"We see, in many a land, the proudest dynasties and tyrannies still crushing, with their mountain weight, every free motion of the Consciences and hearts of men. We see, on the other hand, the truest heroism for the right and the greatest devotion to the Truth in hearts that God has touched. We have a work to do, as great as our forefathers and, perhaps, far greater. The enemies of Truth are more numerous and subtle than ever and the needs of the Church are greater than at any preceding time. If we are not debtors to the present, then men were never debtors to their age and their time. Brethren, we are debtors to the hour in which we live. Oh, that we might stamp it with Truth and that God might help us to impress upon its wings some proof that it has not flown by neglected and unheeded." -- C.H. Spurgeon . . . "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:31, 32 . . . . .

BOOKMARK AND SHARE

Bookmark and Share

Monday, December 27, 2021

LEVITICUS – A HOLY PEOPLE’s ACCESS to The HOLY GOD – Chapter TWENTYSEVEN

Contributing commentaries by pastors Sonny Islas, Albert Lopez and James Fire

Complete Study of Leviticus by pastor Chuck Smith 

LEVITICUS 27: “ ” – by James Fire, Facebook video not available.

INTRODUCTION: “The last verse of the foregoing chapter seemed to close up the statute book; yet this chapter is added as an appendix. Having given laws concerning instituted services, here he directs concerning vows and voluntary services, the freewill offerings of their mouth. Perhaps some devout serious people among them might be so affected with what Moses had delivered to them in the foregoing chapter as in a pang of zeal to consecrate themselves, or their children, or estates to him: this, because honestly meant, God would accept; but, because men are apt to repent of such vows, he leaves room for the redemption of what had been so consecrated, at a certain rate.” ~ Matthew Henry

LEVITICUS 27:1-7
1 Now the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 2 "Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: 'When a man consecrates by a vow certain persons to the LORD, according to your valuation, 3 'if your valuation is of a male from twenty years old up to sixty years old, then your valuation shall be fifty shekels of silver, according to the shekel of the sanctuary. 4 'If it is a female, then your valuation shall be thirty shekels; 5 'and if from five years old up to twenty years old, then your valuation for a male shall be twenty shekels, and for a female ten shekels; 6 'and if from a month old up to five years old, then your valuation for a male shall be five shekels of silver, and for a female your valuation shall be three shekels of silver; 7 'and if from sixty years old and above, if it is a male, then your valuation shall be fifteen shekels, and for a female ten shekels
.

In the Hebrew it’s expressed as, “set apart a vow”; setting apart oneself or anything belonging to him. We devote ourselves or our children to the LORD. This is what Hannah did with her firstborn son Samuel (1 SAM 1:28). The Hebrews could also offer a portion of their land, however, the LORD provided a regulation so that it could be redeemed, or the person or thing vowed, by specific estimation.

Where people are concerned, any that were devoted to the LORD shall belong to Him, and redeemed at the estimation according to Moses.

Zealous saints may vow themselves to the LORD and this is good, but there are times in our zeal we speak in haste and later come to regret them, so in wisdom the LORD provided a means by which people could take back (redeem) that which was given.

While our zeal for the LORD in offering ourselves or others may bless the heart of GOD, but He may have other purposes and services in mind, or if not these (because of any incapacities of the person seeking to make a dedication to the LORD) might be better served by the offering of money.

Note the different estimations: younger males are estimated at a higher value than children or older men, as is the case with younger women with little girls or older women. The estimation was according to usefulness and ability.

In such older cultures such things applied, but in the church, there are none valued more than others, for the same price was paid for all:
The LORD Jesus Christ’s precious blood was spent for young and old, men and women, people of all stations in life, and of all the various levels of status, and of all nations and people:
1 CORINTHIANS 12:13
For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

COLOSSIANS 3:11
Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all
.
LEVITICUS 27:8
But if he is too poor to pay your valuation, then he shall present himself before the priest, and the priest shall set a value for him; according to the ability of him who vowed, the priest shall value him
.

The LORD’s understanding, compassion and accommodation for the poor is always touching. He is not a demanding, dictator or tyrant that would command His people unreasonably. This is very much the same demonstration of mercy and accommodation that the LORD expressed in LEV 14:22-24. Where the LORD allows the sacrifice of turtledoves or pigeons for those who can’t afford a lamb.

And those after GOD’s own heart are the same in their compassion upon the poor, as opposed to the unsaved:
PROVERBS 29:7
The righteous considers the cause of the poor: but the wicked does not regard them
.
Not only is this in regards to the poor, but also those who do have some measure of means in his vows, but in offering them, they become impoverished. The LORD provides a way out for them so that they can keep enough to live on, and yet also have some means to give to GOD.

LEVITICUS 27:9-13
9 'If it is an animal that men may bring as an offering to the LORD, all that anyone gives to the LORD shall be holy. 10 'He shall not substitute it or exchange it, good for bad or bad for good; and if he at all exchanges animal for animal, then both it and the one exchanged for it shall be holy. 11 'If it is an unclean animal which they do not offer as a sacrifice to the LORD, then he shall present the animal before the priest; 12 'and the priest shall set a value for it, whether it is good or bad; as you, the priest, value it, so it shall be. 13 'But if he wants at all to redeem it, then he must add one-fifth to your valuation
.

We have seen the estimation of value of men and women of various ages, and here we see the estimation of value in animals; the difference between them is that a set value for men and women is established, whereas for animals, the value is estimated by the priest.
What can we say of ourselves? What estimation has the LORD valued us at?

We understand that we in and of ourselves are valueless – that is to say, because we have a sin nature, there is nothing that is estimable about us.

The Bible is very clear about this:
ISAIAH 64:6-7
6 But we are all like an unclean thing, And all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags; We all fade as a leaf, And our iniquities, like the wind, Have taken us away. 7 And there is no one who calls on Your name, Who stirs himself up to take hold of You; For You have hidden Your face from us, And have consumed us because of our iniquities.

ROMANS 7:18
For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh) nothing good dwells; for to will is present with me, but how to perform what is good I do not find
.
“Good” in this sense means “nothing of good benefit” – nothing useful, nothing of any value: just as trash is not useful and of no value but to go to the dump.
Not at all a flattering estimation to the human ego, that I grant you; but it’s truth nonetheless.

And yet by grace, GOD so loved the world that He gave us His Son (JOHN 3:16) and He shed His precious blood for our sins, in order to purchase us, and thereby making us His own and enabling Him to indwell us by His Spirit.

So the value that the Father sees in us is not inherent in our persons, but rather in the price that was paid for us. Because it was the blood of His own beloved and only begotten Son that was paid, we now have become exceedingly precious in His sight (JAMES 5:7; PSALM 116:15). That price that the LORD Jesus willingly paid for on our behalf reveals the dear and precious love that GOD has for us – truly the glorious demonstration of the grace of GOD on our lives!

Yet the LORD doesn't merely leave it at this level! For the child of GOD, redemption by the blood of the LAMB is just the beginning! Salvation includes justification (the removal of condemnation for sins committed, and put in a place of right standing before GOD), but also sanctification - which means that the nature of Jesus Christ - His character of godliness, His virtues of grace and truth, are grown in the life of the disciple, and this fruit is most precious to the Father (ROM 6:22) , Who is blessed to see the likeness of His only begotten Son in the hearts and lives of we who are accepted and adopted into the family of GOD (EPH 1:6).

LEVITICUS 27:14-15
14 'And when a man dedicates his house to be holy to the LORD, then the priest shall set a value for it, whether it is good or bad; as the priest values it, so it shall stand. 15 'If he who dedicated it wants to redeem his house, then he must add one-fifth of the money of your valuation to it, and it shall be his
.

The same rule applies here for property – the estimate is determined by the priest. When we dedicate ourselves to Jesus Christ, and surrender ourselves to Him as LORD and Savior, we surrender our lives, our families, our homes, our livelihood, all of our property: we surrender everything to the LORD Who then becomes the owner of all that we have. We become stewards over the things which we once owned.

That is why when the LORD calls for anything in our lives to be given away under His direction to where He would have it sent, we do so, without a moment’s hesitation; only because He is our LORD, and our hearts would never deny Him a thing!

Between Satan and our own flesh, we would be tempted to hold something back (out of selfishness and greed) from the LORD, and because He is so gracious, He doesn’t make demands for our property (unless we hold something so dear that it’s become an idol in our lives). While all things are truly His for He is the Creator of all things, if we decide to hold back part of a price – for something offered to the LORD, that is our GOD-given prerogative (ACTS 5:3-4).

It’s vital that if we claim Jesus as our LORD, then we live our lives as Christians, and that this life is exemplified in our homes; our family is our first ministry, immediately after the ministry of our own hearts before the LORD. Too often, because we focus on church ministry as the priority, that our own families suffer, and this is something GOD would not have. 

Too many young people have left the faith these days and one of those contributing factors is the feeling they have regarding their fathers and mothers, that ‘ministry’ is more important than they are.
If any one is to engage in ministry in the church, and specifically any who are considered for the pastorate, they must rule well their own house (1 TIM 3:4-5).

LEVITICUS 27:16-25
16 'If a man dedicates to the LORD part of a field of his possession, then your valuation shall be according to the seed for it. A homer of barley seed shall be valued at fifty shekels of silver. 17 'If he dedicates his field from the Year of Jubilee, according to your valuation it shall stand. 18 'But if he dedicates his field after the Jubilee, then the priest shall reckon to him the money due according to the years that remain till the Year of Jubilee, and it shall be deducted from your valuation. 19 'And if he who dedicates the field ever wishes to redeem it, then he must add one-fifth of the money of your valuation to it, and it shall belong to him. 20 'But if he does not want to redeem the field, or if he has sold the field to another man, it shall not be redeemed anymore; 21 'but the field, when it is released in the Jubilee, shall be holy to the LORD, as a devoted field; it shall be the possession of the priest. 22 'And if a man dedicates to the LORD a field which he has bought, which is not the field of his possession, 23 'then the priest shall reckon to him the worth of your valuation, up to the Year of Jubilee, and he shall give your valuation on that day as a holy offering to the LORD. 24 'In the Year of Jubilee the field shall return to him from whom it was bought, to the one who owned the land as a possession. 25 'And all your valuations shall be according to the shekel of the sanctuary: twenty gerahs to the shekel
.
In the case of acquired property in land, if not redeemed, it returned to the donor at the Jubilee; whereas the part of a hereditary estate, which had been vowed, did not revert to the owner, but remained attached in perpetuity to the sanctuary. The reason for this remarkable difference was to lay every man under an obligation to redeem the property, or stimulate his nearest kinsman to do it, in order to prevent a patrimonial inheritance going out from any family in Israel. ~ Jamieson Fausset and Brown
A field of his possession, i.e. which is his by inheritance, because particular direction is given about purchased lands, LEV 27:22. [Only] part of it, because it was unlawful to vow away all his possessions, because thereby he had disenabled himself from the performance of various duties by way of sacrifice, almsgiving, etc., and made himself burdensome to his brethren.
According to the seed thereof, i.e. according to the quantity and quality of the land, which is known by the quantity of seed which it can receive and return.
Fifty shekels of silver, not paid yearly, but once for all until the year of jubilee.

1. Because here is no mention of any yearly payment, but only of one payment, and we must not add to the text.

2. Because it is most probable that lands and all things were favorably and moderately valued, so that men might be rather encouraged to make such vows upon just occasions, than to be deterred from them by excessive impositions. But if this were yearly rent, it was an excessive rate, and much more than the land ordinarily yielded. For an omer is but the tenth part of an ephah
(EXOD 16:36) . . . ~ Matthew Poole
LEVITICUS 27:26-30
26 But the firstborn of the animals, which should be the LORD'S firstborn, no man shall dedicate; whether it is an ox or sheep, it is the LORD'S. 27 'And if it is an unclean animal, then he shall redeem it according to your valuation, and shall add one-fifth to it; or if it is not redeemed, then it shall be sold according to your valuation. 28 Nevertheless no devoted offering that a man may devote to the LORD of all that he has, both man and beast, or the field of his possession, shall be sold or redeemed; every devoted offering is most holy to the LORD. 29 'No person under the ban, who may become doomed to destruction among men, shall be redeemed, but shall surely be put to death. 30 'And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land or of the fruit of the tree, is the LORD'S. It is holy to the LORD
.

The firstborn was always the LORD’s. It was understood that any that “opens the womb” shall be dedicated to the LORD: it was so with Samuel, whose mother, Hanna, vowed to the LORD that she would dedicate her son to Him, if only the LORD would take away her barren state which was a reproach among women in those days (1 SAM 1; esp. vs. 10-11).
The word cherem, here rendered a devoted thing, implies an anathema or curse. Persons [who were so] devoted, were by solemn vows consigned to utter destruction without [possibility of] redemption; but then this vow could not be valid if contrary to any part of the divine law; and in that case the person making it needed repentance and forgiveness. In respect of things devoted, they were either utterly destroyed by fire, or wholly dedicated to religious uses. The Lord himself thus devoted the Amalekites, and the Canaanites in general, and the inhabitants of Jericho in particular, but he reserved the precious metals for the sacred treasury. And the Israelites thus devoted the cities of Arad (NUM 21:1-3). Probably Jephtha’s vow, and his manner of performing it, arose from a misconstruction of this law; for whatever was [in such a way] devoted was surely to be put to death, if no divine law [had forbidden it]; but the people rescued Jonathan, whom his father Saul had thus rashly and unwittingly devoted; and doubtless they acted properly. (1 SAM 14:44-45) ~ Thomas Scott
LEVITICUS 27:31-34
31 'If a man wants at all to redeem any of his tithes, he shall add one-fifth to it. 32 'And concerning the tithe of the herd or the flock, of whatever passes under the rod, the tenth one shall be holy to the LORD. 33 'He shall not inquire whether it is good or bad, nor shall he exchange it; and if he exchanges it at all, then both it and the one exchanged for it shall be holy; it shall not be redeemed.'" 34 These are the commandments which the LORD commanded Moses for the children of Israel on Mount Sinai
.
The tither's rod, it being the manner of the Jews in tithing to cause all their cattle to pass through some gate or narrow passage, where the tenth was marked by a person appointed for that purpose and reserved for the priest. Or, the shepherd's rod, under which the herds and flocks passed, and by which they were governed and numbered. See JER 33:13; EZEK 20:37. ~ Matthew Poole
So we have seen in EXODUS the great deliverance by GOD of His people Israel, redeeming them from Egypt and of the Hebrew people’s slavery there. And in this book of LEVITICUS, a pronounced and emphatic command from the LORD regarding the holiness of His people; that these peculiar laws and commands given to Israel are so unlike the ways of the Gentile nations reveals the LORD’s desire that they would be separate and sanctified. Their obedience to the Law of the LORD would demonstrate a love for the One Who demonstrated His love for them already by delivering them from Egypt, in order to fulfill His promises to Abraham that GOD made by covenant (GEN 15).

No comments:

ReferenceTagging.tag();