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Numbers Eighteen

What does it say?
Only Aaron and his sons are to be priest before the Lord and only the Levites are to tend to the tent of meeting as the Lord’s servants. Every sacrifice and offering brought to the sanctuary of the Lord he gives to Aaron, his sons and the members of his household. The first born of man and unclean beast are to be redeemed but the clean animals are holy to the Lord. The priest shall have no portion of the land, for the Lord is their portion. The Levites shall have no inheritance either but are to be supported with the tithe. No son of Israel shall come near to the tent of meeting, only the Levites shall perform the service of the tent of meeting. The Levites are to give a tithe of the tithe to Aaron and his sons.

What does it mean?
This chapter is about honor and dependence. Aaron and his sons received the highest of honor, approaching the Lord and the holy articles, but they received no inheritance in the land. The Levies are honored servants of the Lord, but they received no inheritance in the land. The Levites were dependent on the tithe, given to them by the sons of Israel. The tithe was one-tenth of the fruit that the land produced and one-tenth of the growth of the herd. The sons of Aaron were dependent on the offerings that the people brought to the Lord and the tithe because they received one-tenth of what was given to the Levites. Both the sons of Aaron and the Levites were dependent on the sons of Israel’s observance of the Lord’s commandments.

What shall I do?
In the new covenant, there are no priest, despite there being so called priest in some Christian traditions. Jesus has made all believers priest to the Lord and all believers are temples of the Spirit. Despite what others have taught, the tithe is not an obligation for the Christian. However, we are to give out of love for our brethren and the church. We are to put aside and save, as we prosper and give to the church to serve the needs of the church. (1 Cor 16:1-2) We are to give according to what we have to give, not according to what we do not have. (2 Cor 8:12)

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