World Wide Study Bible
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Laws About Sacrifices
1The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 2“Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, When you come into the land you are to inhabit, which I am giving you, 3and you offer to the Lord from the herd or from the flock a food offering11Or an offering by fire; so throughout Numbers or a burnt offering or a sacrifice, to fulfill a vow or as a freewill offering or at your appointed feasts, to make a pleasing aroma to the Lord, 4then he who brings his offering shall offer to the Lord a grain offering of a tenth of an ephah22An ephah was about 3/5 bushel or 22 liters of fine flour, mixed with a quarter of a hin33A hin was about 4 quarts or 3.5 liters of oil; 5and you shall offer with the burnt offering, or for the sacrifice, a quarter of a hin of wine for the drink offering for each lamb. 6Or for a ram, you shall offer for a grain offering two tenths of an ephah of fine flour mixed with a third of a hin of oil. 7And for the drink offering you shall offer a third of a hin of wine, a pleasing aroma to the Lord. 8And when you offer a bull as a burnt offering or sacrifice, to fulfill a vow or for peace offerings to the Lord, 9then one shall offer with the bull a grain offering of three tenths of an ephah of fine flour, mixed with half a hin of oil. 10And you shall offer for the drink offering half a hin of wine, as a food offering, a pleasing aroma to the Lord.
11“Thus it shall be done for each bull or ram, or for each lamb or young goat. 12As many as you offer, so shall you do with each one, as many as there are. 13Every native Israelite shall do these things in this way, in offering a food offering, with a pleasing aroma to the Lord. 14And if a stranger is sojourning with you, or anyone is living permanently among you, and he wishes to offer a food offering, with a pleasing aroma to the Lord, he shall do as you do. 15For the assembly, there shall be one statute for you and for the stranger who sojourns with you, a statute forever throughout your generations. You and the sojourner shall be alike before the Lord. 16One law and one rule shall be for you and for the stranger who sojourns with you.”
17The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 18“Speak to the people of Israel and say to them, When you come into the land to which I bring you 19and when you eat of the bread of the land, you shall present a contribution to the Lord. 20Of the first of your dough you shall present a loaf as a contribution; like a contribution from the threshing floor, so shall you present it. 21Some of the first of your dough you shall give to the Lord as a contribution throughout your generations.
Laws About Unintentional Sins
22“But if you sin unintentionally,44Or by mistake; also verses 24, 27, 28, 29 and do not observe all these commandments that the Lord has spoken to Moses, 23all that the Lord has commanded you by Moses, from the day that the Lord gave commandment, and onward throughout your generations, 24then if it was done unintentionally without the knowledge of the congregation, all the congregation shall offer one bull from the herd for a burnt offering, a pleasing aroma to the Lord, with its grain offering and its drink offering, according to the rule, and one male goat for a sin offering. 25And the priest shall make atonement for all the congregation of the people of Israel, and they shall be forgiven, because it was a mistake, and they have brought their offering, a food offering to the Lord, and their sin offering before the Lord for their mistake. 26And all the congregation of the people of Israel shall be forgiven, and the stranger who sojourns among them, because the whole population was involved in the mistake.
27“If one person sins unintentionally, he shall offer a female goat a year old for a sin offering. 28And the priest shall make atonement before the Lord for the person who makes a mistake, when he sins unintentionally, to make atonement for him, and he shall be forgiven. 29You shall have one law for him who does anything unintentionally, for him who is native among the people of Israel and for the stranger who sojourns among them. 30But the person who does anything with a high hand, whether he is native or a sojourner, reviles the Lord, and that person shall be cut off from among his people. 31Because he has despised the word of the Lord and has broken his commandment, that person shall be utterly cut off; his iniquity shall be on him.”
A Sabbathbreaker Executed
32While the people of Israel were in the wilderness, they found a man gathering sticks on the Sabbath day. 33And those who found him gathering sticks brought him to Moses and Aaron and to all the congregation. 34They put him in custody, because it had not been made clear what should be done to him. 35And the Lord said to Moses, “The man shall be put to death; all the congregation shall stone him with stones outside the camp.” 36And all the congregation brought him outside the camp and stoned him to death with stones, as the Lord commanded Moses.
Tassels on Garments
37The Lord said to Moses, 38“Speak to the people of Israel, and tell them to make tassels on the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and to put a cord of blue on the tassel of each corner. 39And it shall be a tassel for you to look at and remember all the commandments of the Lord, to do them, not to follow55Hebrew to spy out after your own heart and your own eyes, which you are inclined to whore after. 40So you shall remember and do all my commandments, and be holy to your God. 41I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt to be your God: I am the Lord your God.”
Full instructions are given about the meat-offerings and drink-offerings. The beginning of this law is very encouraging, When ye come into the land of your habitation which I give unto you. This was a plain intimation that God would secure the promised land to their seed. It was requisite, since the sacrifices of acknowledgment were intended as the food of God's table, that there should be a constant supply of bread, oil, and wine, whatever the flesh-meat was. And the intent of this law is to direct the proportions of the meat-offering and drink-offering. Natives and strangers are placed on a level in this as in other like matters. It was a happy forewarning of the calling of the Gentiles, and of their admission into the church. If the law made so little difference between Jew and Gentile, much less would the gospel, which broke down the partition-wall, and reconciled both to God.
Though ignorance will in a degree excuse, it will not justify those who might have known their Lord's will, yet did it not. David prayed to be cleansed from his secret faults, those sins which he himself was not aware of. Sins committed ignorantly, shall be forgiven through Christ the great Sacrifice, who, when he offered up himself once for all upon the cross, seemed to explain one part of the intention of his offering, in that prayer, Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do. It looked favourably upon the Gentiles, that this law of atoning for sins of ignorance, is expressly made to extend to those who were strangers to Israel.
Those are to be reckoned presumptuous sinners, who sin designedly against God's will and glory. Sins thus committed are exceedingly sinful. He that thus breaks the commandment reproaches the Lord. He also despises the word of the Lord. Presumptuous sinners despise it, thinking themselves too great, too good, and too wise, to be ruled by it. A particular instance of presumption in the sin of sabbath-breaking is related. The offence was gathering sticks on the sabbath day, to make a fire, whereas the people were to bake and seethe what they had occasion for, the day before, Ex 16:23. This was done as an affront both to the law and to the Lawgiver. God is jealous for the honour of his sabbaths, and will not hold him guiltless who profanes them, whatever men may do. God intended this punishment for a warning to all, to make conscience of keeping holy the sabbath. And we may be assured that no command was ever given for the punishment of sin, which, at the judgment day, shall not prove to have come from perfect love and justice. The right of God to a day of devotion to himself, will be disputed and denied only by such as listen to the pride and unbelief of their hearts, rather than to the teaching of the Spirit of truth and life. Wherein consists the difference between him who was detected gathering sticks in the wilderness on the day of God, and the man who turns his back upon the blessings of sabbath appointments, and the promises of sabbath mercies, to use his time, his cares, and his soul, in heaping up riches; and waste his hours, his property, and his strength in sinful pleasure? Wealth may come by the unhallowed effort, but it will not come alone; it will have its awful reward. Sinful pursuits lead to ruin.
The people are ordered by the Lord to make fringes on the borders of their garments. The Jews were distinguished from their neighbours in their dress, as well as in their diet, and thus taught not to be conformed to the way of the heathen in other things. They proclaimed themselves Jews wherever they were, as not ashamed of God and his law. The fringes were not appointed for trimming and adorning their clothes, but to stir up their minds by way of remembrance, 2Pe 3:1. If they were tempted to sin, the fringe would warn them not to break God's commandments. We should use every means of refreshing our memories with the truths and precepts of God's word, to strengthen and quicken our obedience, and arm our minds against temptation. Be holy unto your God; cleansed from sin, and sincerely devoted to his service; and that great reason for all the commandments is again and again repeated, “I am the Lord your God.”