(Leviticus 27, Psalm 34; Optional Romans 11:13-36, Proverbs 20:10-14)
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LEVITICUS 27 – This chapter is humbling for me because after years of reading through the Bible, I mostly have question marks written in my margin. And when I studied my reliable resources there was very little agreement. The chapter gives instructions that help the priests help the Israelites keep their vows to God. Much isn’t as clear now, but would have helped them fulfill their vows and tithes.
Lev 27:8 – Yahweh graciously provided a way for the poor to give what they could afford and still honor God.
Lev 27:26 – Firstborns couldn’t be used in a vow since they ALREADY belonged to the Lord (see Ex 13:2; 34:19-20).
Lev 27:28-29 – This is the same language used of the people that Israel was called upon by God to destroy in His judgment when He brought them into the Promised Land (compare Gen 15:12-16 and Deut 7, especially Deut 7:2, 25-26; then see Josh 7 for God’s righteous wrath when this was disobeyed).
Lev 27:12, 15, 19, 31, etc – There were often ways to return something to normal use by redeeming a vow using money. This made sure the Tabernacle and the Levites were supported AND Israelites could show their dedication to honoring the Lord. But remember what’s said of OUR (if you’re a Christian) Redeemer, Jesus: “…you were ransomed (or “redeemed”)…NOT with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the PRECIOUS BLOOD of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot.” As a matter of fact, a fitting conclusion to Leviticus would be to meditate on 1 Pet 1:14-21. Notice the use of so many concepts developed in Leviticus and applied to the life of a believer calling us to be holy – separated as belonging to God. As part of this, I’d recommend looking up Matt Papa’s “1st Peter Song (I Want to Be Holy)”.
The book of Numbers is next!
7-minute video overview of the book of Numbers: https://bibleproject.com/explore/video/numbers/
Hour-ish overview sermon by Mark Dever: https://www.capitolhillbaptist.org/sermon/past-and-to-come-seem-best-things-present-worst-the-message-of-numbers/
PSALM 34 – Proper fear of God (see v 4, 7, 9, 11) leads to confident, joyful praise! The END of the story for all believers is FULL and COMPLETE DELIVERANCE (compare Ps 34:4-7, 17-19 to Rev 21-22)!
Ps 34:7-14 – One of the main texts for understanding proper fear of God. Note that this is no cringing, shrinking fear, but a turning from sin while turning to God in confident trust and praise!
Ps 34:15-22 – Filled with sweet comfort for believers that are going through heartbreak, AND sober warnings (v 16, 21) for those that take any other path that of fearing God (in the proper turning-away-from-sin and finding-your-joy-in-God way described in Ps 34).
Ps 34:20 – Fulfilled by Jesus on the cross, so I’ve written a cross and “fulfilled in Jn 19:36”. The cross is where Jesus purchased the NO CONDEMNATION for God’s people in Ps 34:22 (compare Rom 8:1) and the wonderful end of the story for believers.
Optional Rom 11:13-36 – Rom 9-11 is one of the most debated sections in Scripture. But notice how Paul (inspired by God) finishes this section – overflowing praise to our great God, whose ways are FAR above ours!
Optional Proverbs 20:10-14 – Both Prov 20:10, 14 remind us that God is watching our business practices and cares very much that we have integrity and honor HIM in ALL our dealings.