We will also bring the firstfruits of our land and of every fruit tree to the house of the LORD year by year.
I. ALL SHOULD PLEDGE THEMSELVES "not to forsake the house of our God." Those who are first in position, influence, capability should be leaders in caring, for God's house. Distinction of rank is lost in the unity of dedication. The service of God will call to itself all the variety of human faculty. Where there is the heart "to observe and do all the commandments of the Lord our God," there will be found an office or a post for each one, from the nobles to the children.
II. THE BOND WHICH BINDS US TO THE HOUSE OF GOD AND HIS SERVICE should be regarded as THE MOST SOLEMN AND IRREVOCABLE.
1. We should be ready to give our name and take upon us the vow of a public profession. The Jew placed himself under the oath and curse. We are in a dispensation of liberty, but our liberty is not license. The bond of love is the strongest of all bonds. We are made free by the Son of God; but our freedom is the surrender of our all to him, that we may take his yoke upon us, and bear his burden.
2. We shall separate ourselves from the world that we may be faithful to God. We cannot serve God and mammon. We must be free from entanglements, that we may be good soldiers of Jesus Christ, enduring hardness.
3. Our consecration to God will include the consecration of our substance. With ungrudging liberality we shall fill the "treasure house of our God," that there may be no lack in his service, that every department of Divine worship may be praise to his name. While the proportion of contributions was a matter of written prescription under the law, for the guidance of the people in their lower stage of enlightenment, let us take care that with our higher privilege, and our larger knowledge, and our more spiritual principles, we do not fall below their standard. Our hearts should not require any formal rule; but it is well to systematise our giving for our own sake, for human nature requires every possible assistance, and habit holds up principle and fortifies feeling. The effect of a universal recognition of duty in giving to God's house would be immeasurable. Any true revival of religion will certainly be known by this test. The larger hearts will secure a larger blessing in the future. - R.
And to bring the first-fruits of our ground.
I. WILLINGHOOD. "And to bring." It was no tax. Love is its own tax-levier, and it ever gathers the richest, the ripest, and the best fruit. When a Church or a community is filled with love you need have no fear for revenue.
II. PRECEDENCE "First-fruits." In all things Christ must have the "pre-eminence." He must be Alpha.
III. UNIVERSAL LORDSHIP. First-fruits of "all trees." He is Lord of all. So it is with the fruit of our souls. Jesus claims tribute from all provinces of our nature. He is not satisfied with actions. He claims the captivity of our thoughts. He wants not only the first-fruits of our emotions, of penitence, but also of our gratitude, our adoration, our trust, and our love. Let us see that His flag is waving over every province of our nature, and that we give to Him the first-fruits of conscience and meditation, of imagination and memory, of ardent love and submissive will.
IV. ANNUAL OFFERING. "Year by year." We should lose the consciousness of advancing time if it were not for our birthdays. We should miss much of occasions for gratitude if it were not for Iced-time and harvest, summer and winter. The living earth reminds us of the living God, who supplies all we need.
(W. M. Statham.)
PeopleAaron, Abijah, Adin, Adonijah, Ahiah, Ahijah, Amariah, Anaiah, Anan, Anathoth, Ater, Azaniah, Azariah, Azgad, Azzur, Baanah, Bani, Baruch, Bebai, Beninu, Bezai, Bigvai, Bilgai, Binnui, Bunni, Daniel, Elam, Ginnethon, Hachaliah, Hallohesh, Hanan, Hananiah, Harim, Hariph, Hashabiah, Hashabnah, Hashub, Hashum, Hasshub, Hattush, Henadad, Hezekiah, Hezir, Hizkijah, Hodiah, Hodijah, Hoshea, Jaddua, Jeremiah, Jeshua, Kadmiel, Kelita, Levi, Levites, Maaseiah, Maaziah, Magpiash, Malchijah, Malluch, Meremoth, Meshezabeel, Meshullam, Micha, Mijamin, Nebai, Nehemiah, Obadiah, Pahathmoab, Parosh, Pashur, Pelaiah, Pelatiah, Pileha, Rehob, Rehum, Seraiah, Shebaniah, Shemaiah, Sherebiah, Shobek, Zaccur, Zadok, Zatthu, Zattu, Zedekiah, Zidkijah
PlacesGate of Ephraim
TopicsAnnually, Bring, Bringing, Crops, Firstfruits, First-fruits, Fruit, Fruits, Ground, Manner, Obligate, Ourselves, Responsibility, Sort, Tree, Trees
Outline1. The names of those who sealed the covenant.
29. The points of the covenant.
Dictionary of Bible ThemesNehemiah 10:35
LibraryThe "Fraternity" of Pharisees
To realise the state of religious society at the time of our Lord, the fact that the Pharisees were a regular "order," and that there were many such "fraternities," in great measure the outcome of the original Pharisees, must always be kept in view. For the New Testament simply transports us among contemporary scenes and actors, taking the then existent state of things, so to speak, for granted. But the fact referred to explains many seemingly strange circumstances, and casts fresh light upon all. …
Alfred Edersheim—Sketches of Jewish Social Life
The Formation of the Old Testament Canon
Influences that Gave Rise to the Priestly Laws and Histories
The Second Commandment
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