leviticus)
Leviticus 26:1-12 Reward for Obedience

26:1 ‘Do not make idols or set up an image or a sacred stone for yourselves, and do not place a carved stoned in your land to bow down before it. I am the LORD your God.
2“ ‘Observe my Sabbaths and have reverence for my sanctuary. I am the LORD.
3“ ‘If you follow my decrees and are careful to obey my commands, 4I will send you rain in its season, and the ground will yield its crops and the trees their fruit. 5Your threshing will continue until grape harvest and the grape harvest will continue until planting, and you will eat all the food you want and live in safety in your land.
6“ ‘I will grant peace in the land, and you will lie down and no one will make you afraid. I will remove wild beasts from the land, and the sword will not pass through your country. 7You will pursue your enemies, and they will fall by the sword before you. 8Fiver of you will chase a hundred, and a hundred of you will chase ten thousand, and your enemies will fall by the sword before you.
9“ ‘I will look on you with favor and make you fruitful and increase your numbers, and I will keep my covenant with you. 10You will still be eating last year’s harvest when you will have to move it out to make room for the new. 11I will put my dwelling place w among you, and I will not abhor you. 12I will walk among you and be your God, and you will be my people.

This chapter presents the two paths of obedience and disobedience that God set before the people (see also Deuteronomy 28). The people of the Old Testament were warned over and over against worshiping idols. We wonder how they could deceive themselves with these objects of wood and stone.

Lets Bring it Home: Yet God could well give us the same warning, for we are prone to put idols before him. Idolatry is making anything more important than God, and our lives are full of that temptation. Money, looks, success, reputation, security—these are today’s idols. As you look at these false gods that promise everything you want but nothing you need, does idolatry seem so far removed from your experience?


Under Gods Command (Book of Leviticus)
Leviticus 25:35-37

35If any of your fellow Israelites become poor and are unable to support themselves among you, help them as you would a foreigner and stranger, so they can continue to live among you. 36Do not take interest or any profit from them, but fear your God, so that they may continue to live among you. 37You must not lend them money at interest or sell them food at a profit.

God said that neglecting the poor was a sin. Permanent poverty was not allowed in Israel. Financially secure families were responsible to help and house those in need. Many times we do nothing, not because we lack compassion, but because we are overwhelmed by the size of the problem and don’t know where to begin.

Lets Bring it Home: God doesn’t expect you to eliminate poverty, nor does he expect you to neglect your family while providing for others. He does, however, expect that when you see an individual in need, you will reach out with whatever help you can offer, including hospitality.


Under Gods Command (Book of Leviticus)
Leviticus 24:13-16 A Blasphemer Stoned

13Then the LORD said to Moses:14“Take the blasphemer outside the camp. All those who heard him are to lay their hands on his head, and the entire assembly is to stone him. 15Say to the Israelites: ‘Anyone who curses their Gods will be held responsible; 16anyone who blasphemes the name of the LORD is to be put to death. The entire assembly must stone them. Whether foreigner or native-born, when they blaspheme the Name they are to be put to death.

This punishment for blasphemy (cursing God) seems extreme by modern standards. But it shows how seriously God expects us to take our relationship with him. Often we use his name in swearing, or we act as though he doesn’t exist.

Lets Bring it Home: We should be careful how we speak and act, treating God with reverence. Eventually, he will have the last word.


Under Gods Command (Book of Leviticus)

Leviticus 22:19-25 Unacceptable Sacrifices

19you must present a male without defect from the cattle, sheep or goats in order that it may be accepted on your behalf. 20Do not bring anything with a defect, because it will not be accepted on your behalf. 21When anyone brings from the herd or flock a fellowship offering to the LORD to fulfill a special vow or as a freewill offering, it must be without defect or blemish to be acceptable. 22Do not offer to the LORD the blind, the injured or the maimed, or anything with warts or festering or running sores. Do not place any of these on the altar as a food offering presented to the LORD. 23You may, however, present as a freewill offering an ox or a sheep that is deformed or stunted, but it will not be accepted in fulfillment of a vow. 24You must not offer to the LORD an animal whose testicles are bruised, crushed, torn or cut. You must not do this in your own land, 25and you must not accept such animals from the hand of a foreigner and offer them as the food of your God.t They will not be accepted on your behalf, because they are deformed and have defects.

Animals with defects were not acceptable as sacrifices because they did not represent God’s holy nature. Furthermore, the animal had to be without blemish in order to foreshadow the perfect, sinless life of Jesus Christ. When we give our best time, talent, and treasure to God rather than what is tarnished or common, we demonstrate the true meaning of worship and testify to God’s supreme worth.

Lets Bring it Home: What kind of quality can people see in your service and giving?

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Under Gods Command (Book of Leviticus)
Leviticus 20:1-6
Punishments for Sin

1The LORD said to Moses, 2“Say to the Israelites: ‘Any Israelite or any foreigner residing in Israel who sacrifices any of his children to Molek is to be put to death. The members of the community are to stone him. 3I myself will set my face against him and will cut him off from his people; for by sacrificing his children to Molek, he has defiled my sanctuary and profaned my holy name. 4If the members of the community close their eyes when that man sacrifices one of his children to Molek and if they fail to put him to death, 5I myself will set my face against him and his family and will cut them off from their people together with all who follow him in prostituting themselves to Molek.

Sacrificing children to the gods was a common practice in ancient religions. The Ammonites, Israel’s neighbors, made child sacrifice to Molek (their national god) a vital part of their religion. They saw this as the greatest gift they could offer to ward off evil or appease angry gods. God made it clear that this practice was detestable and strictly forbidden. In Old Testament times as well as New, his character made human sacrifice unthinkable. (1) Unlike the pagan gods, he is the God of love, who does not need to be appeased (Exodus 34:6). (2) He is the God of life, who prohibits murder and encourages practices that lead to health and happiness (Deuteronomy 30:15-16). (3) He is the God of the helpless, who shows special concern for children (Psalm 72:4). (4) He is the God of unselfishness who, instead of demanding human sacrifices, sacrificed himself for us (Isaiah 53:4-5).

6“ ‘I will set my face against anyone who turns to mediums and spiritists to prostitute themselves by following them, and I will cut them off from their people.

Everyone is interested in what the future holds, and we often look to others for guidance. But God warned about looking to the occult for advice. Mediums and spiritists were outlawed because God was not the source of their information. At best, occult practitioners are fakes whose predictions cannot be trusted. At worst, they are in contact with evil spirits and are thus extremely dangerous.

Lets Bring it Home: We don’t need to look to the occult for information about the future. God has given us the Bible so that we may obtain all the information we need—and the Bible’s teaching is trustworthy.


Under Gods Command (Book of Leviticus)
Leviticus 19:33-34 Various Laws

33“ ‘When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. 34The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the LORD your God.

How do you feel when you encounter strangers and foreigners, especially those who don’t speak your language? Are you impatient? Do you think or act as if they should go back where they came from? Are you tempted to take advantage of them?

Lets Bring it Home: God says to treat foreigners and strangers as you’d treat fellow citizens, to love them as you love yourself. In reality, we are all foreigners in this world, because it is only our temporary home. View strangers, newcomers, and foreigners as opportunities to demonstrate God’s love.


Under Gods Command (Book of Leviticus)
Leviticus 19:32 Various Laws

32“ ‘Stand up in the presence of the aged, show respect for the elderly and revere your God. I am the LORD.

People often find it easy to dismiss the opinions of the elderly and avoid taking time to visit with them. But the fact that God commanded the Israelites to honor the elderly shows how seriously we should take the responsibility of respecting those older than we are. Their wisdom gained from experience can save us from many pitfalls.

Lets Bring it Home: How do you show respect and honor to your elders?