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Chinese4/26/2005English
經文:利未記廿五章
鑰節:「第五十年你們要當作聖年,在遍地給一切的居民宣告自由。」(25:10上)
提要

        本章是有關聖年的規定。這些規定擴大了安息日──每七天一日──的原則,使土地每七年休息一年,並在第五十年,或稱禧年時,再設一聖年。土地在享安息時不得耕種,也就是不能撒種、收割、修剪葡萄園,或摘取果實。上帝以祂的大智慧讓土地每七年有一年,以及每四十九和每五十年有接連兩年的休息,好使土地能補充養分,恢復最佳的生產力。

        這項生態和農業法是保存自然資源的最佳措施。所有的土地都屬上帝;地的創造者自然知道如何以最好的方式對待它。這項措施也清楚的讓以色列人明瞭,上帝才是土地的擁有者,從某方面來說,他們只不過是佃農,要遵守地主對使用土地的指示(25:23)。他們若能持守上帝所設立的聖年,上帝就賜給他們一道應許:「你們……就可以在那地上安然居住」(25:18),「地必出土產」,「你們就要吃飽」(25:19),並且,上帝也應許在第六年時祝福他們有大豐收,使他們在第七年,甚至再下一年時還有充足的存糧(25:21)。

        安息年時不僅土地得享安息,以色列人彼此間也要取消一切債務,所有的希伯來奴隸也都恢復自由身(申15:1~5)。安息年的基本要旨是使被綑綁的得自由。每五十年,當贖罪日結束時,以色列人要用公羊角吹出喜樂的大響聲,宣告禧年的來臨。這時他們才剛從罪中得到上帝所賜的自由,所以正是值得喜樂的時刻,要在「遍地宣告自由」(25:10)。禧年提醒以色列人,他們曾在埃及為奴,但上帝奇妙的救贖了他們,使他們得自由。由於他們同意與上帝立約,他們現在對上帝有義務,要事奉祂。在禧年之前出售的土地也要在這年歸還給原繼承人(25:10)。藉著歸還土地,以色列人要學習,屬靈的財富和對上帝的順服比物質的財產更重要。

        安息年和禧年可說是象徵所有信徒來到耶穌基督面前時,脫離了罪的權勢所得到的屬靈安息和自由(約8:35~36;加5:1)。信徒從此要學習憑信心而活,完全的倚靠上帝(加2:20)。一年不必勞苦作工並不是要讓以色列人變得懶惰,而是給他們一個機會更親近主,學習祂的律例並信靠祂。

        守安息年可以教導他們作一個慷慨的人,不漠視不幸的窮苦人,而要與他們一起分享上帝豐盛的祝福。土地在安息年自己長出來的莊稼不可收割,也沒有一個人可以據為己有,任何人都可以取用。這樣,國中的窮人、僕婢、和寄居的外人就能得供養(25:5~7)。卅五至卅六節更是愛鄰舍如同自己的實際應用,因為在以色列這個團體中,不能讓一個人餓著;那些有能力的人也要借錢給窮人而不計算利息(25:35~36)。這個命令以及對待奴隸之法能確保窮人不被剝削,並使他們獲得人性的尊嚴(25:43)。

        我們曾為罪奴,但耶穌作了我們的救贖主,祂為我們所做的大事超過那些付贖金將自己近親買回來的人(25:48~49)。耶穌是用祂的生命救贖我們。耶穌在說明來到世上的目的時,曾提到「上帝悅納人的禧年」。祂使被壓制的人得到真正的自由,並且教導我們「禧年」的真義(路4:18、19、21)。

禱告

        主啊,「現在正是悅納的時候,現在正是救贖的日子」。幫助我們靠耶穌之名的力量,天天「宣告被擄的得釋放,受壓制的得自由。」奉主耶穌基督聖名,阿們!

English

Scriptures:Read Leviticus 25
Key Verse:“And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land to all its inhabitants.”(Leviticus 25:10a )
Overview

        This chapter is related to Leviticus 23 in giving regulations concerning the consecrated times of year. It extends the principle of the Sabbath, as one day in seven. To a Sabbath rest of the land every seventh year, and an additional Sabbath on the fiftieth or Jubilee year. During these years no land was to be cultivated in any manner, meaning there was to be no sowing, reaping, pruning of vines, or gathering of fruit. God, in His great wisdom, saw to it that the land had one year in every seven, and two years in a row every forty-ninth and fiftieth year, that it might be replenished and regain optimum fertility.

        This legislation is an excellent agricultural and ecological practice in the conservation of natural resources. All the land is the Lord’s, and He who is its creator knows what is best for it. This practice makes it clear to the Israelites that God is the owner of the land, and in a sense they are but tenants who were to follow His instructions concerning His land (25:23). If they would observe these years as God legislated, He would grant them the conditional promises: “you will dwell in the land in safety” (25:18), “the land will yield its fruit” and “you will eat your fill” (25:19), and finally, He promised to bless them in the sixth year with great abundance so they would have plenty for the seventh and even more than enough for the year of Jubilee (25:21).

        As well as these years providing a rest for the land, they were also years when all debts among g\fellow Israelites were to be cancelled and all Hebrew slaves to be freed (Deut.15:1-15). The basic theme for these years of rest is liberation for that which was bound. The year of Jubilee was announced by joyous and loud trumpet blasts from the ram’s horn every fiftieth year at eh close of the Day of Atonement. At this point, they had just received divine freedom from their sin, and so it was a time to rejoice. They were to “proclaim liberty throughout all the land” (25:10). It was to remind them that they had once been slaves in Egypt, but God had miraculously set them free and redeemed them. With the agreement of entering into the covenant relationship with Him, they now became bound to God and only free to serve Him. Also, in the year of Jubilee, all land that had been sold during the course of the previous fifty years was to be returned to the original owner of inheritance (25:10). By this they were to learn that spiritual wealth and obedience to God was more important than material possessions.

        These years may be said to symbolize the spiritual rest and liberation from the power of sin which all believers receive when they come to Jesus Christ (John 8:35-36; bGal.5:1). They are enabled and encouraged to learn to live by faith, depending totally upon God (Gal.2:20). A year free from responsibilities of the usual toil was not meant to make them lazy, but to give them opportunity to devote more time to the Lord, learning His Law and trusting in Him.

        Observing these years would teach them to be generous and not forget the needs of the poverty stricken, but to share in the bounty of God’s blessings. Whatever grew of its own accord was not to be gathered in the usual manner. No one in particular was to put any claim on it, but all were free to eat that which went from hand to mouth. In such as way it served as provision for the poor, the servants, and the strangers in the land (25:5-7). We also find here a practical application of loving one’s neighbor as oneself, for within the covenant community, no one was allowed to go hungry and those who were able were to lend to the poor without charging any interest (25:35-36). This, as well as the legislation demanding proper treatment of slaves, would ensure that the poor were not exploited, but rather treated with human dignity (25:43).

        We were once enslaved to sin, but Jesus has become our kinsman redeemer who does a better work than those friends who paid the price to redeem their kin form bondage (25:49-49). He paid with His very life to redeem us. Jesus may have referred to that year in His explanation of the purpose for His coming. He brings true liberty to the oppressed and teaches the true meaning of the “acceptable year of the Lord” (Luke 4:18-19, 21).

Prayer

        Lord, Your truth is that “Now is the accepted time, now is the day of salvation.” Help us by the power of Jesus’ Name today and every day “to proclaim deliverance to the captives and to set at liberty them that are bruised.”


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