02/21/2018 — Leviticus Chapters 24-25

A couple of Observations:

The first:    Have you ever read Leviticus 24:5 and noted that each loaf of bread was to be made from two-tenths of an ephah 0f the finest flour.   When you look at the footnote – that equates to about 7 pounds of flour per loaf.  I never realized that the loaves would have been that large.

My second observation — Leviticus 25 presents the concept of the “Year of Jubilee” — which should have occurred every 50 years once the Israelites “entered the land I am going to give you.”

I think commentator William Bauer captures the elements of the Jubilee Year when he writes:

Thus there are three distinct factors constituting the essential features of the Jubilee Year: personal liberty, restitution of property, and what we might call the simple life.

1. Personal Liberty:  The 50th year was to be a time in which liberty should be proclaimed to all the inhabitants of the country.  The law was intended to benefit all, the masters as well as the servants. They should never lose sight of their being brothers and citizens of theocratic kingdom. They owed their life to God and were subject to His sovereign will. Only through loyalty to Him were they free and could ever hope to be free and independent of all other masters.

2. Restitution of Property:  The crowning feature, though, was the full restitution of all real property in the Jubilee Year. The primary object of this regulation was, of course, the reversion of all hereditary property to the family which originally possessed it, and the reestablishment of the original arrangement regarding the division of the land.

3. The Simple Life:   The Jubilee Year, being the crowning point of all sabbatical institutions, gave the finishing touch as it were to the whole cycle of sabbatic days, months and years. It is, therefore, quite appropriate that it should be a year of rest for the land like the preceding sabbatic year. It follows, of course, that in this instance there were two years, one after the other, in which there should be no sowing or systematic ingathering. Nobody can deny that this afforded ample opportunity to develop the habit of living within very limited means. “What shall we eat the seventh year?” The answer is very simple and yet of surpassing grandeur: “Then I will command my blessing upon you,” etc. Nothing was expected of the people but faith in Yahweh and confidence in His power, which was not to be shaken by any doubtful reflection.

 

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