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November 30, 2018

Please read today’s Scriptures and use the comment section on this page to share your insights from today’s reading. You can also just mention a verse that impacted you or post a question!

Read (and Hear) the Bible in One Year

Text: 1 Corinthians 5-8
Audio: 1 Corinthians 5-8

You can use the audio Bible as a guide to help “set the pace” as you read along.

Leviticus 12 (ESV)

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the people of Israel, saying, If a woman conceives and bears a male child, then she shall be unclean seven days. As at the time of her menstruation, she shall be unclean. And on the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. Then she shall continue for thirty-three days in the blood of her purifying. She shall not touch anything holy, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying are completed. But if she bears a female child, then she shall be unclean two weeks, as in her menstruation. And she shall continue in the blood of her purifying for sixty-six days.

“And when the days of her purifying are completed, whether for a son or for a daughter, she shall bring to the priest at the entrance of the tent of meeting a lamb a year old for a burnt offering, and a pigeon or a turtledove for a sin offering, and he shall offer it before the Lord and make atonement for her. Then she shall be clean from the flow of her blood. This is the law for her who bears a child, either male or female. And if she cannot afford a lamb, then she shall take two turtledoves or two pigeons, one for a burnt offering and the other for a sin offering. And the priest shall make atonement for her, and she shall be clean.”

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Next: Leviticus 13

Back: Leviticus 11

This Post Has One Comment
  1. Watch Your Step!

    Leviticus 12 is one of those chapters people use to justify disregarding the Book of Leviticus (or the entire Old Testament). But it's important to keep in mind the principles we can learn from what we read (even Leviticus) and where possible, understand the practices and customs of the times. If God values it enough to be in His Word, then we should value it enough to read it and try to understand what we're reading.

    Uncleanness

    Uncleanness is not just external to us. We are born in sin. Our impurities are more than what we do (on the outside) – they are who we are (on the inside). Our very nature is sinful and our bodily functions are impure and unclean. Even intercourse, which is essential to the survival of the human race (and is sanctioned by God for us to be fruitful and multiply), makes people unclean. 

    Leviticus 15:18 says, "If a man lies with a woman and has an emission of semen, both of them shall bathe themselves in water and be unclean until the evening." The Psalmist writes that he was "brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me" (Psalm 51:5). 

    If we bring Jesus into focus and remember Mary did not conceive Him through natural means but by the Holy Spirit, we begin to understand the "seed of Adam" that was not passed down to Jesus was passed down to the rest of us. This may give us insight into why a new mother would bring offerings (including a sin offering) to the priest after giving birth so he could make atonement for her (and her newborn child).

    When we think of mensuration and afterbirth, we need to put ourselves back in time and what it must have been like to deal with such things. Our modern amenities may impede our ability to understand why a woman couldn't "touch anything holy or come near the sanctuary, until the says of her purifying are completed" (Leviticus 12:4). 

    As for why a mother would be unclean twice as long as when giving birth to a boy, it's possible this goes back to Eve in relation to the Fall. 

    John MacArthur writes, "A woman’s subordinate role did not result after the Fall as a cultural, chauvinistic corruption of God’s perfect design; rather, God established her role as part of His original creation (1 Timothy 2:13). God made woman after man to be his suitable helper. The Fall actually corroborates God’s divine plan of creation. By nature Eve was not suited to assume the position of ultimate responsibility. By leaving Adam’s protection and usurping his headship, she was vulnerable and fell, thus confirming how important it was for her to stay under the protection and leadership of her husband. Adam then violated his leadership role, followed Eve in her sin, and plunged the human race into sinfulness—all connected with violating God’s planned roles for the sexes. Ultimately, the responsibility for the Fall still rests with Adam, since he chose to disobey God apart from being deceived (Romand 5:12–21; 1 Corinthians 15:21, 22)."

    MacArthur, J., Jr. (Ed.). (1997). The MacArthur Study Bible (electronic ed., p. 1864). Nashville, TN: Word Pub.

    We have to be careful not to arbitrarily dismiss what we read, assume things about what we read, or worse, assume there is no (or little) value for us today from Leviticus 12. Rarely is anything fully understood by a cursory reading of Scripture. There are implications and principles that go way beyond what may seem obvious to us as we read. There is also great value understanding what may be confusing or unclear to us.

    Not only does the Word of God have to be spiritual discerned, if we're not interested enough in what God has reveled to us in the Bible to research, study and pray through what we read, then perhaps that's a good indicator we devalue His Word more than we might realize or want to admit.

    Isn't it just like God to make us have to dig a little to find gold? 

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