June 15, 2015: Daily Bible Reading with Commentary for Leviticus 4-6
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Context: Chapter 4 looks at the offerings required for sinning unintentionally for different people: the Priest, the Congregation, the Ruler, and the Common People. Everyone is required to bring an offering to the Lord. Jesus would eventually become the ultimate offering for all sinners. Chapter 5 discusses the trespass offering. Trespass means to not invade the rights of others, man or God. Some examples of trespass sins are given at the beginning of chapter, such as sinning by omission (failing to tell the whole truth), coming into contact with something unclean (how much of the world we interact with everyday is unclean?), and not being careful with our promises. Ignorance of law was no excuse not to provide an offering. Repentance is expected, especially once we become aware of our sin. Chapter 6 provides instructions on personal restitution, as well as instructions to the priests for burnt offerings, grain offerings, and sin offerings.
World History: Today, when a crime is committed, a fine is paid (if not too serious) or time is spent in jail (if serious). In the Old Testament, they did not have prisons and jails. Instead, restitution to the victims, not the state as in our judicial system, is required to restore the community to harmony. This type of judicial system required a community devoted to the Lord and upholding His laws. When people turned away from the Lord, the judicial system failed.