Tuesday, November 8, 2011

More Leviticus Thoughts

Some more thoughts on the speck of gospel gold we found in Leviticus 25 : 47 - 55.

It seems that there were some choices available to the "players" in the redemption game.
The rich foreigner, the one sold and the close relative all had decisions to make.

The rich foreigner, or creditor, could choose whether to enslave his debtor or not, or whether he would just give him more time to pay his debt.
He does not have the option, however, to decide whether or not to allow the slave to be redeemed (provided that the proposed redeemer is a close relative and has the required payment.)

The one sold, or debtor, could choose whether to allow his close relative to free him or not.
He may think he is better off with the master he has, than working for an unpleasant or over-demanding or less generous relative.

The close relative, or redeemer, could choose (providing he had enough money) whether to redeem his kinsman or not.
Although the redeemed would be required to now work for him, he may decide that is not good value for the money he might invest.

All of them have choices they can make, but only within the limits imposed by a greater law, called the Law of Jubilee.
(We'll discuss this greater, over-arching law in the next posting.)
So each of them has "limited freewill" - a brilliant oxymoron I just love to toss into these discussions.

In the broader picture, the application of Israeli life is most interesting.
As Paul suggests, what happened to them is a model or example or pattern for what God is doing universally.

The rich foreigner is Satan who has placed all of mankind into bondage to himself.
He had the choice whether to do this or not, but clearly he chose to capture Adam and all of his "estate."
He also has no choice but to free those in bondage, when the close relative redeemer arrives and pays the price.

The debtor is mankind, some of whom have chosen to be redeemed by their brother, and others who cannot or will not be redeemed.
Those who have chosen to be redeemed are required to serve their redeemer instead of their task master, their creditor.

The close relative is Jesus, who did choose to redeem all who were in bondage to Satan.

The story of the Old Testament and New is much the same.
The same God of grace operates consistently through all the ages - which is a bit of a surprise for many people.

Blessings, Barry

1 comment:

  1. Just to follow up the idea that Jesus, our kinsman redeemer, had a choice to make.
    Not only did Jesus choose to redeem all those in bondage to Satan, but he was very determined to do so.
    Luke reports
    "When the days were approaching for His ascension, He was determined to go to Jerusalem;"
    [ Luke 9 : 51 NASB ]

    This determination did not change, even though the task challenged Jesus' humanity to the extreme.
    Luke records Jesus' prayer when facing the cross
    "Father, if You are willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Yours be done."
    [ Luke 22 : 42 NASB ]

    And this determination was undergirded by Jesus understanding of the part he was to play in God's plan for all of us.
    "And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself."
    [ John 12 : 32 NASB ]

    God's plan is to redeem us all, and Jesus is very determined to see it through to completion.

    Isn't that comforting?

    Blessings, Barry


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