Nehemiah Chapter 10, Records The Covenant of Faith and Those Who Committed to Follow The Torah

beemanlee's picture

In this Chapter of Nehemiah we will read about all of those who by Faith chose to follow all of what The Torah Teaches. The Laws, that were neglected and they gave their pledge to walk in them and uphold all of them. The Spirit of Repentance(Teshuvah) follows with the resolve of Nehemiah The Governor, Zedekiah and The People, to Change their old ways of neglect, and Renew their Spiritual Connection to The Holy Land.

First there is a list of 83 signatories of The Covenant of Faith(The Bris Amanah) with a seal. The Temple tax is established as one-third shekel because of the economy, down from Exodus 20:13-14 of one-half shekel, which was the same later is in New Testament Times.

It brings up The Oath, Intermarriage and The Sabbath. The Mitzvos, The Wood Offerings, The Firstborn, The First of Your Dough(Challah) and The First Fruits(Terumah) and Tithing.

beemanlee's picture

Nehemiah 10:35, The First Fruits

In our verse we will be reading about The First Fruits of Harvest which The People received from G-d's Bounty from His Land.

Lets us read Nehemiah 10:35, from The King James Bible,

V35 And to bring the first fruits of our ground, and the first fruits of all fruit of all trees, year by year, unto The House of The L-RD:

The First Fruits are exactly what the word implies and it is that which G-d has required The People who were owners of Orchards/Gardens/Fields to present unto G-d from The First Fruits of their Harvest according to Numbers 28:26, from The King James Bible

V26 Also in the day of the first fruits, when ye bring a new meat offering unto The L-RD, after your weeks [be out], ye shall have an holy convocation; ye shall do no servile work:

The First Fruits are the crops that first bloomed and were the first picked and taken to The Temple of G-d, in recognition of The Land that belongs to G-d.

The words "First Fruits" is very significant and in Hebrew. When it is all together is called bikkurim. The First Fruits, בִּכּוּרֵ֣י, bik·ku·rei, from Strong's Hebrew #1061, bik-ku-rei or bik-ku-wr, bik-koor, first fruits, from bakar, Strong's Hebrew #1069, a primitave root, to burst the womb, i.e. to cause to bear fruit of a woman or a tree, a birthright, The First Borne. First Grain, the first-fruits of the crop; first ripe figs, it can be figuratively, hasty fruit.

Strong's Commentary points out three different things about The First Fruits of Hebrew #1061 bikkuwr from #1069, bakar, The Primitive Root: 1. It is G-d's Ownership and His Sovereignty over Nature that The First Fruits of the grain or the fruit that was harvested was to be offered to G-d. 2. The Bread of The First Fruits was bread made of the first harvested grain and presented to G-d at Pentecost, from Leviticus 28:20. 3. The Day of The First Fruits was Pentecost from Numbers 28:26.

And from Barnes' Notes on The Bible;

The festival offering at the season of first-fruits was to be offered on one day only; and was the same with that of the new moon and Passover. It nearly though not entirely accords with the sacrificial offering prescribed in Leviticus 23:18.

Ezra and The People who returned from Babylon now promised to observe as a Biblical Obligation this requirement of Offering The First Fruits unto G-d at Pentecost. This was Ezra's way of Re-Sanctification of The Land of Israel and giving G-d The First Fruits. Even though not all of The Jews had returned to The Land, Ezra was Sanctifying that portion of The Land that was being used by The People who had Returned to Their portion of The Land and was not all of The land of Israel.

And from Jewish Scholar Metzudos, The People vowed to bring The First Fruits of The Holy Land to The Temple which was a requirement of Deuteronomy 29:2, to ...take from the first of all the fruit of The Land...

The Jewish farmer would identify the first buds of spring with a mark or a tag as they started to bloom and develop in the field or orchard. After The Harvest he then would bring the tagged fruit to The Temple and give The First Fruits to The Kohen. After proper ceremony, The Kohen would then eat of The First Fruits within the confines of The Temple in Jerusalem. From Deuteronomy 26:1-12, The Offerings of First Fruits and The Tithes, describes the process and reasons. It was so The People would be able to Rejoice in every good thing which G-d has Provided for them with. This is G-d's Blessing to The People of Judah and Benjamin and what He will do in return for observation of His Requirements of His People, to live in The Land of Israel and in Holiness for what is required of them.

This can also be understood by us today as both Jews and Christians as part of The Israel of G-d. As we keep G-d's Laws by our doing in Love for Him and also towards our neighbors, we are fulfilling all of what G-d requires.

What G-d has required of The Remnant is for us to be a Holy Nation that lives by doing what G-d requires of us to do. That The Gentile Church has been grafted as Gentiles unto The Hebrew Roots found in The Old Testament. The Scriptures points to both The Fig Tree and The Olive Tree as identifiers of G-d's Ways to be lived out in life. The Two different trees both produce Fruit in their season.

We as Christians today are now partakers within G-d's Kingdom. We don't live in The Holy Land, but by identification, as Son/ Daughters of G-d, we are G-d's People and thus we should take the first of what we have produced or made and offer it unto G-d as our Offering of First Fruit unto Him.

We must remember Pentecost. It was on this day that The Promised Comforter was given to those who by Faith in God's Grace receive their Salvation and their Redemption. It was because of Yeshua(Jesus) and His Righteousness in offering of Himself as our substitute and payment for our death.

G-d requires all of us who are sons/daughters of Adam and Eve, who sin and rebel from G-d's Ways of Life, to die because of our choice.

Because of G-d's Redemption Plans, our Salvation that is from G-d's Provision, brings to all of mankind, the ability to be Redeemed from Spiritual Death and the grave. By our Confession of sin and rebellion unto G-d, brings Spiritual Life that is forever with G-d in our turning unto Him and doing His Way.

More could be said about The First Fruits, but most of this is aligning our hearts with G-d heart. It is about our doing in our daily lives that points out who we are to G-d. G-d looks at our hearts intent. When we have no ulterior motives and are doing what G-d has said to do, we then receive Joy from G-d in our walk for Him. This causes us to Rejoice and give Praise in Worship unto G-d, and we then fulfill The desires of why He created us from The Beginning.

We were created to have Fellowship with G-d!