Leviticus 18:5
You shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: I am the LORD.
Jump to: BarnesBensonBICalvinCambridgeClarkeDarbyEllicottExpositor'sExp DctGaebeleinGSBGillGrayHaydockHastingsHomileticsJFBKDKellyKJTLangeMacLarenMHCMHCWParkerPoolePulpitSermonSCOTTBWESTSK
EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(5) Ye shall therefore keep my statutes. Better, and ye shall keep my ordinances. The word here rendered by “statutes” is the same which the Authorised Version translates ordinances in Leviticus 18:3-4.

He shall live in them.—Better, he shall live by or through them; that is, by observing them the law abiding will live a happy and prosperous life, since disobedience will expose the offender to the penalty of death. The spiritual authorities in the time of the second Temple interpreted this clause to mean that he who obeys these laws shall have eternal life. Hence the ancient Chaldee Versions translate it, “Shall have life eternal.” This passage is quoted both in the Prophets (Ezekiel 20:11; Ezekiel 20:13; Ezekiel 20:21; Nehemiah 9:29) and by St. Paul (Romans 10:5; Galatians 3:12), who contrasts this promise made to works with the promise of the Gospel made to faith.

Leviticus 18:5. He shall live in them — Not only happily here, but eternally hereafter. This is added as a powerful argument why they should follow God’s commands rather than men’s examples, because their life and happiness depended upon it. And though in strictness, and according to the covenant of works, they could not challenge life for so doing, except their obedience was universal, perfect, constant, and perpetual, and therefore no man since the fall could be justified by the law; yet by the covenant of grace this life is promised to all that obey God’s commands sincerely. I am the Lord — Hebrew, I am Jehovah; that is, I am faithful to keep my covenant, and to fulfil my promises. See on Exodus 6:3. I am the sovereign dispenser of life and death, and therefore they that keep my laws shall live.18:1-30 Unlawful marriages and fleshly lusts. - Here is a law against all conformity to the corrupt usages of the heathen. Also laws against incest, against brutal lusts, and barbarous idolatries; and the enforcement of these laws from the ruin of the Canaanites. God here gives moral precepts. Close and constant adherence to God's ordinances is the most effectual preservative from gross sin. The grace of God only will secure us; that grace is to be expected only in the use of the means of grace. Nor does He ever leave any to their hearts' lusts, till they have left him and his services.If a man keeps the "statutes" (i. e. the ordinances of Leviticus 18:4) and "judgments" of the divine law, he shall not be "cut off from his people" (compare Leviticus 18:29), he shall gain true life, the life which connects him with Yahweh through his obedience. See the margin reference and Luke 10:28; Romans 10:5; Galatians 3:12. 5. Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them—A special blessing was promised to the Israelites on condition of their obedience to the divine law; and this promise was remarkably verified at particular eras of their history, when pure and undefiled religion prevailed among them, in the public prosperity and domestic happiness enjoyed by them as a people. Obedience to the divine law always, indeed, ensures temporal advantages; and this, doubtless, was the primary meaning of the words, "which if a man do, he shall live in them." But that they had a higher reference to spiritual life is evident from the application made of them by our Lord (Lu 10:28) and the apostle (Ro 10:2). He shall live in them; not only happily here, but also eternally hereafter, as it is expounded Matthew 19:17 Romans 10:5. This is added as a powerful argument why they should follow God’s commands rather than men’s examples, because their life and happiness depends upon the one, not the other. And though in strictness, and according to the law or covenant of works, they could not challenge life for doing, except their obedience was universal, perfect, constant, and perpetual, and therefore no man since the fall could be justified by the law, as the apostle affirms and proves, Ro 4 Ga 3; yet by the covenant of grace this life is promised to all that obey God’s commands sincerely, though not perfectly, 1 Timothy 4:8. Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments,.... The same as before; these they were to keep in their minds and memories, and to observe them and do them:

which if a man do he shall live in them; live a long life in the land of Canaan, in great happiness and prosperity, see Deuteronomy 30:20; for as for eternal life, that was never intended to be had, nor was it possible it could be had and enjoyed by obedience to the law, which fallen man is unable to keep; but is what was graciously promised and provided the covenant of grace, before the world was, to come through Christ, as a free gift to all that believe in him, see Galatians 3:11; though some Jewish writers interpret this of eternal life, as Jarchi, Aben Ezra, and Ben Gersom:

I am the Lord; that has enjoined these statutes and judgments, and promised life to the doers of them, able and faithful to perform what is promised.

Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: {b} I am the LORD.

(b) And therefore you ought to serve me alone, as my people.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
5. I am the Lord] For the significance of this often repeated expression, see pp. xlviii f."For as for the soul of all flesh...its blood makes out its soul:" i.e., "this is the case with the soul of all flesh, that it is its blood which makes out its soul." בּנפשׁו is to be taken as a predicate in its meaning, introduced with beth essentiale. It is only as so understood, that the clause supplies a reason at all in harmony with the context. Because the distinguishing characteristic of the blood as, that it was the soul of the being when living in the flesh; therefore it was not to be eaten in the case of any animal: and even in the case of animals that were not proper for sacrifice, it was to be allowed to run out upon the ground, and then covered with earth, or, so to speak, buried.

(Note: On the truth which lay at the foundation of this idea of the unity of the soul and blood, which others of the ancients shared with the Hebrews, particularly the early Greek philosophers, see Delitzsch's bibl. Psychol. pp. 242ff. "It seems at first sight to be founded upon no other reason, than that a sudden diminution of the quantity of the blood is sure to cause death. But this phenomenon rests upon the still deeper ground, that all the activity of the body, especially that of the nervous and muscular systems, is dependent upon the circulation of the blood; for if the flow of blood is stopped from any part of the body, all its activity ceases immediately; a sensitive part loses all sensation in a very few minutes, and muscular action is entirely suspended... The blood is really the basis of the physical life; and so far the soul, as the vital principle of the body, is pre-eminently in the blood" (p. 245).)

- Lastly (Leviticus 17:15, Leviticus 17:16), the prohibition against eating "that which died" (Leviticus 11:39-40), or "that which was torn" (Exodus 22:30), is renewed and supplemented by the law, that whoever, either of the natives or of foreigners, should eat the flesh of that which had fallen (died a natural death), or had been torn in pieces by wild beasts (sc., thoughtlessly or in ignorance; cf. Leviticus 5:2), and neglected the legal purification afterwards, was to bear his iniquity (Leviticus 5:1). Of course the flesh intended is that of animals which were clean, and therefore allowable as food, when properly slaughtered, and which became unclean simply from the fact, that when they had died a natural death, or had been torn to pieces by wild beasts, the blood remained in the flesh, or did not flow out in a proper manner. According to Exodus 22:30, the נבלה (that which had fallen) was to be thrown to the dogs; but in Deuteronomy 14:21 permission is given either to sell it or give it to a stranger or alien, to prevent the plea that it was a pity that such a thing should be entirely wasted, and so the more effectually to secure the observance of the command, that it was not to be eaten by an Israelite.

Links
Leviticus 18:5 Interlinear
Leviticus 18:5 Parallel Texts


Leviticus 18:5 NIV
Leviticus 18:5 NLT
Leviticus 18:5 ESV
Leviticus 18:5 NASB
Leviticus 18:5 KJV

Leviticus 18:5 Bible Apps
Leviticus 18:5 Parallel
Leviticus 18:5 Biblia Paralela
Leviticus 18:5 Chinese Bible
Leviticus 18:5 French Bible
Leviticus 18:5 German Bible

Bible Hub






Leviticus 18:4
Top of Page
Top of Page