The beginning of 2009, I was led to study the Bible in a new way (to me). I have been writing down the Scriptures (starting at the Genesis 1), Word for Word, and studying as the Lord leads and time allows. This has been such a MAJOR blessing to me! God has revealed so many new, interesting and exciting things from His Word, that I always want to share. I haven't had time to blog, sooo ... I am going to attempt to marry blogging with my morning study. I hope I can, in some way, impart my blessings to you.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

LEVITICUS 25:44-46 ~ For Pagans Only ~

Welcome, fellow travelers.  Our stay here, in Leviticus, has been like camping in a National Park ... SO many of GOD's treasures to see and explore.  Great adventures for every day.  For a review of our last trek into  LEVITICUS 25:39-43, click here There, we learned about the LORD's merciful plan for Israelites who had become impoverished.  He provided them employment and established strict rules regarding their treatment as servants vice slaves.

You are warmly invited to stop in and share this morning's measure of manna with us.  Remember to keep in mind to whom the Lord was speaking and when (1445 BC)
Both your bondmen, and your bondmaids, which you shall have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them you shall buy bondmen and bondmaids.  Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them you shall buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land; and they shall be your possession.  And you shall take them as an inheritance for your children after you, to inherit them for a possession: they shall be your bondmen forever: but over your brethren the children of Israel, you shall not rule one over another with rigour.

OK, right away, I feel like I have a problem with understanding these verses.  Slavery, as we know, is totally unacceptable ... periodHowever, I trust the LORD implicitly, there is surely more than meets the eye here.  Our Merciful God always has a perfect reason and plan for every one of His instructions.  Prayerfully, He will grant us understanding, as we seek it with faith.  He may, however, lead us into a side study on this emotion-charged subject.  Let us see.
Here is an explanation from:  Barnes' Notes on the Bible
"Property in foreign slaves is here distinctly permitted. It was a patriarchal custom Genesis 17:12. Such slaves might be captives taken in war (Numbers 31:6 following; Deuteronomy 20:14), or those consigned to slavery for their crimes, or those purchased of foreign slave-dealers. The price of a slave is supposed to have varied from thirty to fifty shekels. See Leviticus 27:3-4, note; Exodus 21:32, note; Zechariah 11:12-13, note; Matthew 26:15, note.

It was the object of Moses, not at once to do away with slavery, but to discourage and to mitigate it. The Law would not suffer it to be forgotten that the slave was a man, and protected him in every way that was possible at the time against the injustice or cruelty of his master. See the notes at Exodus 21."

Bondmen and bondmaids were men and women, slaves/servants.  These were considered heathens from the surrounding pagan nations.  The word heathen, in Hebrew, referred to a herd of animals, flight of locusts. These were foreign nations, Gentiles.  Some of which are shown on the  chart above.


It comes to my mind, that most of these nations were debase idolaters.  Most were known for their cruelness and savage beastly ways ... renowned for their inhumane treatment of others.  I am not sure that I would even want one of them in my household.  Wow...

Click here for Biblos Comparative Commentaries.

Suggestion: One of the commentaries suggested that  Moses believed; if God wanted the slaves to be free, He would send them a deliverer as He did for the Israelites.  Could this be tied into the fact that the Jewish people are still waiting for their Messiah?

Fact: Jesus was indeed sent to deliver and set free Jews, Gentiles, criminals, the poor, and captives of ALL kinds.  So His birth, death and resurrection makes null any and every excuse for anyone to enslave another human being, since that point in time!  The Old Testament seems pretty harsh to us ... but it's lessons to us are invaluable.
:45 ~ Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them you shall buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land; and they shall be your possession.

heathens = idolators, uncircumcised, did not embrace Jewish religion (Gentiles)

children = son, builder of a family name
families = clan, circle of relatives, species, tribe,
land = land, earth
Here is another sensitive and terrifying subject these days ... slavery of children.  In today's world, God's will has been SO perverted and disregarded.  People are doing horrendous things to innocent children.  We know what GOD has to say about harming children in any way, Matthew 18:6!   There is absolutely no way that these verses, in GOD's Word, condone slavery!  However, today, and very day, women and children are stolen for trade.  Mothers sell their own babies for drugs and/or money.  This all ties into the subject of "human trafficking."

To read my previous posts on human trafficking/slavery today with links for further research:
~  Update: Human Slavery-Children for Sale


Matthew Henry comments: "Laws concerning servitude, designed to preserve the honour of the Jewish nation as a free people, and rescued by a divine power out of the house of bondage, into the glorious liberty of God's sons, His first-born."
Below: Joseph being sold ~ unknown artist
:46 ~ And you shall take them as an inheritance for your children after you, to inherit them for a possession: they shall be your bondmen forever: but over your brethren the children of Israel, you shall not rule one over another with rigour .

Barnes commented"they were not necessarily to be released in the sabbatical year nor at the Jubilee."   This suggests to me, that slaves could be released?

Gill explains, in his commentary: "Unless they obtained their liberty, either by purchase, which they might make themselves, or by the means of others, or else by a writing under their master's hand dismissing them from his service (z); or in case they were maimed by him, then he was obliged to let them go free, Exodus 21:26,


Caution, we must remember when Gill lived.  Slavery was in full swing at the time.  I tend to be more comfortable with the other commenters on this.


The second half of this verse reassures us: GOD had already delivered and freed His people from slavery.  He does not enslave His people .. not the Israelites ... nor anyone else!  He made provision for deliverance ... for slaves to be granted freedom through ransom or mercy.  This also being a picture of us, as slaves to sin, we can be delivered by the mercy of GOD and the ransom paid by Jesus.  While we cannot ransom our fellow sinners; we do have the privilege of pointing them to Jesus, Who has already paid the price.  The LORD always makes a way!

This subject deserves a much deeper study ... as I search the web, there seems to be an abundance of anti-God, anti-Bible, atheists using this very subject to slur and attempt to invalidate our GOD and the BibleSickening stuff out there.  I had to really hunt, to find just ONE intelligent, educated discussion.  Be careful out there in cyberspace, people are pushing their twisted agendas everywhere they can.
Drawing below ~ unknown artist
** I highly recommend reading this article from RBC Ministries: Why does the Bible seem to tolerate the institution of slavery?

I am SO thankful that Jesus set us free from any and all bondage!!!  That He paid the ultimate price to ransom us from the bondage of sin!  The Master signed our "freedom papers" in His Blood.  Bless Him forever!  We actually will, won't we?  How exciting!


As back then, if a slave was freed and wanted to stay and serve his/her master, they signed on for a lifetime of voluntary service.  We can relate to Paul ... being SO thankful for our release makes us want to remain bondslaves to Christ forever!

Bondservant only to Christ ... Alone!  Bless God!  What a privilege, that our Master desires for us to be in His house forever! Hallelujah!

*SO much more treasure here.  Doing a word study of "bondservant" would certainly be interesting and profitable.  I already make these visits long, so I will leave this one up to you!

Sure would appreciate your comments. :-)



Until we meet again,  जब तक हम फिर मिलेंगे  (Hindi)


I am blessed every day
with some new revelation of God's Word.
I will be sharing my measure of manna
with all who come to my "tent."
Please, let me know if you have been blessed
by the way it was prepared for you this day.
 ~Shalom~

 

Thursday, December 2, 2010

LEVITICUS 25:39-43 ~ They are MY servants!


Welcome, fellow sojourners.  We are so much enjoying camping in Leviticus 25, what a neat chapter!  When we last met, we saw that our Great and Awesome God had a very real and definite plan to relieve the Israelites that became poor.  We discovered a beautiful principle and promise that still applies to us today, as well.  Our LORD protected His people from usury and made sure no one would profit from their misfortune.  Click here: to review our last study from LEVITICUS 25:35-38.  The time and setting: Leviticus 25 was written in 1445 BC ... Main courses: Sabbath Year, and Year of JubileeGOD's laws and instructions were clearly designed to prevent such extreme poverty.  But thankfully our LORD, knows us ... so here He laid down instructions to deal with just such extreme circumstances. 

Come on in, join us, as we continue to explore this delicious chapter of God's Living Word: let's find out what He has for us in this morning's measure of manna:
LEVITICUS 25:39-43 ~ And if your brother, that dwells by you be waxen (becomes) poor, and be sold unto you; you shall not compel him to serve as a bondservant: But as a hired servant, and as a sojourner, he shall be with you, and shall serve you unto the Year of Jubilee: and then he shall depart from you, both he and his children with him, and shall return unto his own family, and unto the possession of his fathers shall he return.  For they are My servants, which I brought forth out of the land of Egypt: they shall not be sold as bondmen.  You shall not rule over him with rigour, but shall fear your God.

:39 ~ And if your brother, that dwells by you be waxen poor, and be sold unto you; you shall not compel him to serve as bondservant:

Well, right off, we see another of God's provision for a person or family that comes upon hard times.   An Israelite could "sell" himself to another Israelite for service.  He was given a job to do for a predetermined period.  But, he could not be forced into slavery, because of his poverty.  He would be provided work for provision, food and lodging.  How gracious our GOD is, always!!!

How better would our "welfare" system work, if the poor were given jobs and lodging ... instead of dollars and food stamps???!!!

neighbor --> poor =  :-(   
brother-->come stay with us =  :-)  
we have work you can do = both  :-)  :-)

 These instructions come with a WARNING and a PROMISE ... NO slave cuffs (bondage) for GOD's people!!  o--o  After all, we are children of the King!!!
:40 ~ But as a hired servant, and as a sojourner, he shall be with you, and shall serve you unto the Year of Jubilee:

The LORD admonishes the family not to treat their neighbor as a slave, but as a hired servant.  They were not make him feel like they owned him, just because he owed them for helping him.  He was to be treated like a visitor.  Boy oh boy, could employers and lenders learn a thing or two from the Bible!!!

Once you accepted this employment, you would stay with the family as a lodger or tenant, and work for them in return.  Very cool concept ... to be treated as a temporary resident in their home ... while you serve them.  Win win situation!  You would work for them up until the sound of the shofar, announcing the Year of Jubilee.

It appears that the servant's children (sons? wife?) went with him.  Unless he had children while under service?  In any case, his family and children were not owned as property either.

After the term of service, you and your children were to return to your circle of relatives ... to the property that the LORD had given to you and your family.  You always had that land, that promise, to go back to.  What a blessing!

Additionally, while you were gone from your property, you might have collected rent to let someone else use it.  So you could have had monetary provision, when you got home, as well.  That Awesome GOD of ours thinks of every.single.tiny.cdetail!  If only we will grab a firm hold on His plan for us!

I LOVE THIS!!! ... ~ heart heart heart ~ 

AHA!  And here is the real deal:  the LORD would LEND His servants out temporarily.  They were, as we are, HIS bondservants, now, eternally and ONLY!   We can never belong to anyone else!  HALLELUJAH!!!  We were delivered from "Egypt" and we are  never be slaves to anyone, except our LORD!!! 
:43 ~ You shall you shall not rule over him with rigour, but shall fear your God.

The LORD did (and does) not allow the employer to have dominion, rule, dominate, take advantage of, overbear or be cruel to you.  In fact, He warned the employers to be afraid of GOD as their Judge!

Do not touch My anointed!  The LORD forewarns those overseers of His servants:  do NOT oppress them,  crush them, break them apart ... these are MY people!!!  Oh yesssss, how reassuring!!!

I sure wish I had had this knowledge, this surety, this Scripture in my heart ... while I was still working....

WOW!!!  How differently would bosses treat their hired workers, if they received this instruction from God???!!!!  The ones that oppress and mistreat those lent to them ... will have to answer to GOD for mistreating His children! *shudder*

And vice versa!!!  If we really apprehended that, the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY lends us, His servants, out to serve others...and to provide for our physical needs through them...we might also have a different view on our employment situations!  Wow!


Bottom line
  1. We were created to serve GOD
  2. If we become impoverished ... we can, temporarily, lend ourselves out, as servants to a countryman for provision.
  3. We are not to be taken advantage of, treated as slaves, nor oppressed in any way.
  4. On the Year of Jubilee, we are to return, with our children, to our family and the land that the LORD gave us.
  5. The LORD delivered us from bondage, and we are never to be enslaved again.  
  6. We are His servants always!
This study has been so reassuring to me.  I have found a different perspective on working for wages.  I always knew we were to "do everything as if we were doing it for the LORD."  But this passage has taken me far more deeply into exactly why ....

Until we meet again, Ka dish day (Apache)


I am blessed every day
with some new revelation of God's Word.
I will be sharing my measure of manna
with all who come to my "tent."
Please, let me know if you have been blessed
by the way it was prepared for you this day.
 ~Shalom~

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

LEVITICUS 25:35-38 ~ No-Interest Loans

In Leviticus 25:1-34 the LORD gave property laws regulating what could or could not be redeemed or released in the Year of Jubilee.  In Leviticus 25:35-55, He gave laws governing hired servants and slaves during the 49 years between the Years of Jubilee.  To review our last study: click here in Leviticus 25:32-34.

Welcome friends ... come on in ... join us for a taste of this morning's measure of manna!

LEVITICUS 25:35-38 ~ And if your brother be waxen (has become) poor, and fallen in decay with you; then you shall relieve him; yes, though he is a stranger, or a sojourner; that he may live with you.  Take you no usury of him, or increase; but fear you God; that your brother may live with you.  You shall not give him your money upon usury, nor lend him your victuals for increase.  I AM the LORD your God, which brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan, and to be your God.

:35 ~ And if your brother be waxen (has become) poor, and fallen into decay with you; then you shall relieve him; yes, though he is a stranger, or a sojourner; that he may live with you.

Four Commands -- Relief of Poor Brother:
  1. If a brother becomes poor, then relieve him.
  2. You shall relieve him whether he is a Hebrew or stranger or visitor among you.
  3. Do not take interest nor crops in payment for your help.
  4. Fear God, so that your brother may live with you.
Gill, in his Exposition of the Whole Bible: describes the brother fallen into decay as: "not owing to sloth and negligence, but to unavoidable want and necessity."  He points out that relief was to be achieved by: not merely by sympathizing with him, but by communicating to him, and distributing to his necessities; holding him up that he may not utterly fall, and strengthening his hands, that he may have a supply for his present wants.


Commenter Matthew Henry says that "sometimes it is as great a charity to lend freely as to give."  I would add that sometimes it is a greater charity...
:36 ~ Take you no usury of him, or increase: but fear you God; that your brother may live with you.

No extortion ... no illegal interest on a debt was to be charged ... no bonus or percentage in addition to principal.  Bottom line: no unjust gain made off of the loan.

As God has been gracious to us, so we should be gracious to our brethren.


The LORD commands us not to profit or become rich at the expense of the poor.  We are not to take advantage of them to increase our own wealth.  HA!  Exactly the opposite of the banks and lending institutions of today ... who's main goal is exactly the opposite!


Twice God gave the reason for helping a poor brother-- that he might live among the Israelites, in Canaan, instead of being driven to another land.  Some commentators say this implied: the poor would recover and be of service to the Israelites.  Which really does make sense; so that they could become contributing citizens to the community.


This is the key reason, I believe, that our Society is lacking in relieving our World's poor.  If only we would follow GOD's instructions!  We need to strengthen the poor, so they are able take care of themselves ... so they can in turn become functioning members of our Society.  This needs to be taught in our very own families first, for an impact on the World to be felt.
Money: here, means silverDo not lend the poor your money, expecting and insisting upon a large interest for it.  Victuals: food/meat/provisions.  These necessities, you are expected to freely give.

According to Jon Courson: “Although Deuteronomy 23:20 allowed interest from a stranger; they having themselves been rescued by God when they were slaves in Egypt … the Israelites were to rescue their brothers from financial bondage with no-interest loans.  They were not to take advantage of a brother in need."
:38 ~ I AM the LORD your God,
which brought you forth out of the land of Egypt, to give you the land of Canaan, and to be your God.

*According to Dakes’ Bible Notes: Being brought forth out of the land of Egypt is referred to 4 times, just in Chapters 25-26!  Hmmmm ... I guess we still do need a reminder too, don't we?!  Eeeesh!

We are to fear our God, Who will reckon with us for all injuries done to the poor.  Do not fear them, but fear Him!  A pretty clear warning, I would say!  Woe be to those who take advantage of the poor!
Matthew Henry points out that: "The same argument is used to enforce this precept that prefaces all of the Ten Commandments: I AM the Lord, your God, which brought you out of Egypt."
This leads me to a "side-study" on the “I AM the Lord, your God”  verses that I am collecting from Deuteronomy and elsewhere in the Bible.  My personal theory is that this statement/reminder is attached to directives that have particular importance to the LORDHe stresses certain statements as warnings, stern reminders.  It is very likely that these warnings/reminders accompany situations that He knows that we are particularly vulnerable in.  So, I have begun listing these as I find them.

I am very interested to see what truths this "side-trip" through the Bible reveals.  I will publish my findings when I have a more conclusive understanding.  In the meantime, you may want to take on this side-study yourself.  Or, you may already have a deeper understanding.  Either way, I surely would appreciate any and all input you would be willing to offer. 

Until we meet again,  Arrivaderci




I am blessed every day
with some new revelation of God's Word.
I will be sharing my measure of manna
with all who come to my "tent."
Please, let me know if you have been blessed
by the way it was prepared for you this day.
 ~Shalom~

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

LEVITICUS 25:32-34 ~ NOT FOR SALE: Levites' Cities and Suburbs






















Welcome fellow travelers and God seekers.  It is a wonderful morning for a nice warm portion of manna … the Bread of Life, the Living Word.  Let’s get right to it.

We shared our last “meal” in Leviticus 25:29-31God given laws concerning the redemption of houses within walled cities.  You can click: here to review.


This morning we will see His beautiful provision for the Levites, the tribe of His assigned priests.  Also, His marvelous grace towards the children of Israel, to provide spiritual leadership for them.  Bless His heart.

LEVITICUS 25:32-34 ~ Notwithstanding the cities of the Levites, and the houses of the cities in their possession, the Levites may redeem at any time.  And if a man purchase of the Levites, then the house that was sold and the city of his possession, shall go out in the Year of Jubilee; for the houses of the cities of the Levites are their possession among the children of Israel.  But the fields of the suburbs of their cities may not be sold, for it is their perpetual possession.

:32 ~ Notwithstanding the cities of the Levites, and the houses of the cities of their possession, the Levites may redeem at any time.


The LORD had given specific cities to the Levites, descendants of Levi, His priests, as their inheritance.  The houses within those cities were divided among the Levites.

NOTE:  A city was defined as: a place guarded by waking or a watchThis reminds us: of the importance of praying for our churches, ministers of the Gospel, their homes, and our schools ... we need to keep them under guard by a prayer watch!

To continue: none of the dwellings within the Levitical cities/towns could ever be sold permanently.  The LORD made provision for there always to be Levitical presence among the Israelites.  GOD, in His infinite Wisdom, knew that we will always need a Godly center of leadership.

So, all city property of Levites was redeemable at any time, period.  No one else was to settle in to one of their city dwellings for more than 49 years (not so long, back then) … the original owner, or any Levite (? they would all be kin), could come and buy it back, at any moment.  *NOTE: I will be interested to see: were the leases on these houses limited to other Levites?  or open to anyone?

:33 ~ And if a man purchase of the Levites, then the house that was sold and the city of his possession, shall go out (revert) in the Year of the Jubilee; for the houses of the cities of the Levites are their possession among the children of Israel.

If a Levite did not redeem his house within the 49 years after the sale, then the house would automatically revert back to the orignal owner on the 50th year, the Year of Jubilee.

The Levites had no possessions of their own, except the cities and suburbs.  They gave it all up to serve the LORDGOD told them and showed them, that they were under His Personal care and protection.  This reminds us that, today, maybe more than ever, Gospel ministry needs support and protection!

How assuring this is.  Even in our times, when so many of our “Levites,” our Christian spiritual leaders, and their houses, towns and cities are being persecuted all over the world.  GOD made it very clear, that He will never allow the take over and/or occupation of strangers stay in or on the land of His priests forever.  It WILL be returned, finally and completely, at the Great Jubilee.  Hallelujah!

*Fascinating side-NOTE: Israel, יִשְׂרָאֵֽל׃ in Hebrew, means:  "God strives," another name of Jacob and his descendants ... the word comes.from combining sarah and el ... yis·ra·'el.


34 ~ But the fields of the suburbs of their cities may not be sold; for it is their perpetual possession. 

Suburbs” … so this is where the name came from???  I never would have guessed this word was Biblical! 

HA!  Here is what I found: migrash  (mig-rawsh') a suburb: "i.e. open country where flocks are driven from pasture; hence, the area around a building, or the margin of the sea -- cast out, suburb."

Well, we still have sheep in our open pastures ... so I guess, we are officially in the, suburbs!  The picture above is very close to my house.  And sheep are driven through here!  Still shaking my head at the Biblical derivation!  Awesome!  GOD always shows us new things, in His WordHis Living Word is old and new and always true!



The LORD gave the Levites these suburbs that were to reach two thousand cubits on every side of their cities: Numbers 35:5.  This open land was to be held in common, no one priest had a particular portion.  Fruit, produce, meat, clothing, materials, wood, water, everything from these fields was meant to be provision for the maintenance and sustenance of the LORD's priests.  The pastures also fed their livestock.  Therefore, these fields were never be withheld from the Levites, no matter what … forever.

But, for some reason, the houses inside the city or town could be sold to anyone?  I will be anxious to learn more! 

*NOTE: Biblos' Comparison of Bible Commentaries, on this study, starts here!  A very rich resource; just in case, you have room for more ... or get hungry later!  What an awesome Book is Leviticus!  Marvelous manna for today indeed!

Until we meet again,  Ke Akua pu a hui hou ~ God Bless you and see you later!

I am blessed every day
with some new revelation of God's Word.
I will be sharing my measure of manna
with all who come to my "tent."
Please, let me know if you have been blessed
by the way it was prepared for you this day.
 ~Shalom~

Sunday, November 7, 2010

LEVITICUS 25:29-31 ~ Short Sales in the Cities!

Welcome, fellow sojourners of the narrow way.  We have recently been camping at Leviticus 25The law of this chapter concerns the lands and estates of the Israelites in Canaan.  We last visited: Leviticus 25:25-28, where the LORD made merciful provisions for a person who became too poor to redeem his land.  You may review our last get together by clicking here: Redeem the Country!

Make yourself comfortable.  We have wonderful fresh manna this morning to share.  His Living Word is always delicious to our lips and nutritious to our souls.  How sweet are your words to my taste! yes, sweeter than honey to my mouth! ~ Psalms 119:103

LEVITICUS 25:29-31 ~ And if a man sell a dwelling house in a walled city, then he may redeem it within a whole year after it is sold; within a full year may he redeem it. And if it be not redeemed within the space of a full year, then the house that is in the walled city shall be established for ever to him that bought it throughout his generations: it shall not go out in the Jubilee. But the houses of the villages which have no wall round about them shall be counted as the fields of the country: they may be redeemed, and they shall go out in the Jubilee.

Property within a walled city could be redeemed only during the first year.


OK, so if I sell my house in the city and decide that I want it back. Then, from that day on, within the first year, either I or a close relative of mine can buy it back.  The very next day after the year was up, I would lose my rights to the property forever.  The buyer would be able to keep the property as his own, permanently.  Jewish law even made provisos, in case the buyer hid on the last day of the year to avoid getting his place redeemed.  Tricky little humans ...

City dwellers had only one year to redeem property inside the city walls.  Evidently, city property had to be settled much quicker.  Hmmm, let's look into why …

Jon Courson says, in his Application Commentary on the Old Testament: “The rabbis teach that, in this, God is encouraging people not to live in the cities.  Whether or not such be the case, the fact remains that with a higher density of people comes greater opportunity to sin. (Good point, Jon)  A higher density of believers in any given area can result in a greater degree of lethargy. (wow) That is why, as salt and light, we are most effective when we are spread out.”

Bible expositor, John Gill,  however, has a little different view.  He states that "this law was made to encourage persons to settle in walled towns, to make and keep them populous, and to make owners of them careful not to sell them...

Matthew Henry, in his Commentary on the Whole Bible, seems to agree to some degree: "This provision was made to encourage strangers and proselytes to come and settle among them. Though they could not purchase land in Canaan to them and their heirs, yet they might purchase houses in walled cities, which would be most convenient for those who were supposed to live by trade."

NOTE: Biblos is a wonderful resource for Bible study ... compare commentaries here.

In whichever case, today's cities are dense and crowded.  They often have higher crime rates and immorality is accepted, even encouraged, in many of them.  Around every corner, are temptations, traps and lures, and food to feed the lust of the eyes, the pride of life and the flesh.  It makes good sense that God would encourage shorter stays in the cities.  Everything is  concentrated into a very small area … there are dark alleys and crowds of people, large corporations and even, yes ... huge churches in which to hide.

I have always felt that way about cities … but until now, I never realized that the LORD might actually have discouraged city living for His children, unless they were to live by trade.
Awesome!!!

So, if the seller was to change his mind about the sale, he had to act quickly. If he, or his near kin, did not redeem it by the last day of the year following the sale; then the dwelling became the real and permanent property of the buyer and his descendants.  It would not be returned in the Year of Jubilee.  This is the first exception to automatic redemption at Jubilee that is mentioned.  The dwelling would not be returned after the 365th day.

I imagine that profit could also be made from the houses in the city.  It would be difficult for someone to buy a city dwelling, perhaps establish a business there … and then have the building repossessed by the original owner.  And obviously God intended some to stay in the cities … for He provided opportunities to gain permanent title to the houses.

Note: fruit was planted, grown and harvested only in the fields.  Probably much more treasure to be found here!

Calvin's commentary is here: Aha!  Calvin believed, as I had noted, that houses yield no fruit.  It was "more tolerable" to live without a house in the city than without fruit from the field.  He also discusses the provision for business in the city.

John Gill in his Exposition of the Bible says: "for houses were not like lands, the gift of God, and held under Him, but were built by men, and were their absolute property, and therefore they could dispose of them."


Matthew Henry, in his Commentary, agrees: "A difference was made between houses in walled cities, and lands in the country, or houses in country villages.  Houses in walled cities were more the fruits of their own industry than land in the country, which was the immediate gift of God’s bounty..."

He also stated:  "This provision was made to encourage strangers and proselytes to come and settle among them. Though they could not purchase land in Canaan to them and their heirs, yet they might purchase houses in walled cities, which would be most convenient for those who were supposed to live by trade. But country houses could be disposed of no otherwise than as lands might."

The houses in the “suburbs” were treated like the fields in the country. Ahh yes, the reason everyone still flocks to the suburbs … a better quality of life!  Open spaces, clear skies, fresh air, peace, quiet, beautiful views, slower pace, less traffic, less distractions, safe environment.  And most importantly, the LORD had blessed the land in the country, and commanded it to yield the crops and fruits vital for health and life!

Something to consider: What about “gated” communities of our day?  These communities are usually designed to be more secure with less of usual city drawbacks.  But, would God still have considered them as “walled villages”???

Something to consider:  The city dwellings were, a more secure investment for business men, were they not?  Houses and property outside of the city were redeemable for 49 years after you bought it.  So you could never really be settled on a permanent basis, unless you were the original owner.  In the city, there was a chance to receive permanent title by default.

The LORD provided land for every one of the Israelites.  Your rightful inheritance would be the land that could not ever be taken permanently from you.  Even if you couldn’t afford to keep it up, you could lease it out and get it back every for free, every 50 years!  Of course, then, what do you do, when your property is leased out?  Go live in the city and pay rent?  Or perhaps take a road trip, by camel, to other village or cities?  *smile* … many possibilities, I guess.

Matthew Henry states: "This provision was made to encourage strangers and proselytes to come and settle among them. Though they could not purchase land in Canaan to them and their heirs, yet they might purchase houses in walled cities, which would be most convenient for those who were supposed to live by trade. But country houses could be disposed of no otherwise than as lands might."

One thing is sure ... the LORD, as always, made perfect provision for every person and every little detail of their lives.  For the city folk and the country folk alike ... for trade and for agriculture.  What love our Creator has for his creation!  What perfect plans He has for us!

This lesson also reminds us that our only truly permanent residence is in heaven, which is our Rightful Inheritance.

It turned out to be an exciting adventure gathering the manna today.  I had to consult both contemporary and historical sources to gain a better understanding of these three little Scriptures.  But, what a rich and delectable meal came forth!  There are still many "side dishes" that could be explored.  Plus, along the way ... I also discovered more uses for the fantastic Biblical Research Library ~ Biblos!

Don't we so often find extra treasures "along the way?"  What a beautiful day today!  This is the day that the LORD has made, let us be glad and rejoice in it! ~ Psalm 118:24

Until we meet again, Zàijiàn -  再见

I am blessed every day
with some new revelation of God's Word.
I will be sharing my measure of manna
with all who come to my "tent."
Please, let me know if you have been blessed
by the way it was prepared for you this day.
 ~Shalom~

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

LEVITICUS 25:25-28 ~ Redeem the Country! A good ol' country song!

In Leviticus 25:23-24, the LORD made it very clear that He rightfully and eternally owns all land.  Therefore, the land could never be sold forever ... because we are just temporarily "visiting" His land with Him.  What a beautiful and awesome assurance ... to remember and take into our hearts! 

On that note, please come in and visit our "tent" for awhile.  For this morning's measure  of manna, we will be presented with the LORD's very first introduction to the concept of a kinsman redeemer.  Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! ~ Psalms 34:8 

LEVITICUS 25:25-28 ~ If your brother be waxen (has become) poor, and has sold away some of his possession, and if any of this kin come to redeem it, then he shall redeem that which his brother sold.   And if the man has none to redeem it, and himself is able to redeem it; then let him count the years of the sale thereof, and restore the overplus unto the man to whom he sold it; that he may return unto his possession.  But if he not be able to restore it to him, then that which is sold shall remain in the hand of him that has bought it, until the year of jubilee: and in the jubilee it shall go out, and he shall return unto his possession. 


According to the Oriental law of kinship, the land of a poor man could be redeemed by himself or his nearest relation, anytime during the period between the Years of Jubilee. 

This concept of kinsman redeemer was:
  1. Introduced here
  2. Illustrated in Boaz ~ Ruth~Chapters 2-4
  3. Fulfilled in Jesus Christ
 


If a man has no kin to redeem his property after he sold it, then he has the right to buy it back himselfIf he is not able to buy it back, then he would have to wait, until the Year of Jubilee, when his property would be returned to him.

:27 ~ Then let him count the years of the sale thereof, and restore the overplus unto the man to whom he sold it; that he may return unto his possession.












The redemption price was determined by the number of years remaining, from the date of redemption to the next Jubilee.  At that time, all such property was returned to original owner and he could return to his land.  What a happy day!!!

Even though a man and his family might have fallen on hard times ... looking forward, there was always hope ... Jubilee was coming ... and they knew that they would get back everything GOD had given them!  What an assurance for them.  But, wait ... we have even a more Blessed Assurance!  Our Redeemer lives and He has promised us a Grand and Ultimate Jubilee!



If neither the seller nor the seller's kin could redeem it, then the land remained in the possession of the buyer until Jubilee.  This gave a poor man another chance, an opportunity to regain his property and go back to his home ~ something he could never do otherwise.

Sound familiar?   Just as we can never redeem ourselves by our own hands ~ thanks to GOD, we have a Kinsman Redeemer ... Jesus Christ! ... He paid the full redemption price for us ... and at Grand Jubilee, we will be going Home!!!!

NOTEהַיֹּובֵ֑ל  hai·yo·v·vel 3104 ~ The Hebrew word for Jubilee means: a ram, a ram's horn, a wind instrument!
  1. Jesus is the Ram that took our place: The Horn speaks of Salvation.
  2. Jesus, our Kinsman Redeemer paid the redemption price for our sin.
  3. One day, we will hear the sound of the great Ram's Horn from heaven, announcing the Great Jubilee!
Jubilee:  a shadow of what was to happen in Joshua 6:5 and what will happen 1Thessalonians 4:16-17!

Oh, and there is SO much more treasure here!  The Living Word of God so beautifully ties together the past, the present and the future!

Hallelujah!  Our Redeemer Lives!

Until we meet again, swatdee  ~  สวัสดี


I am blessed every day
with some new revelation of God's Word.
I will be sharing my measure of manna
with all who come to my "tent."
Please, let me know if you have been blessed
by the way it was prepared for you this day.
 ~Shalom~