Uniform Adult Sunday School Lesson for May 13, 2018
To give God our first and best
Background: Leviticus 2:14; 23:9-22
Leviticus 23:9-14, 22 (CEB)
9 The Lord said to Moses: 10 Speak to the Israelites and say to them: When you enter the land that I am giving you and harvest its produce, you must bring the first bundle of your harvest to the priest. 11 The priest will lift up the bundle before the Lord so that it will be acceptable on your behalf. The priest will do this on the day after the Sabbath. 12 On the day the bundle is lifted up for you, you must offer a flawless one-year-old lamb as an entirely burned offering to the Lord. 13 The accompanying grain offering must be two-tenths of an ephah of choice flour mixed with oil, as a food gift for the Lord, a soothing smell. The accompanying drink offering must be a quarter of a hin of wine. 14 You must not eat any bread, roasted grain, or fresh grain until the exact day when you bring your God’s offering. This is a permanent rule throughout your future generations, wherever you live. . . .
22 When you harvest your land’s produce, you must not harvest all the way to the edge of your field; and don’t gather every remaining bit of your harvest. Leave these items for the poor and the immigrant; I am the Lord your God.
“Speak to the Israelites and say to them: When you enter the land that I am giving you and harvest its produce, you must bring the first bundle of your harvest to the priest.” (Leviticus 23:10)
The Book of Leviticus has many enemies today, it has been stigmatized as a “bloody book” as antiquated and as unhistorical. However, it is also the “gospel” of the Old Testament. It is the first book that Jewish boys are told to read.
Historically it was probably written by Moses during the time after the completion of the tabernacle at Mt. Sinai.
The purpose of the book, is to teach sinful men, how to have a relationship with a
Holy God. Each sacrifice and holy day point us to the Christ in the New Testament.
In Moses time, God communicated through the tribe of Aaron and Moses, which was the tribe of Levy
Offerings offered without going through a Levitical Priest, were not accepted. The reason for that was there were conditions and practises that the priest had to obey that qualified them to be an intermediary between man and God.
One cannot help but notice, that the offering is to take place on the same day of the week as the resurrection, (11 The priest will lift up the bundle before the Lord so that it will be acceptable on your behalf. The priest will do this on the day after the Sabbath.) The pureness of the offerings and being the first fruits also speaks of Christ.
In much the same way as Christ teaches us through the beatitudes, God instructs the Israelites to be generous to the poor and the Aliens in the land. A fact that was important in the story and Book of Ruth.
What would be the best way for a Holy, Righteous God to communicate with mankind that is selfish and sinful? While we can never be as pure and holy as God, He has provided a way through the sacrifice of His only begotten Son and the blood He shed and victory achieved by raising Him from the dead. Our choice is to accept or reject that gift, our faith is counted as righteousness when we believe.My hymn for this week is “I Need No Other Argument.” or “My Faith Has Found a Resting Place.”