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2 Chronicles 23 – Jehoiada and the Crowning of Joash


2 Chronicles 23 – Jehoiada and the Crowning of Joash

A. The plan is put into practice.

1. (1-7) Jehoiada and his plan to restore Joash to the throne of Judah.

In the seventh year Jehoiada strengthened himself, and made a covenant with the captains of hundreds: Azariah the son of Jeroham, Ishmael the son of Jehohanan, Azariah the son of Obed, Maaseiah the son of Adaiah, and Elishaphat the son of Zichri. And they went throughout Judah and gathered the Levites from all the cities of Judah, and the chief fathers of Israel, and they came to Jerusalem. Then all the assembly made a covenant with the king in the house of God. And he said to them, “Behold, the king’s son shall reign, as the LORD has said of the sons of David. This is what you shall do: One-third of you entering on the Sabbath, of the priests and the Levites, shall be keeping watch over the doors; one-third shall be at the king’s house; and one-third at the Gate of the Foundation. All the people shall be in the courts of the house of the LORD. But let no one come into the house of the LORD except the priests and those of the Levites who serve. They may go in, for they are holy; but all the people shall keep the watch of the LORD. And the Levites shall surround the king on all sides, every man with his weapons in his hand; and whoever comes into the house, let him be put to death. You are to be with the king when he comes in and when he goes out.”

a. Jehoiada strengthened himself, and made a covenant with the captains: Jehoiada was a godly man who was concerned with restoring the throne of David to the line of David, and taking it away from this daughter of Ahab and Jezebel. He was also the husband of Jehoshabeath, the woman who hid the young boy Joash and protected him from the Athaliah’s massacre.

i. “The easiest thing for Jehoiada would have been to shut himself up in the temple, and leave things to take their course. The noblest thing was to come forth, and boldly confront the rampant, evil of his time.” (Meyer)

ii. “The world is full of Athaliahs, and it is not befitting that the Jehoiadas should remain at their holy rites and services if there is a paramount need for action in the world’s battlefield, in the strife against wrong.” (Meyer)

b. Then all the assembly made a covenant with the king in the house of God: From the place where the oath was made and the context of the oath, we learn that the worship of the true God was not dead in Judah. These captains could respond to their responsibility before the LORD.

c. Behold, the king’s son shall reign: This was a dramatic moment. For six years everyone believed there were no more surviving heirs of David’s royal line and there was no legitimate ruler to displace the wicked Athaliah. The secret had to be secure, because the king’s son would be immediately killed if his existence were revealed. The captains must have been shocked by the sight of this six-year old heir to the throne.

i. One reason Athaliah was able to reign for six years was that no one knew any alternative. Many people live under the reign of Satan because they don’t really know there is a legitimate king ready to take reign in their life.

d. This is what you shall do: Jehoiada had a plan to depose the wicked Queen Athaliah and to replace her with the boy king. These leaders needed to follow his plan carefully, and to do it on the Sabbath. Jehoiada chose the Sabbath for the day of the coup, because that was the day when the guards changed their shifts and they could assemble two groups of guards at the temple at the same time without attracting attention.

i. “It was a weighty work he went about, and therefore he took the wisest course, the fittest time; on the Sabbath, when the congregation met; and in the temple, wither Athaliah and her courtiers seldom came.” (Trapp)

2. (8-11) Joash is crowned king.

So the Levites and all Judah did according to all that Jehoiada the priest commanded. And each man took his men who were to be on duty on the Sabbath, with those who were going off duty on the Sabbath; for Jehoiada the priest had not dismissed the divisions. And Jehoiada the priest gave to the captains of hundreds the spears and the large and small shields which had belonged to King David, that were in the temple of God. Then he set all the people, every man with his weapon in his hand, from the right side of the temple to the left side of the temple, along by the altar and by the temple, all around the king. And they brought out the king’s son, put the crown on him, gave him the Testimony, and made him king. Then Jehoiada and his sons anointed him, and said, “Long live the king!”

a. So the Levites and all Judah did according to all that Jehoiada the priest commanded: This was an important plan that had to be followed carefully. Athaliah was a powerful enemy and many had a vested interest in her corrupt reign.

b. The spears and the large and small shields which had belonged to King David, that were in the temple of God: These men were equipped with weapons dating from the days of King David. It was fitting for these soldiers who would set the heir of David’s royal line back on the throne of Judah to use these weapons which had belonged to King David.

c. Then they brought out the king’s son: First the king’s son had to be revealed. No one could support him and he could not take his rightful throne until he was brought out before the people.

d. Put the crown on him: Next the king’s son had to be crowned. This was the public and official recognition of him as king.

e. Gave him the Testimony: The king’s son had to come with the Word of God. Joash appeared before the people holding the scrolls of God’s Word.

i. Deuteronomy 17:18 says that the king should have his own copy of the Scriptures. “This is the basis for the British custom of presenting the monarch with a copy of the Bible during the coronation service.” (Wiseman)

f. And made him king: The king’s son had to be received. He had the royal right to impose his reign, but he instead allowed his rule to be received.

g. Anointed him: The king’s son could never fulfill his office without a divine anointing.

h. And said, “Long live the king!” The king’s son received praise once he was recognized as their king.

i. We can and should follow the same pattern in our reception of Jesus Christ, the true king’s son.

ii. “Is not the spiritual condition of too many children of God represented by the condition of the Temple, during the early years of the life of Joash? The king was within its precincts, the rightful heir of the crown and defender of the worship of Jehovah: but as a matter of fact, the crown was on the head of the usurper Athaliah, who was exercising a cruel and sanguinary tyranny. The king was limited to a chamber, and the majority of the priests, with all the people, had not even heard of his existence. There needs to be an anointing, an enthroning, a determination that He shall exercise his power over the entire Temple of our Being.” (Meyer)

B. Athaliah’s demise.

1. (12-13) Her distress upon discovering the plot against her.

Now when Athaliah heard the noise of the people running and praising the king, she came to the people in the temple of the LORD. When she looked, there was the king standing by his pillar at the entrance; and the leaders and the trumpeters were by the king. All the people of the land were rejoicing and blowing trumpets, also the singers with musical instruments, and those who led in praise. So Athaliah tore her clothes and said, “Treason! Treason!”

a. When she looked, there was the king: For the usurper queen mother this was a horrifying sight. For six years she ruled because she believed there were no legitimate claimants to the throne of David. Now she sees that one son of Ahaziah – Joash, her own grandson – escaped her murderous intent.

b. All the people of the land were rejoicing: They were obviously weary of the wicked reign of Athaliah.

c. Treason! Treason! The charge was not unfounded. This was treason against her government, but it was a well-founded and godly treason against a tyrannical, wicked ruler.

2. (14-15) She and her supporters are executed

And Jehoiada the priest brought out the captains of hundreds who were set over the army, and said to them, “Take her outside under guard, and slay with the sword whoever follows her.” For the priest had said, “Do not kill her in the house of the LORD.” So they seized her; and she went by way of the entrance of the Horse Gate into the king’s house, and they killed her there.

a. Take her outside under guard, and slay with the sword whoever follows her: This was both righteous and prudent. It was a just sentence against this woman who had murdered so many, and prudent precautions were taken so she could not mount a resistance.

b. Do not kill her in the house of the LORD: As a priest, Jehoiada had a great concern for the sanctity and reputation of the temple. Yet in the place where horses entered, they killed her there.

i. “Her own treason against the true and abiding King of the nation was defeated. Thus, sooner or later, and in ways equally dramatic, the moment arrives when those who plot and plan against Heaven and righteousness, find themselves looking at the evidences of the triumph of God and of goodness over all their wickedness.” (Morgan)

C. The reforms of Jehoiada the priest.

1. (16-17) Jehoiada makes a covenant.

Then Jehoiada made a covenant between himself, the people, and the king, that they should be the Lord’s people. And all the people went to the temple of Baal, and tore it down. They broke in pieces its altars and images, and killed Mattan the priest of Baal before the altars.

a. A covenant between himself, the people, and the king: This shows that God intends that both kings and citizens have mutual obligations towards the other. Neither have absolute rights over or against the other.

i. “Along with Jehoiada’s political revolution came a corresponding religious revival – that king, priest, and citizenry would together ‘be the LORD’s people.’” (Payne)

ii. “The climax is not Joash’s coronation but a covenant renewing the nation’s relationship with God.” (Selman)

b. That they should be the Lord’s people: The covenant was between the LORD and the king and the people. They re-committed themselves to honor, obey, and serve God.

c. And all the people went to the temple of Baal, and tore it down: In 2 Kings 10 Jehu supervised the destruction of the temple of Baal in Samaria. Here the temple of Baal in Jerusalem was destroyed, and appropriately destroyed by the people.

i. They didn’t stop at destroying the building itself; they went on to destroy both the sacred objects dedicated to Baal and to kill Mattan the priest of Baal. “The execution of ‘Mattan the priest of Baal’ carried out the requirement of God’s Word directed against those who should lead others into false religion (Deuteronomy 13:5-10).” (Payne)

2. (18-21) Jehoiada restores the proper plans of worship and service.

Also Jehoiada appointed the oversight of the house of the LORD to the hand of the priests, the Levites, whom David had assigned in the house of the LORD, to offer the burnt offerings of the LORD, as it is written in the Law of Moses, with rejoicing and with singing, as it was established by David. And he set the gatekeepers at the gates of the house of the LORD, so that no one who was in any way unclean should enter. Then he took the captains of hundreds, the nobles, the governors of the people, and all the people of the land, and brought the king down from the house of the LORD; and they went through the Upper Gate to the king’s house, and set the king on the throne of the kingdom. So all the people of the land rejoiced; and the city was quiet, for they had slain Athaliah with the sword.

a. Whom David had assigned . . . as it is written in the Law of Moses: The priest Jehoiada was careful to reinstitute these practices and customs according to Biblical patterns, based on what God had revealed to David and Moses.

i. So that no one who was in any way unclean should enter: “Oh that we also had store of such porters, to keep out the unclean from holy ordinances!” (Trapp)

b. And set the king on the throne of the kingdom: After more than six dark years, now the rightful king of Judah once again ruled over his grateful people. No wonder, the people of the land rejoiced.

i. “The people’s rejoicing augmented the joy of temple worship, and sounded a note unheard since the days of Jehoshaphat (2 Chronicles 20:27). That the city was quiet was a sign of God’s blessing, which often followed special acts of faith and obedience (cf. 1 Chronicles 4:40; 22:9; 2 Chronicles 13:23; 14:4-5; 20:30).” (Selman)


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1 Chronicles 12 – David’s Army

1 Chronicles 12 – David’s Army

“Every word of this chapter carries the mind on to great David’s greater Son, and the men He gathers about Him.” (G. Campbell Morgan)

A. The devotion of David’s army.

1. (1-2) Even the Benjaminites, the tribal relatives of Saul, come to David.

Now these were the men who came to David at Ziklag while he was still a fugitive from Saul the son of Kish; and they were among the mighty men, helpers in the war, armed with bows, using both the right hand and the left in hurling stones and shooting arrows with the bow. They were of Benjamin, Saul’s brethren.

a. Now these were the men who came to David at Ziklag: David’s time in Ziklag is described in 1 Samuel 27 and 30. This was a time when David lived in the territory of the Philistines to escape the murderous pursuit of King Saul.

b. They were among the mighty men, helpers in the war, armed with bows, using both the right hand and the left: During David’s time in Ziklag, certain mighty warriors came and expressed their allegiance to David and his cause. This was especially remarkable because they were of Benjamin, Saul’s brethren and therefore had much to gain from Saul’s continued reign. They chose David over Saul because they knew that God was with David.

i. Judges 3:15 and 20:16 make special notice of left handed warriors; how much more if the soldiers can use both the right hand and the left!

2. (3-15) David’s diverse army.

The chief was Ahiezer, then Joash, the sons of Shemaah the Gibeathite; Jeziel and Pelet the sons of Azmaveth; Berachah, and Jehu the Anathothite; Ishmaiah the Gibeonite, a mighty man among the thirty, and over the thirty; Jeremiah, Jahaziel, Johanan, and Jozabad the Gederathite; Eluzai, Jerimoth, Bealiah, Shemariah, and Shephatiah the Haruphite; Elkanah, Jisshiah, Azarel, Joezer, and Jashobeam, the Korahites; and Joelah and Zebadiah the sons of Jeroham of Gedor. Some Gadites joined David at the stronghold in the wilderness, mighty men of valor, men trained for battle, who could handle shield and spear, whose faces were like the faces of lions, and were as swift as gazelles on the mountains: Ezer the first, Obadiah the second, Eliab the third, Mishmannah the fourth, Jeremiah the fifth, Attai the sixth, Eliel the seventh, Johanan the eighth, Elzabad the ninth, Jeremiah the tenth, and Machbanai the eleventh. These were from the sons of Gad, captains of the army; the least was over a hundred, and the greatest was over a thousand. These are the ones who crossed the Jordan in the first month, when it had overflowed all its banks; and they put to flight all those in the valleys, to the east and to the west.

a. A mighty man among the thirty, and over the thirty: As mentioned in the previous chapter, David’s army seemed to be organized in groups of thirty or the leaders of thirty. In the same way, a Roman centurion was supposedly a leader of one hundred soldiers.

i. “Certainly ‘Thirty’ is not to be understood in precise numerical terms, as the lists demonstrate, and either is a rather elastic number, or refers to a special kind of military leader. The word ‘Thirty’ may in fact mean an officer of some kind, either an ‘officer of the third rank’ or a member of a special three-man squad directly answerable to the king.” (Selman)

b. Mighty men of valor, men trained for battle, who could handle shield and spear, whose faces were like the faces of lions, and were as swift as gazelles on the mountains: These Gadites were impressive soldiers.

· Mighty men of valor: They were men of courage and of a warrior spirit.
· Men trained for battle: They were men who paitently received the training they needed to be mighty warriors.
· Who could handle shield and spear: They were men who were skilled in the use of their essential weapons (both defensive and offensive), with skill gained from their training.
· Whose faces were like the faces of lions: They had the calm demeanor of men who were confident in God; they had the countenance of fierce and calm warriors. “Undaunted, fierce, and terrible to their enemies. They durst look death itself in the face upon great adventures in the field.” (Trapp)
· And were as swift as gazelles on the mountains: They were mobile, active men, ready to fight wherever they were needed.

i. “The grace God can make us like them. The grace of God can make us brave as lions, so that, wherever we are, we can hold our own, or rather can hold our Lord’s truth, and never blush nor be ashamed to speak a good word for him at all times. He can make us quick and active too, so that we shall be like the roes upon the mountains.” (Spurgeon)

c. These are the ones who crossed the Jordan in the first month, when it had overflowed all its banks: As an example of the might of these men, the Chronicler records an instance when these brave warriors crossed the Jordan at a dangerous time (Joshua 3:15 and 4:18).

i. Adam Clarke on the first month: “Perhaps this was the month Nisan, which answers to a part of our March and April. This was probably before the snows on the mountains were melted, just as Jordan began to overflow its banks, it made their attempt more hazardous, and afforded additional proof of their heroism.”

ii. “These Gadites likewise furnish us with a noble example of strong devotion. When the eleven men determined to join David, they were living the other side of a deep river, which at that season of the year had overflowed its banks, so that it was extremely deep and broad. But they were not to be kept from joining David, when he wanted them, by the river. They swam through the river that they might come to David.” (Spurgeon)

3. (16-22) David receives loyal soldiers at Ziklag.

Then some of the sons of Benjamin and Judah came to David at the stronghold. And David went out to meet them, and answered and said to them, “If you have come peaceably to me to help me, my heart will be united with you; but if to betray me to my enemies, since there is no wrong in my hands, may the God of our fathers look and bring judgment.” Then the Spirit came upon Amasai, chief of the captains, and he said: “We are yours, O David; we are on your side, O son of Jesse! Peace, peace to you, and peace to your helpers! For your God helps you.” So David received them, and made them captains of the troop. And some from Manasseh defected to David when he was going with the Philistines to battle against Saul; but they did not help them, for the lords of the Philistines sent him away by agreement, saying, “He may defect to his master Saul and endanger our heads.” When he went to Ziklag, those of Manasseh who defected to him were Adnah, Jozabad, Jediael, Michael, Jozabad, Elihu, and Zillethai, captains of the thousands who were from Manasseh. And they helped David against the bands of raiders, for they were all mighty men of valor, and they were captains in the army. For at that time they came to David day by day to help him, until it was a great army, like the army of God.

a. And David went out to meet them: This shows both David’s large heart and his trust in God. He received these soldiers whom he had some reason to suspect. In his words to the sons of Benjamin, he appealed to God for wisdom and righteousness.

b. Then the Spirit came upon Amasai: Literally, this “The Spirit clothed Amasai.” This Old Testament phrase is only used Judges 6:34 and 2 Chronicles 34:20, but it may have been in the mind of Jesus when He promised that His followers would be clothed with power from on high (Luke 24:49).

i. “Amasai might be identified with Amasa, Absalom’s army commander who was later reinstated by David (2 Samuel 19:13).” (Selman)

c. For your God helps you: Whatever the sons of Benjamin knew about David, they knew that God helped David. This made them want to follow him.

i. “We have observed God’s singular and gracious care of thee, and kindness to thee, and if we should oppose thee, we should be fighters against God and his word and providence.” (Poole)

d. The lords of the Philistines sent him away by agreement: During his time in Ziklag, David attempted to fight with the Philistines against Saul and the army of Israel. The Philistine lords, fearing that David planned to defect to his master Saul, refused to allow David and his mighty men to fight in the battle (1 Samuel 27).

e. Until it was a great army, like the army of God: Under the hand of God and His servant David, these mighty men – who began as disaffected people with no where else to go (1 Samuel 22:1-2) – developed into an amazing force. David and his mighty men needed each other and were each nothing without the other.

B. The royal army at Hebron.

1. (23-37) The army of the tribes of Israel.

Now these were the numbers of the divisions that were equipped for war, and came to David at Hebron to turn over the kingdom of Saul to him, according to the word of the LORD: of the sons of Judah bearing shield and spear, six thousand eight hundred armed for war; of the sons of Simeon, mighty men of valor fit for war, seven thousand one hundred; of the sons of Levi four thousand six hundred; Jehoiada, the leader of the Aaronites, and with him three thousand seven hundred; Zadok, a young man, a valiant warrior, and from his father’s house twenty-two captains; of the sons of Benjamin, relatives of Saul, three thousand (until then the greatest part of them had remained loyal to the house of Saul); of the sons of Ephraim twenty thousand eight hundred, mighty men of valor, famous men throughout their father’s house; of the half-tribe of Manasseh eighteen thousand, who were designated by name to come and make David king; of the sons of Issachar who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do, their chiefs were two hundred; and all their brethren were at their command; of Zebulun there were fifty thousand who went out to battle, expert in war with all weapons of war, stouthearted men who could keep ranks; of Naphtali one thousand captains, and with them thirty-seven thousand with shield and spear; of the Danites who could keep battle formation, twenty-eight thousand six hundred; of Asher, those who could go out to war, able to keep battle formation, forty thousand; of the Reubenites and the Gadites and the half-tribe of Manasseh, from the other side of the Jordan, one hundred and twenty thousand armed for battle with every kind of weapon of war.

a. Of the sons of Levi four thousand six hundred: Some think that the Levites were prohibited from going to war, but this is not specifically stated. Numbers 1:47-53 says that in that census they were not to be counted among the other tribes when the men ready for war were numbered, but it does not say that they could never fight for Israel.

i. “The Levites were never prohibited from engaging in the military activity, despite their religious duties.” (Selman)

b. The sons of Issachar who had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do: Some ancient traditions attribute this understanding of the times to skill in astrology, yet there is no foundation for this speculation. Instead, we should simply see that these sons of Issachar were men who supported King Saul up until the right time, and at the right time gave their support to David.

i. “And particularly they showed this point of their wisdom at this time; for as they had adhered to Saul whilst he lived, as knowing the time was not yet come for David to take possession of the kingdom.” (Poole)

ii. “Such as well knew what was to be done, and when to do it, by a singular sagacity, gotten by long experience, rather than by skill astrology.” (Trapp)

c. Stouthearted men who could keep ranks: The idea behind the word stouthearted is that these were men of a single or whole heart in their devotion to King David. This is reflected in several other translations:

· They were not of double heart (KJV)
· To help David with undivided loyalty (NIV)
· Helped David with an undivided heart (NASB)
· Completely loyal to David (NLT)

i. “We read in verse 33 of Zebulon, whose warriors were not of a double heart; the margin says that they were ‘without a heart and a heart.’ The double-minded man is unstable in all his ways; he is not to be relied upon in his loyalty or service to his king.” (Meyer)

ii. Because they were completely committed to their king, they could also keep ranks – that is, they stayed tight in their formations even under the heat of battle. Their single devotion to their king made them able to stay together as a single unit.

iii. “Too many like to break the ranks, and do God’s work independently. Fifty men who act together will do greater execution than five hundred acting apart. . . . Unity is strength; and in their efforts to overthrow the kingdom of Satan it is most essential that the soldiers of Christ move in rank and keep step.” (Meyer)

2. (38-40) Their great support of Israel’s great king

All these men of war, who could keep ranks, came to Hebron with a loyal heart, to make David king over all Israel; and all the rest of Israel were of one mind to make David king. And they were there with David three days, eating and drinking, for their brethren had prepared for them. Moreover those who were near to them, from as far away as Issachar and Zebulun and Naphtali, were bringing food on donkeys and camels, on mules and oxen; provisions of flour and cakes of figs and cakes of raisins, wine and oil and oxen and sheep abundantly, for there was joy in Israel.

a. To make David king over Israel: This celebration came late (some seven years after the death of Saul), but it did come. The people of God together recognized David as their king. Significantly, David would not force his reign upon the people; he waited until they were willing to make David king over Israel.

i. “From the whole it appears most evident that the great majority of the tribes of Israel wished to see the kingdom confirmed in the hands of David; nor was there ever in any country a man more worthy of the public choice.” (Clarke)

b. For there was joy in Israel: Receiving their rightful and anointed king brought joy to Israel.

i. “The paragraph as a whole, however, shows that the people of God are the real heroes of the chapter. Those Israelites exemplify the principle that when God’s people become committed to one another in obedience service to God’s chosen king, they find both unity and joy.” (Selman)

ii. “The enthroning of David was the uniting of the kingdom. Herein is the secret of the unity of the Church. We shall never secure it by endeavouring to bring about an unity in thought, or act, or organization. It is as each individual heart enthrones the Saviour that each will become one with all kindred souls in the everlasting kingdom.” (Meyer)

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A. Specific occasions requiring the sin offering.

1. (Leviticus 5:1) Failing to be a truthful witness, or in being a false witness.

If a person sins in hearing the utterance of an oath, and is a witness, whether he has seen or known of the matter; if he does not tell it, he bears guilt.

a. If a person sins in hearing the utterance of an oath, and is a witness, whether he has seen or known of the matter: It wasn’t enough to merely not tell lies. God also required His people to make the truth known, so even if one merely knew about a lie, they were responsible to make the truth known.

b. If he does not tell it, he bears guilt: Therefore it was the duty of someone who was a witness to come forward and tell the truth about the matter. “In Israel all the people were to be involved in seeing that justice was done. Not to witness was a sin.” (Harris)

i. We can say that the same principle applies to our witness of Jesus Christ. It isn’t enough that we refrain from actively denying Jesus or lying about our relationship with Him. We must also take every opportunity to tell the truth about Jesus.

2. (Leviticus 5:2-3) Ceremonial uncleanness.

Or if a person touches any unclean thing, whether it is the carcass of an unclean beast, or the carcass of unclean livestock, or the carcass of unclean creeping things, and he is unaware of it, he also shall be unclean and guilty. Or if he touches human uncleanness; whatever uncleanness with which a man may be defiled, and he is unaware of it; when he realizesit, then he shall be guilty.

a. If a person touches any unclean thing: The cleansing of the sin offering was also necessary when a person became ceremonially unclean through touchingany unclean thing.

b. Whether it is the carcass of an unclean beast . . . Or if he touches human uncleanness: There were several things that might make a person ceremonially unclean. These included touching the carcass of an unclean animal or a person who was already ceremonially unclean. The sin offering was a remedy for this uncleanness.

3. (Leviticus 5:4) Swearing a false oath.

Or if a person swears, speaking thoughtlessly with his lips to do evil or to do good, whatever it isthat a man may pronounce by an oath, and he is unaware of it; when he realizes it, then he shall be guilty in any of these matters.

a. If a person swears, speaking thoughtlessly: A careless promise was still a promise before the LORD and had to be observed. If the promise was not kept it had to be atoned for by a sin offering.

b. When he realizes it, then he shall be guilty: When we are aware of our broken vows we must repent of them. It is common to make vows and promises in the Christian that are not kept, and when we see this we must repent and trust in the atoning, covering blood of Jesus to bring forgiveness.

i. Think of these common examples of broken vows:

· More time in prayer

· More intercession for others

· More devotional reading

· More intense Bible study

· More personal witness

· More faithful tithing

· Better example to others

· More patience with the children

· A vow to personal purity in sexual matters

ii. It may not be wrong to make such vows. They may be the legitimate expression of a move of the Holy Spirit in a person’s life. Yet if the vow is not kept, it must be confessed as sin and repented of.

4. (Leviticus 5:5-13) How to make the sin offering.

And it shall be, when he is guilty in any of these matters, that he shall confess that he has sinned in that thing; and he shall bring his trespass offering to the LORD for his sin which he has committed, a female from the flock, a lamb or a kid of the goats as a sin offering. So the priest shall make atonement for him concerning his sin. If he is not able to bring a lamb, then he shall bring to the LORD, for his trespass which he has committed, two turtledoves or two young pigeons: one as a sin offering and the other as a burnt offering. And he shall bring them to the priest, who shall offer that which is for the sin offering first, and wring off its head from its neck, but shall not divide it completely. Then he shall sprinkle some of the blood of the sin offering on the side of the altar, and the rest of the blood shall be drained out at the base of the altar. It is a sin offering. And he shall offer the second as a burnt offering according to the prescribed manner. So the priest shall make atonement on his behalf for his sin which he has committed, and it shall be forgiven him. But if he is not able to bring two turtledoves or two young pigeons, then he who sinned shall bring for his offering one-tenth of an ephah of fine flour as a sin offering. He shall put no oil on it, nor shall he put frankincense on it, for it is a sin offering. Then he shall bring it to the priest, and the priest shall take his handful of it as a memorial portion, and burn it on the altar according to the offerings made by fire to the LORD. It is a sin offering. The priest shall make atonement for him, for his sin that he has committed in any of these matters; and it shall be forgiven him. The rest shall be the priest’s as a grain offering.

a. When he is guilty: This really has the idea of “when he realizes his guilt.” Though a person is guilty of sin the moment he commits it, he has no idea he needs to get it right until he realizes his sin.

b. He shall confess: This was an important part of the sin offering; to confess meant one would agree with God that the sin was wrong. Confession of sin is still an important principle for clearing away sin that hinders our fellowship with God.

c. He who sinned shall bring for his offering one-tenth of an ephah of fine flour as a sin offering: Cleansing from sin was available to everyone, even if they couldn’t offer a sheep or a goat. If a man was too poor to offer two birds, even fine flour could be offered as a sin offering.

i. When we see how strongly the principle of atonement by sacrifice is emphasized in the Old Testament, many people wonder why the Jewish people today no longer make sacrifice. The answer is that they believe their good works will substitute for animal sacrifice.

ii. “Indeed, when the second temple fell, the rabbis, denied an altar in Jerusalem, came to the conclusion that gifts and prayers were as acceptable as animal sacrifice.” (Harris)

B. The Guilt Offering.

1. (Leviticus 5:14-16) The procedure for the Guilt Offering.

Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying: “If a person commits a trespass, and sins unintentionally in regard to the holy things of the LORD, then he shall bring to the LORD as his trespass offering a ram without blemish from the flocks, with your valuation in shekels of silver according to the shekel of the sanctuary, as a trespass offering. And he shall make restitution for the harm that he has done in regard to the holy thing, and shall add one-fifth to it and give it to the priest. So the priest shall make atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering, and it shall be forgiven him.”

a. If a person commits a trespass: The guilt offering was essentially the same procedure used in the sin offering, except that the guilt offering was used when someone had sinned in regard to the holy things. This spoke of some type of desecration of the tabernacle or its associated items.

b. He shall make restitution for the harm that he has done in regard to the holy thing: When holy things had been descrated in some way, a mere sin offering was not enough. Restitution was also required, paying back what was lost plus twenty percent (he shall add one-fifth to it).

I. “If one has been unfaithful in the holy things of Jehovah it is not enough that one should confess and bring a sin-offering. Restitution must be made for the wrong done; it must be put right. There was something due to God that was not rendered in it season, and things will not be right until it is rendered.” (Coates)

ii. With the guilt offering, the priest was allowed to keep the hide of a bull that was sacrificed (Leviticus 7:8).

2. (Leviticus 5:17-19) The necessity of the guilt offering even when a person did not know they had sinned in regard to the holy things.

If a person sins, and commits any of these things which are forbidden to be done by the commandments of the LORD, though he does not know it, yet he is guilty and shall bear his iniquity. And he shall bring to the priest a ram without blemish from the flock, with your valuation, as a trespass offering. So the priest shall make atonement for him regarding his ignorance in which he erred and did not know it, and it shall be forgiven him. It is a trespass offering; he has certainly trespassed against the LORD.

a. Though he does not know it, yet he is guilty and shall bear his iniquity: If someone desecrated the holy things of the tabernacle, “I didn’t know” was not an acceptable excuse. They had to still make sacrifice to atone for their sin.

b. So the priest shall make atonement for him regarding his ignorance in which he erred and did not know it: Ignorance can be sin. It is no excuse; often it is sin and must be atoned for.






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