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Explain Leviticus Chapter 24

Some countries and religions still follow the laws of Leviticus 24:20 and 21. Why do some Christians still believe we should follow verse 21 but not 20. Shouldn't we have ceased all or continue all?

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 ---Paulette on 7/27/05
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The "feasts" and "sabbaths" here are those associated with the Ceremonial laws, associated with the sacrificial services. They were useful as long as they pointed to Jesus' coming as the true lamb to be offered for our sins. Once Jesus died on the cross, they became useless, marking the end of the sacrificial system.
In contrast the 10 commandments are permanent and the only way we can no longer be under its condemnation is TO EXPRES OUR LOVE for God by keeping His comandments.
---Pierr7958 on 8/14/08


In general Christians are not taught correctly, believing the Law has been completely trashed.

The truth: the "covenant" requiring animal sacrifices for salvation has been modified to: surrender to Jesus to gain salvation.

The Law still regulates behavior, still is a school master until faith matures.

Yet, Satan still deceives the elect and causes disobedience & misplaced mercy toward the guilty.
---a_servant on 6/13/07


Paulette you may want to read the string below IS ALL SCRIPTURE INSPIRED. I live by grace not the law. Bless you in your journey.
---randy on 6/13/07


Eloy, I'm inclined to agree with you, in personal practice at least. I think the laws in Leviticus had more to do with how the society as a whole should administer justice, not how individuals should punish each other. That quite clearly is God's prerogative alone. But the clarification is worth noticing.
---Billy on 8/2/05


look at the full context. the book of leviticus is the set of special laws set for the levites, the sons of aaron, or basically the clergy, hence the name, not applying to everyone.
---matthew on 7/31/05




Billy, your perception is still carnal. Jesus did not give any person permission to punish anyone, not in the least little bit, More OR Less. ALL vengeance belongs to God, and He alone will repay, not us. In fact, to the contrary he said to Love your enemy, turn the other cheek when they hit you, and do good to them that spitefully use and abuse you: There's absolutely no retribution in that, no, none at all. Don't feed your flesh, for even a little leaven will leaven the whole lump.
---Eloy on 7/31/05


Thanks Billy for that thought. I would only add that for some crimes, God did say that there was to be no variance, Leviticus 24:17, Numbers 35:31, etc. Even accidental murder had a penalty attached, Numbers 35:32. The farther man has strayed from God's system of punishments, the more problems have developed--He made no prisons, etc. Civil laws are carried out by civil authorities, and never for revenge, Romans 13:1-6. Christians turn the other cheek, suffer wrong, etc.
---Wayne87 on 7/30/05


Billy that makes tremendous sense. I have never seen it that way before, nor have I heard anyone say that. All I've ever heard is that Christians should not be against the death penalty because it was ordained by God. That is why I could not understand why those same Christians did not also condone amputations etc. None of this made sense when Jesus said "Turn the other cheek" and told us to love our enemies. It makes sense now. Thank you very much.
---Paulette on 7/30/05


Think of it this way: Christ PERMITTED us to divorce because of adultery, but He didn't REQUIRE us to do so. We can't, for example, kill our spouse for committing adultery- the limit is to divorce them. But, we don't HAVE to do even that, unless we demand it. We can forgive them instead, and which choice do you think pleases God more? The same principle applies to all the punishment laws.
---Billy on 7/30/05


Those laws were made to be a limit on punishment, not a requirement. What if someone knocked out your tooth and then you tortured him to death for it? The point was to limit excessive retribution. The Law means we can't punish MORE than what it says- it doesn't mean we can't punish LESS than that. The reason we don't insist on enforcing the Law up to the very limit is because of forgiveness and mercy, which we are also commanded to do. There's really no inconsistency.
---Billy on 7/30/05




Sorry Eloy, I have just re-read your response and I think I misunderstood you. I can see now that you are against both the revenge AND the killing. First time I read it as revenge killing.
---Paul_James on 7/28/05


I understand the question but I don't know the answer, except to say that Christians who are in favour of the death penalty are being hypocritical if they are against the other punishments (which I think are barbaric). Pierr do you seriously think that amputating a hand is harsher sentencing that capital punishment? That is what you seem to be saying here. Eloy do you also think that revenge killing is less serious than revenge amputation? I'm not convinced you 2 have understood the question yet.
---Paul_James on 7/28/05


Oops! Sorry about that! I think that the reason we don't execute senteces as harshly today as they did then is the fact that we do not live in a theocracy and these laws do not correspond to the system of jutsice we follow todaY. We have a much softer set of punishments. Is it too soft? Yes, somet imes I think so!
---Pierr7958 on 7/27/05


Because these so-called christians are not truly saved, they only have dead religion but they have no live Jesus. Otherwise, they would know that revenge and killing have no place in the life of a follower of Christ.
---Eloy on 7/27/05


Mike and Pierr, I don't think you have understood my question. I'm asking why do some countries - America for example - still have the death penalty yet they don't gouge out eyes, chop off hands, pull out teeth (whatever would be considered the equivalent of what the offender had done). Why is it only life for life? I asked about just 2 verses which cover many things but only the one punishment is used anywhere outside muslim countries.
---Paulette on 7/27/05


While Christians are not under the "Letter"of the Law, we are under the "Spirit" of the Law. In other words, we live by its principles rather than by its precepts. Jesus has fulfilled all that the Law demanded. Paul says that we also fulfill the law by the way we live. The law is not "useless" as some suggest, but quite valuable, for by understanding it, we get a glimps of the Heart of our God.
---Mike on 7/27/05


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