2018-05-16 / Religion

Accept the divine provisions offered by the Lord

Sunday School Lesson
Rev. James Temples

Leviticus 25

It is easy for one to grasp the idea that “The Creator is the owner.” This fact reaches into all areas of life, where any kind of creativity is being accomplished. The divine record is quite clear — “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Genesis 1:1. There are those who would dispute this divine declaration. The only grounds that they can claim is that of supposition and unfounded theory

When God called the man, Abram — later known as Abraham — this man was given an divine promise. “Now the Lord said unto Abram, Get the out thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee…” Genesis 12:1. Later, God spoke to this man in a direct manner — “I am the Lord that brought thee out of Ur of the Chaldees, to give thee this land to inherit it.” Genesis 15:7.

This promise of the granting of this land was renewed with the son of Abraham, Isaac, and, also, to his grandson, Jacob. This promise was not a forgotten transaction, even though it was centuries before it was fulfilled.

The offspring of Jacob were slaves for centuries in the land of Egypt. In all of these years, the Promise was not forgotten by our Heavenly Father — the creator of the universe. The man, Moses, was sent to Egypt with the directive of delivering these people from their bondage. After major plagues, “the Egyptians were urgent upon the people, that they might send them out of the land in haste.” Exodus 12:33.

These former slaves were led by Moses to the base of Mount Sinai. At this location, God formed these loosely held tribes into the nation of Israel. The Promised Land — the land of Canaan — was only a vision in the minds of these former slaves. The fact of land ownership — actually managers of the Godordained promise — was a new concept to them. They needed detailed instruction regarding the fact and use of that which they would know, eventually, in reality.

The first order of divine instruction was the giving of the Ten Commandments. Exodus 20:3-17. These Eternal laws formed the basis for the civil And moral law of that land. These laws continue to form the basis for civil law in many countries of the world.

Since the land belonged — and continues to belong to — Jehovah, the divine landlord gave instructions to his managers. At the time of the giving of these directives, these people were only months out of slavery. These directives had little personal meaning to the individuals.

The economy of the Promised Land would be base — mainly on agriculture and animal husbandry. These people needed direct instructions regarding the managing of their resources.

The harvesting of the crops was to be done with a single thought in mind — God is the owner. They would give him the “first fruits.” This time of celebration, also, carried an element of the need for personal forgiveness of sin.

Their measure of time was based on seven year cycles. Since each week had a “sabbath” of rest, the land was to know this same pattern. “And the Lord spake unto Moses in Mount Sinai, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When ye come into the land which I give you, then shall the land keep a sabbath unto the Lord. Six years shalt thou sow thy field, and six years thou shalt prune thy vineyard, and gather in the fruit thereof; But in the seventh year shall be a sabbath of rest unto the land, a sabbath for the Lord: thou shalt neither sow thy field, nor prune thy vineyard.” Leviticus 25:1-4.

The divine instruction gave an answer to many questions. “That which groweth of its own accord of thy harvest thou shalt not reap, neither gather the grapes of thy vine undressed (left unpruned): for it is the year of rest unto the land.” Leviticus 25:5. The explanation would help the people who first heard the directive. “And the sabbath (rest) of the land shall be meat (food) for you; for thee, and for they servant, and for thy maid, and for thy hired servant, and for thy stranger that sojourneth with thee, And for thy cattle, and for the beast that are in thy land, shall all the increase thereof be meat.” Leviticus 25:6, 7.

The divine plan included provision for centuries to come. “And thou shalt number seven sabbaths of years unto thee, seven times seven years; and the space of seven sabbaths of years shall be unto thee forty and nine years. Then thou shalt cause the trumpet of the jubilee to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the day of atonement shall ye make the trumpet to sound throughout the land.” Leviticus 25:8, 9.

This eternally designed and directed action — ceremony — carried special significance in the Jewish calendar. “And ye shall hallow (make holy) the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof: it shall be a jubilee unto you; and ye shall return every man unto his possession, and ye shall return every man unto his family.” Leviticus 25:10. The word, “jubilee,” indicates a joyful shout, or a shout of joy.

The sounding of this trumpet of jubilee indicated that all land was to be returned to the original family, and all Jewish slaves would be set free. At that time all debts would be cancelled, giving every individual a chance for “another start.” The directive continued in specific details — “A jubilee shall that fiftieth year be unto you: ye shall not sow, neither reap that which growth of itself in it, nor gather the grapes in it of thy vine undressed. For it is the jubilee; it shall be holy unto you: ye shall eat the increase thereof out of the field.” Leviticus 25:11, 12.

This system of the law made provision for a life of “new beginnings.” Under the New Covenant, when a person accepts the divine provisions, provided by our Lord, this one is “born again.” John 3:5, 7. If you do not know this personal experience, please accept Jesus Christ into your life, today. John 3:16.

Rev. James C. Temples’ Sunday School Lesson has appeared in the Early County News each week since 1967. A native of Early County, Rev. Temples taught in public schools 32 years and 10 years at Southeastern College of Assemblies of God, in Lakeland, Fla. He also served as pastor and evangelist during those years. He can be contacted at P. O. Box 1484, Swainsboro, GA 30401; 478- 299- 2068. Email: temples_ james@yahoo.com

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