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Blessing and Cursing

Text: Leviticus 26

The Lord begins a closing discourse that refers to the Ten Commandments and the sanctuary; that if they keep his commandments in the land, he will give them abundant life. But if they do not keep his commandments in the land, the Lord will punish them in the land. The evils that he promised to take away if they observed his commandments, he will increase sevenfold. So, they may turn to him, but if not he will increase these evils sevenfold. If they remain rebellious, then the Lord will destroy their cities and scatter them among the nations. The land will get its rest but they will have it very difficult while in the lands of their enemies. When they come to repentance in the land of their enemies, the Lord will remember his covenant with Jacob and with Isaac and with Abraham and he will remember the land; the Lord will remember the covenant that he made with them when he took their ancestors out of Egypt. This is the word of the Lord to the sons of Israel.

In this chapter there is the promise of blessing if the sons of Israel observe the commandments of the Lord and the promise of cursing if they disobey the commandments of the Lord. This includes moral, civil and ceremonial commandments. For the sons of Israel there were several commandments but only one law. If they observe the Lord’s commandments, the promises to bless them in the land but if they rebel against his rule he promises curses sevenfold. 

Not for Israel only, but for all the nations, there is a promised blessing and cursing. The promise blessing and cursing for the sons of Israel had to do with the land of Canaan. The promise blessing and cursing for all the nations has to do with eternal life in the new heaven and new earth which is yet to come. God is now declaring that all people everywhere should repent, because he has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through Jesus, whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising him from the dead. (Acts 17:30-31) The promise of blessing and cursing that was promised to Israel has to do with observance or rebelling against the commandments that the Lord gave through his servant Moses. The promise of blessing and cursing for all people everywhere has to do with receiving or rejecting the Son of God, who Jesus Christ the Lord. Those who rejected him will go away into eternal punishment, but those who received him will go into eternal life.

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