Leviticus 26

 

This chapter comprises the third instance, much expanded, of God’s promise (and warning), actually a profound prophecy, to the Israelites and the Jewish people.  This chapter is a foretaste of Deuteronomy 28.  You should know that all the second-person pronouns in this chapter are plural; therefore each of us is being individually addressed.

לֹא־תַעֲשׂוּ לָכֶם אֱלִילִם וּפֶסֶל וּמַצֵּבָה לֹא־תָקִימוּ לָכֶם וְאֶבֶן מַשְׂכִּית לֹא תִתְּנוּ בְּאַרְצְכֶם   26:1

לְהִשְׁתַּחֲוֹת עָלֶיהָ כִּי אֲנִי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם

Levi. 26:1  “You shall make no idols for yourselves, and you shall raise up no graven image or pillar for yourselves, and you shall set no stone imagery in your land to bow down on account of it, for I am the Lord, your God.”

אֶת־שַׁבְּתֹתַי תִּשְׁמֹרוּ וּמִקְדָּשִׁי תִּירָאוּ אֲנִי יְהוָה   26:2

Levi. 26:2  “And you shall keep My Sabbaths, and revere My sanctuary.”

                                                                     “I am the Lord.”

אִם־בְּחֻקֹּתַי תֵּלֵכוּ וְאֶת־מִצְוֹתַי תִּשְׁמְרוּ וַעֲשִׂיתֶם אֹתָם   26:3

Levi. 26:3  “If you will walk in My statutes and keep My commandments and do them,

וְנָתַתִּי גִשְׁמֵיכֶם בְּעִתָּם וְנָתְנָה הָאָרֶץ יְבוּלָהּ וְעֵץ הַשָּׂדֶה יִתֵּן פִּרְיֹו   26:4

Levi. 26:4  then I will give your rains in their season and the land will yield its produce and the tree of the field will yield its fruit.”

וְהִשִּׂיג לָכֶם דַּיִשׁ אֶת־בָּצִיר וּבָצִיר יַשִּׂיג אֶת־זָרַע וַאֲכַלְתֶּם לַחְםְכֶם לָשֹׂבַע וִישַׁבְתֶּם לָבֶטַח   26:5

בְּאַרְצְכֶם

Levi. 26:5  “And your threshing will reach the vintage, and the vintage will reach seed time, and you will eat your bread to satisfaction, and you will dwell safely in your land.”

וְנָתַתִּי שָׁלֹום בָּאָרֶץ וּשְׁכַבְתֶּם וְאֵין מַחֲרִיד וְהִשְׁבַּתִּי חַיָּה רָעָה מִן־הָאָרֶץ וְחֶרֶב לֹא־תַעֲבֹר   26:6

בְּאַרְצְכֶם

Levi. 26:6  “And I will render peace in the land, and you will lie down and there will be none making afraid, and I will put away any hurtful beast from the land, and the sword will not pass through your land.”

וּרְדַפְתֶּם אֶת־אֹיְבֵיכֶם וְנָפְלוּ לִפְנֵיכֶם לֶחָרֶב   26:7

Levi. 26:7  “And you will chase your enemies, and they will fall to the sword before you.”

וְרָדְפוּ םִכֶּם חֲמִשָּׁה מֵאָה וּמֵאָה םִכֶּם רְבָבָה יִרְדֹּפוּ וְנָפְלוּ אֹיְבֵיכֶם לִפְנֵיכֶם לֶחָרֶב   26:8

Levi. 26:8  “And five from you will chase a hundred and a hundred from you will chase ten thousand, and your enemies will fall to the sword before you.”

וּפָנִיתִי אֲלֵיכֶם וְהִפְרֵיתִי אֶתְכֶם וְהִרְבֵּיתִי אֶתְכֶם וַהֲקִימֹתִי אֶת־בְּרִיתִי אִתְּכֶם   26:9

Levi. 26:9  “And I will show respect to you and I will make you fruitful and multiply you and establish My covenant with you.”

וַאֲכַלְתֶּם יָשָׁן נֹושָׁן וְיָשָׁן מִפְּנֵי חָדָשׁ תֹּוצִיאוּ   26:10

Levi. 26:10   “And you will eat old store kept long and you shall draw forth the old store before the new.”

וְנָתַתִּי מִשְׁכָּנִי בְּתֹוכְכֶם וְלֹא־תִגְעַל נַפְשִׁי אֶתְכֶם   26:11

Levi. 26:11   “And I will set My Tabernacle in your midst and My passion will not fail you.”

וְהִתְהַלַּכְתִּי בְּתֹוכְכֶם וְהָיִיתִי לָכֶם לֵאלֹהִים וְאַתֶּם תִּהְיוּ־לִי לְעָם   26:12

Levi. 26:12   “And I will walk in your midst and I will be your God to you and you shall be My people.”

אֲנִי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם אֲשֶׁר הֹוצֵאתִי אֶתְכֶם מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם מִהְיֹת לָהֶם עֲבָדִים וָאֶשְׁבֹּר מֹטֹת עֻלְּכֶם   26:13

 וָאֹולֵךְ אֶתְכֶם קֹומְמִיּוּת

Levi. 26:13   “I am the Lord, your God, Who brought you out of the land of Egypt, from being their slaves, and broke the bars of your yoke and made you go upright.”

The Lord removed the yoke from the children of Israel.  Do you think that He would impose another yoke on us?  No!  To call the commandments a yoke is to diminish God.  The commandments are for our benefit.  We are to fulfill them with joy in our hearts.  The Lord wants nothing from us that comes with an unwilling heart (see Exod. 25:2). 

וְאִם־לֹא תִשְׁמְעוּ לִי וְלֹא תַעֲשׂוּ אֵת כָּל־הַמִּצְוֹת הָאֵלֶּה   26:14

Levi. 26:14   “But if you will not listen to Me and will not do all these commandments,

וְאִם־בְּחֻקֹּתַי תִּמְאָסוּ וְאִם אֶת־מִשְׁפָּטַי תִּגְעַל נַפְשְׁכֶם לְבִלְתִּי עֲשֹׂות אֶת־כָּל־מִצְוֹתַי לְהַפְרְכֶם   26:15

אֶת־בְּרִיתִי

Levi. 26:15   and if you will reject My statutes and if your soul will abhor My ordinances so you will not be doing all My commandments so as to break My covenant,

אַף־אֲנִי אֶעֱשֶׂה־זֹּאת לָכֶם וְהִפְקַדְתִּי עֲלֵיכֶם בֶּהָלָה אֶת־הַשַּׁחֶפֶת וְאֶת־הַקַּדַּחַת מְכַלֹּות עֵינַיִם   26:16

וּמְדִיבֹת נָפֶשׁ וּזְרַעְתֶּם לָרִיק זַרְעֲכֶם וַאֲכָלֻהוּ אֹיְבֵיכֶם

Levi. 26:16   “I will do the same to you; so I will bestow trouble on you, consumption and fever, making the eyes fail and causing the soul sorrow, and you shall sow your seed in vain, as your enemies shall eat it.”

וְנָתַתִּי פָנַי בָּכֶם וְנִגַּפְתֶּם לִפְנֵי אֹיְבֵיכֶם וְרָדוּ בָכֶם שֹׂנְאֵיכֶם וְנַסְתֶּם וְאֵין־רֹדֵף אֶתְכֶם   26:17

Levi. 26:17   “And I will deliver up My presence because of you, so you will be smitten before your enemies, and your foes shall rule over you, and you shall flee when no one is pursuing you.”

וְאִם־עַד־אֵלֶּה לֹא תִשְׁמְעוּ לִי וְיָסַפְתִּי לְיַסְּרָה אֶתְכֶם שֶׁבַע עַל־חַטֹּאתֵיכֶם   26:18

Levi. 26:18   “And if, during these things, you will not listen to Me, then I will continue to discipline you sevenfold for your sins.”

This sounds a bit ominous.  Will we have to experience seven dire lessons before we learn to listen?  I count only four so far, forty years in the wilderness, two losses of the Temple, and the exile of the last two millennia.  See vss. 26:21, 26:24, and 26:28 below.                                                                   [Return to Dani. 9:2]

וְשָׁבַרְתִּי אֶת־גְּאֹון עֻזְּכֶם וְנָתַתִּי אֶת־שְׁמֵיכֶם כַּבַּרְזֶל וְאֶת־אַרְצְכֶם כַּנְּחֻשָׁה   26:19

Levi. 26:19   “And I will quench the arrogance of your strength, and I will make your heaven like iron and your earth like brass.”

וְתַם לָרִיק כֹּחֲכֶם וְלֹא־תִתֵּן אַרְצְכֶם אֶת־יְבוּלָהּ וְעֵץ הָאָרֶץ לֹא יִתֵּן פִּרְיֹו   26:20

Levi. 26:20   “And your strength will be spent in vain, and your land will not yield its produce, and no tree of the land will yield its fruit.”

וְאִם־תֵּלְכוּ עִמִּי קֶרִי וְלֹא תֹאבוּ לִשְׁמֹעַ לִי וְיָסַפְתִּי עֲלֵיכֶם מַכָּה שֶׁבַע כְּחַטֹּאתֵיכֶם   26:21

Levi. 26:21   “And if you will walk contrary against Me and will not be willing to listen to Me, then I will increase a plague on you sevenfold as your sins.”

וְהִשְׁלַחְתִּי בָכֶם אֶת־חַיַּת הַשָּׂדֶה וְשִׁכְּלָה אֶתְכֶם וְהִכְרִיתָה אֶת־בְּהֶמְתְּכֶם וְהִמְעִיטָה אֶתְכֶם וְנָשַׁמּוּ  26:22

דַּרְכֵיכֶם

Levi. 26:22   “So I will send among you the beast of the field that will make you childless and cut down your cattle and make you few in number, and your paths will become desolate.”

וְאִם־בְּאֵלֶּה לֹא תִוָּסְרוּ לִי וַהֲלַכְתֶּם עִמִּי קֶרִי   26:23

Levi. 26:23   “And if, despite these things, you will not be reformed to Me, and walk contrary against Me,

וְהָלַכְתִּי אַף־אֲנִי עִםָּכֶם בְּקֶרִי וְהִכֵּיתִי אֶתְכֶם גַּם־אָנִי שֶׁבַע עַל־חַטֹּאתֵיכֶם   26:24

Levi. 26:24   then I will also walk against you in contrary ways, so I will even smite you sevenfold for your sins.”

וְהֵבֵאתִי עֲלֵיכֶם חֶרֶב נֹקֶמֶת נְקַם־בְּרִית וְנֶאֱסַפְתֶּם אֶל־עָרֵיכֶם וְשִׁלַּחְתִּי דֶבֶר בְּתֹוכְכֶם וְנִתַּתֶּם   26:25

בְּיַד־אֹויֵב

Levi. 26:25   “And I will bring a sword against you, a great vengeance of the covenant, and you will withdraw to your cities, and I will spread a pestilence in your midst, and you will be delivered into the hand of the enemy.”

בְּשִׁבְרִי לָכֶם מַטֵּה־לֶחֶם וְאָפוּ עֶשֶׂר נָשִׁים לַחְםְכֶם בְּתַנּוּר אֶחָד וְהֵשִׁיבוּ לַחְםְכֶם בַּמִּשְׁקָל   26:26

וַאֲכַלְתֶּם וְלֹא תִשְׂבָּעוּ

Levi. 26:26   “With My breaking of the staff of bread for you, then ten women will bake your bread in one oven and will send back your bread by weight, and you will eat but not be satisfied.”

וְאִם־בְּזֹאת לֹא תִשְׁמְעוּ לִי וַהֲלַכְתֶּם עִמִּי בְּקֶרִי   26:27

Levi. 26:27   “And if you will not listen to Me in this, and walk against Me in contrary ways,

וְהָלַכְתִּי עִםָּכֶם בַּחֲמַת־קֶרִי וְיִסַּרְתִּי אֶתְכֶם אַף־אָנִי שֶׁבַע עַל־חַטֹּאתֵיכֶם   26:28

Levi. 26:28   then I will ‘walk’ against you in a ‘rage’ of contrariness, and I will also chastise you sevenfold for your sins.”

וַאֲכַלְתֶּם בְּשַׂר בְּנֵיכֶם וּבְשַׂר בְּנֹתֵיכֶם תֹּאכֵלוּ   26:29

Levi. 26:29   “So you will eat the flesh of your sons, and you will eat the flesh of your daughters.”

וְהִשְׁמַדְתִּי אֶת־בָּמֹתֵיכֶם וְהִכְרַתִּי אֶת־חַמָּנֵיכֶם וְנָתַתִּי אֶת־פִּגְרֵיכֶם עַל־פִּגְרֵי גִּלּוּלֵיכֶם וְגָעֲלָה   26:30

נַפְשִׁי אֶתְכֶם

Levi. 26:30   “And I will destroy your high places and cut down your sun pillars and cast your corpses on the carcasses of your idols, and My ‘breath’ will abhor you.”

וְנָתַתִּי אֶת־עָרֵיכֶם חָרְבָּה וַהֲשִׁמֹּותִי אֶת־מִקְדְּשֵׁיכֶם וְלֹא אָרִיחַ בְּרֵיחַ נִיחֹחֲכֶם   26:31

Levi. 26:31   “And I will make your cities a waste, and I will lay your sanctuaries desolate, so I will not breathe in your sweet scent.”

וַהֲשִׁמֹּתִי אֲנִי אֶת־הָאָרֶץ וְשָׁמְמוּ עָלֶיהָ אֹיְבֵיכֶם הַיֹּשְׁבִים בָּהּ   26:32

Levi. 26:32   “And I will lay the land desolate and your enemies, its inhabitants, will be amazed by it.”

וְאֶתְכֶם אֱזָרֶה בַגֹּויִם וַהֲרִיקֹתִי אַחֲרֵיכֶם חָרֶב וְהָיְתָה אַרְצְכֶם שְׁמָמָה וְעָרֵיכֶם יִהְיוּ חָרְבָּה   26:33

Levi. 26:33   “And I will scatter you throughout the nations and I will send down a sword after you, and your land will be desolate and your cities will be a waste.”

אָז תִּרְצֶה הָאָרֶץ אֶת־שַׁבְּתֹתֶיהָ כֹּל יְמֵי הֳשַּׁמָּה וְאַתֶּם בְּאֶרֶץ אֹיְבֵיכֶם אָז תִּשְׁבַּת הָאָרֶץ וְהִרְצָת   26:34

 אֶת־שַׁבְּתֹתֶיהָ

Levi. 26:34   “Then the land will enjoy its Sabbaths all the days of desolation, and you will be in the land of your enemies; then the land shall rest and enjoy its Sabbaths.”

כָּל־יְמֵי הָשַּׁמָּה תִּשְׁבֹּת אֵת אֲשֶׁר לֹא־שָׁבְתָה בְּשַׁבְּתֹתֵיכֶם בְּשִׁבְתְּכֶם עָלֶיהָ   26:35

Levi. 26:35   “It shall rest all the days of its desolation, what it did not have on your Sabbaths with your dwelling on it.”

וְהַנִּשְׁאָרִים בָּכֶם וְהֵבֵאתִי מֹרֶךְ בִּלְבָבָם בְּאַרְצֹת אֹיְבֵיהֶם וְרָדַף אֹתָם קֹול עָלֶה נִדָּף וְנָסוּ מְנֻסַת־   26:36

חֶרֶב וְנָפְלוּ וְאֵין רֹדֵף

Levi. 26:36   “And those who are left among you?  Then I will cause a faintness to come in their heart in the lands of their enemies, and the sound of a driven leaf shall pursue them, and they will take flight as if fleeing a sword, and they will fall with no one pursuing.”

וְכָשְׁלוּ אִישׁ־בְּאָחִיו כְּמִפְּנֵי־חֶרֶב וְרֹדֵף אָיִן וְלֹא־תִהְיֶה לָכֶם תְּקוּמָה לִפְנֵי אֹיְבֵיכֶם   26:37

Levi. 26:37   “And they will stumble one into the other as before a sword though no one is pursuing, and you will have no power to stand before your enemies.”

וַאֲבַדְתֶּם בַּגֹּויִם וְאָכְלָה אֶתְכֶם אֶרֶץ אֹיְבֵיכֶם   26:38

Levi. 26:38   “And you shall perish among the nations, as the land of your enemies will eat you up.”

וְהַנִּשְׁאָרִים בָּכֶם יִמַּקּוּ בַּעֲוֹנָם בְּאַרְצֹת אֹיְבֵיכֶם וְאַף בַּעֲוֹנֹת אֲבֹתָם אִתָּם יִמָּקּוּ  26:39

Levi. 26:39   “And those who are left among you will pine away in their iniquity in the lands of your enemies, and they will even pine away because of the iniquities of their fathers with them.”

וְהִתְוַדּוּ אֶת־עֲוֹנָם וְאֶת־עֲוֹן אֲבֹתָם בְּמַעֲלָם אֲשֶׁר מָעֲלוּ־בִי וְאַף אֲשֶׁר־הָלְכוּ עִמִּי בְּקֶרִי   26:40

Levi. 26:40   “And they shall bemoan their iniquity and the iniquity of their fathers, on their treachery that they committed toward Me, and also that they walked against Me in contrary ways.”

אַף־אֲנִי אֵלֵךְ עִםָּם בְּקֶרִי וְהֵבֵאתִי אֹתָם בְּאֶרֶץ אֹיְבֵיהֶם אֹו־אָז יִכָּנַע לְבָבָם הֶעָרֵל וְאָז יִרְצוּ אֶת־   26:41

עֲוֹנָם

Levi. 26:41   “I may even walk against them in contrary ways, and bring them into the land of their enemies; or if their uncircumcised heart will then be humbled, and if they will have accepted the guilt of their iniquity,

וְזָכַרְתִּי אֶת־בְּרִיתִי יַעֲקֹוב וְאַף אֶת־בְּרִיתִי יִצְחָק וְאַף אֶת־בְּרִיתִי אַבְרָהָם אֶזְכֹּר וְהָאָרֶץ אֶזְכֹּר   26:42

Levi. 26:42   then I will remember My covenant of Jacob, and I will also remember My covenant of Isaac, and also My covenant of Abraham, and I will remember the land.”

וְהָאָרֶץ תֵּעָזֵב מֵהֶם וְתִרֶץ אֶת־שַׁבְּתֹתֶיהָ בָּהְשַׁמָּה מֵהֶם וְהֵם יִרְצוּ אֶת־עֲוֹנָם יַעַן וּבְיַעַן בְּמִשְׁפָּטַי   26:43

מָאָסוּ וְאֶת־חֻקֹּתַי גָּעֲלָה נַפְשָׁם

Levi. 26:43   “But the land will have lain forsaken because of them as it enjoyed its Sabbaths in desolation because of them, because they could accept the guilt of their iniquity and in seeing they had rejected My ordinances and their soul had abhorred My statutes.”

וְאַף־גַּם־זֹאת בִּהְיֹותָם בְּאֶרֶץ אֹיְבֵיהֶם לֹא־מְאַסְתִּים וְלֹא־גְעַלְתִּים לְכַלֹּתָם לְהָפֵר בְּרִיתִי אִתָּם כִּי   26:44

אֲנִי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵיהֶם

Levi. 26:44   “And yet for all that, in their being in the land of their enemies I did not reject them and I did not abhor them to completely consume them, to break My covenant with them, for I am the Lord, their God.”

Please note that this poignant verse is framed in the perfect (past) tense.  God sees the future He has predicted here and now speaks as if the events of the past verses have already transpired.  In my opinion, this is a subtle message to us future generations, telling us to pay close attention to the words of this chapter and recognize their historical accuracy and significance.  All of these things have happened and are happening still to the children of Israel. 

וְזָכַרְתִּי לָהֶם בְּרִית רִאשֹׁנִים אֲשֶׁר הֹוצֵאתִי־אֹתָם מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם לְעֵינֵי הַגֹּויִם לִהְיֹת לָהֶם    26:45

לֵאלֹהִים אֲנִי יְהוָה

Levi. 26:45   “But I will remember the covenant of their ancestors for them, that I brought them out of the land of Egypt in the sight of the nations to be their God. 

                                                                      “I am the Lord.”

אֵלֶּה הַחֻקִּים וְהַמִּשְׁפָּטִים וְהַתֹּורֹת אֲשֶׁר נָתַן יְהוָה בֵּינֹו וּבֵין בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל בְּהַר סִינַי בְּיַד־מֹשֶׁה   26:46

Levi. 26:46   These are the statutes and the ordinances and the laws that the Lord made between Him and the children of Israel on Mount Sinai by the hand of Moses.

 

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