The law of the Kinsman Redeemer meant that anyone in the family (a kinsman, relative) could redeem land or even a loved one. This is pictured beautifully in the book of Ruth which paints a glorious prophecy of the way Jesus redeemed the church.
The laws of blessing and cursing are given in Leviticus 26 – the Israelites couldn’t say that God didn’t make it perfectly clear, He would bless obedience, and He would punish disobedience.
Leviticus 26:3-4a (NKJV) “‘If you walk in My statutes and keep My commandments, and perform them, 4 then I will…”
…give you rain, fruit, peace in the land; I will rid the land of evil beasts, chase your enemies, look on you favorably, multiply you, set my Tabernacle among you…and ultimately the beautiful promise of v. 12:
Leviticus 26:12 (NKJV) “I will walk among you and be your God, and you shall be My people.”
And then there’s the other promise:
Leviticus 26:14–16a (NKJV) “But if you do not obey Me, and do not observe all these commandments, 15 and if you despise My statutes, or if your soul abhors My judgments, so that you do not perform all My commandments, but break My covenant, 16 I also will do this to you…”
The list of chastening is vast, leading ultimately to expulsion from the land, if the Jews persisted in defiant disobedience, but by the grace of God and His covenant relationship, they would not be utterly cast away.
It’s important for us to keep in mind that this is the Old Covenant and not the New. Although God still promises to bless obedience today, the blessings are not ultimately of this world, the health, wealth, and prosperity are primarily in the world to come (in heaven) they are eternal.
Of course, God is always ready to pardon and restore (Leviticus 26:40-43)
Warren Wiersbe summarized the chapter as follows:
Covenant (1–13). God used the word covenant eight times in this chapter. It reminded the people of their special relationship with Him and the responsibilities belonging to that relationship. If they obeyed the terms of the covenant, they would remain in the Promised Land and enjoy His blessings. God does not promise material success to His new covenant people today, but He does promise to be with us and meet our every need.
Chastening (14–39). God’s covenant included both blessing and chastening, for God will not share His goodness with rebellious children. Enjoying the gifts while insulting the Giver is both selfish and idolatrous. We should obey God, not to “deserve” His blessings or even to avoid His chastenings, but to show our love to Him and our desire to please His heart.
Confession (40–46). A gracious God always leaves the door open for restoration. That is one loving purpose of His chastening hand (Heb. 12:1–13). The people may break their promises to God (v. 15), but God will never break His promises to His people (v. 44). God forgets our sins but remembers His covenant! This is not an excuse for sin, but it is an encouragement for sinners to repent and return to the Lord.
Leviticus 27 begins with the valuation of vows, a bit easier for me to understand in the New Living Translation:
Leviticus 27:1–2 (NLT) “The LORD said to Moses, 2 “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel. If anyone makes a special vow to dedicate someone to the LORD by paying the value of that person.”
Again, Jesus predicts His cross and resurrection, and again, the guys ignore the cross in every way; a couple of them even start jockeying for position! It’s ironic, Jesus came as a complete act of humiliation and His Apostles, at this point, are only interested in exaltation. Jesus uses this as another teaching moment. He explains the fact that the way of the world is, to rule over others, but those in the Kingdom of God are called to SERVE others. As a matter of fact, if you want to be great – be a servant, and if you want to be first (the greatest), be the slave of all! Of course Jesus is our example and in every way:
Mark 10:45 (NKJV) “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”
Mark 10 closes with blind Bartimaeus teaching us how to pray – he heard there was hope that Jesus might hear him, and he cried out for mercy. They told him to be quiet, but he yelled even louder. He caught Jesus’ attention who came to him, spoke with him…and answered, by healing him (See Mark 10:52) and blind Bartimaeus was no longer blind.
Don’t ever let anyone silence you in prayer – keep crying, and crying, and crying out to God. He really is blessed and moved by persevering faith!
How would you answer Jesus’ question?
Mark 10:51a (NKJV) “…What do you want Me to do for you?”
This Psalm was most likely written for a royal wedding and is clearly Messianic in nature, referring to the Lord Jesus Christ.
Jesus is gracious, He is the Mighty One, He is majestic in battle, He is the King of kings, and He is God.
Psalm 45:6-7 is quoted in Hebrews 1:8-9 in reference to Jesus being greater than the angels (notice that Jesus is referred to as God).
The rest of this section points to the beauty of the bride desired by the King and the glory she will enjoy forever and ever. May she never look back with longing eyes towards her former family.
Proverbs 10:22 (NKV) “The blessing of the Lord makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow with it.”
When I read this passage I can’t help but think of the church of Smyrna (Revelation 2:8-9) they weren’t rich materially, but they were rich spiritually, they were truly blessed!
If you had to choose between the two (where you could have only one) – which would you choose? 1 million dollars? Or peace of mind? 2 million dollars? Or a life of love?
For the Christian, these type of riches start now (peace and love), we get glimpses, small slivers, ultimately looking forward to that day when there will be no more sorrow (Revelation 21:4).
If you have any questions or comments on today’s reading, or you’d like to share something the Lord showed you, feel free to leave a reply below. I’d love to hear from you as we grow forward in 2021.