Genesis Through Joshua- Leviticus: Overview

The Extrinsic Agents
1) Critical Viewpoint
Some critic’s claim that Leviticus was written by P (a priestly writer).
P apparently lived during the exile and after the exile. He reflected the mood of the day’s worship-ritualistic and legalistic. He claims that Leviticus wasn’t written in the time of Moses. Moses had liberation and freedom.

2) Mosaic Authorship
We believe in the inerrancy of scripture so we believe that Moses was the author.

3) The sources
1:1 Moses received revelations. Some of the book was written form Moses’ memory.

4) The date of final composition
The book was written anytime after Sinai but before the death of Moses.

5) Redemptive historical observations
The book doesn’t deal with history. It deals with rituals and laws.
The divine King gave Moses rules to instruct Israel and form them into a national theocracy. The book gives the standards of holiness for the people.

Suggested Literary Structure
1-7 Sacrifices
8-10 Regulations for Priests
11-16 Regulations of uncleanness and cleanness
17-25 General regulations for holy leaving
26 Blessing and cursing
27 Regulations of Vows

Meanings of the Book

1) Israel’s meaning
The book tells us about the regulations of holiness. These include rules about the sacrifices and the priesthood. The book ends with a list of blessing and curses. Moses lays out the rules to get people to obey the rules.

‘The future of Israel depends on compliance with the regulations of holiness that God gave at Sinai.’

2) Our meaning
Jesus drove a wedge between the OT regulations and us. There has been a fulfilment of Levitical laws in Christ. Jesus is the hermeneutical bridge between the OT and us.

Let’s divide the book up to find the meaning:
i) OT sacrifices ceremonies
These have heavenly realities that are alive and working for us today (Hebrews 9).
OT sacrifices must be remembered to point us to the greater sacrifice that is Christ.
The tabernacle was a small replica of the heavenly tabernacle.

ii) Regulation for Holy Living
The holiness rules are not to be obeyed explicitly but are to be lived out today as principles. .
Mark 12:30-31: Christ quotes Deuteronomy chapter 6. ‘Love your neighbour as yourself’ comes from Lev 19:18. Leviticus contains the 2nd most important commandment in the whole of scripture.

iii) Blessing and Cursing (Chapter 26)
Can we be cursed as NT believers?
We believe that people who are truly regenerated will never lose their salvation. But there are many who appear Christians but inwardly they don’t know God.
The visible church is threatened with the danger of apostasy. Continuation in sin brings the curse of God (Hebrews 10:26-31). When people who have joined themselves to the covenant by profession of faith turn away they are under the curse of the covenant.

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