Leviticus 11:45
For I am the LORD that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.
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(45) That bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt.—Having in a marvellous way delivered them from the land of bondage to be their God in a peculiar sense (comp. 2Samuel 7:23), the Holy One of Israel had a special claim upon His redeemed people that they should obey His laws and keep themselves holy as their Redeemer. This signal act of redemption is repeatedly appealed to in the Scriptures, both to show the obligations which the Israelites are under to obey God’s commandments and to expose their ingratitude (Deuteronomy 8:14; Deuteronomy 13:6; Deuteronomy 20:1; Joshua 24:17; Judges 2:12, &c.).

Leviticus 11:45. That bringeth you up out of Egypt — This was a reason why they should cheerfully submit to distinguishing laws, who had been so honoured with distinguishing favours.

11:1-47 What animals were clean and unclean. - These laws seem to have been intended, 1. As a test of the people's obedience, as Adam was forbidden to eat of the tree of knowledge; and to teach them self-denial, and the government of their appetites. 2. To keep the Israelites distinct from other nations. Many also of these forbidden animals were objects of superstition and idolatry to the heathen. 3. The people were taught to make distinctions between the holy and unholy in their companions and intimate connexions. 4. The law forbad, not only the eating of the unclean beasts, but the touching of them. Those who would be kept from any sin, must be careful to avoid all temptations to it, or coming near it. The exceptions are very minute, and all were designed to call forth constant care and exactness in their obedience; and to teach us to obey. Whilst we enjoy our Christian liberty, and are free from such burdensome observances, we must be careful not to abuse our liberty. For the Lord hath redeemed and called his people, that they may be holy, even as he is holy. We must come out, and be separate from the world; we must leave the company of the ungodly, and all needless connexions with those who are dead in sin; we must be zealous of good works devoted followers of God, and companions of his people.
]These verses set forth the spiritual ground on which the distinction between clean and unclean is based. Compare the marginal references and Leviticus 10:10; Leviticus 20:25-26; 1 Peter 1:15-16.

The basis of the obligation to maintain the distinction was the call of the Hebrews to be the special people of Yahweh. It was to he something in their daily life to remind them of the covenant which distinguished them from the nations of the world. By Jesus Christ it was revealed Matthew 15:11 to the elect people that they were no longer to he tied by the letter of the Law in regard to their food, but were to be left to the exercise of a regenerated judgment. They were to learn that the kingdom of God is not eating, or abstaining from, meats and drinks; but righteousness, and truth, and peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:17. Compare Acts 10:15; 1 Timothy 4:4).

31-35. whosoever doth touch them, when … dead, shall be unclean until the even—These regulations must have often caused annoyance by suddenly requiring the exclusion of people from society, as well as the ordinances of religion. Nevertheless they were extremely useful and salutary, especially as enforcing attention to cleanliness. This is a matter of essential importance in the East, where venomous reptiles often creep into houses and are found lurking in boxes, vessels, or holes in the wall; and the carcass of one of them, or a dead mouse, mole, lizard, or other unclean animal, might be inadvertently touched by the hand, or fall on clothes, skin bottles, or any article of common domestic use. By connecting, therefore, the touch of such creatures with ceremonial defilement, which required immediately to be removed, an effectual means was taken to prevent the bad effects of venom and all unclean or noxious matter. No text from Poole on this verse.

For I am the Lord that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt,.... He had brought them out of it, and was now bringing them on in the wilderness towards Canaan's land, in order to settle them there; and this is observed, to show what obligations they lay under to him to observe his commands; for since he had done such great things for them, it became them to be obedient to him in all things: and the more, since his end herein was, as he observes to them,

to be your God; to make it appear that he was their God, and they were his special people, whom he had chosen for himself above all people upon the earth; that he was their King and their God, to protect and defend them, to provide for them, and take care of them, and bestow all good things on them proper for them:

ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy; separate from all others as he was, living holy lives and conversations, agreeably to his will made known to them, in imitation or him who had chosen and called them to be his people; for, since holiness is his nature, it becomes them who are his house and family, his subjects and people.

For I am the LORD that bringeth you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.
45. The reason for these prescriptions is given; it is the same as in H.

Leviticus 11:45Lastly, contact with edible animals, if they had not been slaughtered, but had died a natural death, and had become carrion in consequence, is also said to defile (cf. Leviticus 11:39, Leviticus 11:40 with Leviticus 11:24-28). This was the case, too, with the eating of the swarming land animals, whether they went upon the belly,

(Note: The large ו in גּחון (Leviticus 11:42) shows that this vav is the middle letter of the Pentateuch.)

as snakes and worms, or upon four feet, as rats, mice, weasels, etc., or upon many feet, like the insects (Leviticus 11:41-43). Lastly (Leviticus 11:44, Leviticus 11:45), the whole law is enforced by an appeal to the calling of the Israelites, as a holy nation, to be holy as Jehovah their God, who had brought them out of Egypt to be a God to them, was holy (Exodus 6:7; Exodus 29:45-46).

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