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Leviticus 22:11 If the Priest Buys Any Soul He Shall Eat Of It

Posted by adventbiblestudy on January 2, 2013

Study methods explained. Bible stories, studies with links between Old and New Testament texts.

Learning about prophecies fulfilled shows how to understand all scripture.

Leviticus 22:11 NLTse However, if the priest buys a slave for himself, the slave may eat from the sacred offerings. And if his slaves have children, they also may share his food.

This text shows how important it is to pay attention to unusual statements in the Bible. Especially when it appears to say something strange or a little difficult to understand. This particular prophecy about Jesus relates to one of the most misunderstood stories in the Gospels. One in which Jesus asks a question where an answer does not seem obvious.

Mark 2:25-26 NLTse Jesus said to them, “Haven’t you ever read in the Scriptures what David did when he and his companions were hungry? (26) He went into the house of God (during the days when Abiathar was high priest) and broke the law by eating the sacred loaves of bread that only the priests are allowed to eat. He also gave some to his companions.”

One of the things many people do not realize about Mark, is the miraculous way He recorded the instructions provided for studying scripture. In Mark chapter 2 we find Jesus asking a question, pointing to an obvious text written by Samuel, and for those paying attention, also Leviticus.

We first notice Jesus’ instructions, ” read in the Scriptures.” We see one lesson of Bible interpretation when Jesus said to them, “The Sabbath was made to meet the needs of people, and not people to meet the requirements of the Sabbath. So the Son of Man is Lord, even over the Sabbath!” (Mark 2:27-28 NLTse). We see Jesus comparing Himself to the Sabbath. This is a basic principle of Bible study. The Sabbath was made to meet the needs of the people. Jesus is Lord over the Sabbath. We cannot argue the point, Jesus came to meet the needs of the people. He is doing this by pointing them and us back to scripture, written evidence.

The lesson continues as we look at the texts Jesus referred to. We learn another lesson used in modern Bible study by looking in our Bibles. Many Bibles contain chain references which provide a list of associated texts. Chain references are also found on popular Bible study computer programs. They help us to quickly locate associated texts. In this case the chain reference leads us directly to 1 Samuel chapter 21. David is fleeing Saul with a number of men when they come to a synagogue where they ask Ahimelech the priest for food. “Now, what is there to eat? Give me five loaves of bread or anything else you have.” “We don’t have any regular bread,” the priest replied. “But there is the holy bread, which you can have if your young men have not slept with any women recently.” “Don’t worry,” David replied. “I never allow my men to be with women when they are on a campaign. And since they stay clean even on ordinary trips, how much more on this one!” Since there was no other food available, the priest gave him the holy bread–the Bread of the Presence that was placed before the LORD in the Tabernacle. It had just been replaced that day with fresh bread.” (1 Samuel 21:3-6 NLTse).

We see bread is the main topic of discussion because the word is repeated five times. We also see two phrases dealing with women, which seem out of place and hardly related to the same subject. This is designed to draw the reader’s attention, just like Jesus was trying to draw the attention of the priests to Leviticus chapter 22. If they had looked they would have found some interesting information, a direct connection to the original story, and the answer to Jesus’ question. “If any of Aaron’s descendants has a skin disease or any kind of discharge that makes him ceremonially unclean, he may not eat from the sacred offerings until he has been pronounced clean. He also becomes unclean by touching a corpse, or by having an emission of semen, (Leviticus 22:4 NLTse). We have to keep in mind, Jesus answered a question from the Pharisees, whose mind was set on the detail of not being allowed to eat the bread. Jesus knew where their interests would be directed if they did look at the original scripture.

The obvious connection shows us these texts are all converging to teach the same lesson. We see the spiritual application when we look at the actual text explaining why David and his men were allowed to eat the sacred bread reserved for only the priests and their families.

Leviticus 22:11 NLTse However, if the priest buys a slave for himself, the slave may eat from the sacred offerings. And if his slaves have children, they also may share his food.

Notice how the word slave is repeated three times. This leads us directly to the New Testament for an explanation to understand how we are freed. “Are you a slave? Don’t let that worry you–but if you get a chance to be free, take it. And remember, if you were a slave when the Lord called you, you are now free in the Lord. And if you were free when the Lord called you, you are now a slave of Christ. God paid a high price for you, so don’t be enslaved by the world. God decided in advance to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. This is what he wanted to do, and it gave him great pleasure. So we praise God for the glorious grace he has poured out on us who belong to his dear Son. He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins. He has showered his kindness on us, along with all wisdom and understanding. God has now revealed to us his mysterious plan regarding Christ, a plan to fulfill his own good pleasure.” (1 Corinthians 7:21-23, Ephesians 1:5-9 NLTse).

Christ is our High Priest who purchased us with His own blood. This is why David and His men were allowed to eat the sacred bread.


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