Deuteronomy 16 - Biblical Leadership
1Observe the month of Abib, and keep the passover unto the LORD thy God: for in the month of Abib the LORD thy God brought thee forth out of Egypt by night.
2Thou shalt therefore sacrifice the passover unto the LORD thy God, of the flock and the herd, in the place which the LORD shall choose to place his name there.
3Thou shalt eat no leavened bread with it; seven days shalt thou eat unleavened bread therewith, even the bread of affliction; for thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt in haste: that thou mayest remember the day when thou camest forth out of the land of Egypt all the days of thy life.
4And there shall be no leavened bread seen with thee in all thy coast seven days; neither shall there any thing of the flesh, which thou sacrificedst the first day at even, remain all night until the morning.
5Thou mayest not sacrifice the passover within any of thy gates, which the LORD thy God giveth thee:
6But at the place which the LORD thy God shall choose to place his name in, there thou shalt sacrifice the passover at even, at the going down of the sun, at the season that thou camest forth out of Egypt.
7And thou shalt roast and eat it in the place which the LORD thy God shall choose: and thou shalt turn in the morning, and go unto thy tents.
8Six days thou shalt eat unleavened bread: and on the seventh day shall be a solemn assembly to the LORD thy God: thou shalt do no work therein.
9Seven weeks shalt thou number unto thee: begin to number the seven weeks from such time as thou beginnest to put the sickle to the corn.
10And thou shalt keep the feast of weeks unto the LORD thy God with a tribute of a freewill offering of thine hand, which thou shalt give unto the LORD thy God, according as the LORD thy God hath blessed thee:
11And thou shalt rejoice before the LORD thy God, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite that is within thy gates, and the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that are among you, in the place which the LORD thy God hath chosen to place his name there.
12And thou shalt remember that thou wast a bondman in Egypt: and thou shalt observe and do these statutes.
13Thou shalt observe the feast of tabernacles seven days, after that thou hast gathered in thy corn and thy wine:
14And thou shalt rejoice in thy feast, thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, and thy manservant, and thy maidservant, and the Levite, the stranger, and the fatherless, and the widow, that are within thy gates.
15Seven days shalt thou keep a solemn feast unto the LORD thy God in the place which the LORD shall choose: because the LORD thy God shall bless thee in all thine increase, and in all the works of thine hands, therefore thou shalt surely rejoice.
16Three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, and in the feast of tabernacles: and they shall not appear before the LORD empty:
17Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the LORD thy God which he hath given thee.
18Judges and officers shalt thou make thee in all thy gates, which the LORD thy God giveth thee, throughout thy tribes: and they shall judge the people with just judgment.
19Thou shalt not wrest judgment; thou shalt not respect persons, neither take a gift: for a gift doth blind the eyes of the wise, and pervert the words of the righteous.
20That which is altogether just shalt thou follow, that thou mayest live, and inherit the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.
21Thou shalt not plant thee a grove of any trees near unto the altar of the LORD thy God, which thou shalt make thee.
22Neither shalt thou set thee up any image; which the LORD thy God hateth.
Today's Scripture Meaning
The yearly feasts. (1-17) Of judges, Groves and images forbidden. (18-22)
Verses 1-17: The laws for the three yearly feasts are here repeated; that of the Passover, that of the Pentecost, that of Tabernacles; and the general law concerning the people's attendance. Never should a believer forget his low estate of guilt and misery, his deliverance, and the price it cost the Redeemer; that gratitude and joy in the Lord may be mingled with sorrow for sin, and patience under the tribulations in his way to the kingdom of heaven. They must rejoice in their receivings from God, and in their returns of service and sacrifice to him; our duty must be our delight, as well as our enjoyment. If those who were under the law must rejoice before God, much more we that are under the grace of the gospel; which makes it our duty to rejoice evermore, to rejoice in the Lord always. When we rejoice in God ourselves, we should do what we can to assist others also to rejoice in him, by comforting the mourners, and supplying those who are in want. All who make God their joy, may rejoice in hope, for He is faithful that has promised.
Verses 18-22: Care is taken for the due administration of justice. All personal regards must be laid aside, so that right is done to all, and wrong to none. Care is taken to prevent following the idolatrous customs of the heathen. Nothing belies God more, or tends more to corrupt the minds of men, than representing and worshipping, by an image, that God, who is an almighty and eternal Spirit, present every where. Alas! even in gospel days, and under a better dispensation, established upon better promises, there is a tendency to set up idols, under one form or another, in the human heart.
Today's Scripture Application
Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter making an application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Many applications can be made from each day's text. Today we continue in the book of Deuteronomy with Chapter 16 and we see Moses finishing up on the 3rd principal of Laws Given for Proper Worship going over the observations of the Celebrations. Moving into the 4th principal of Laws for Ruling the Nation specifically Justice in the Courts. In making application we see the need to elect proper leadership in the Church and the Government. Too many times we fail to make decisions based on Godly Principles instead we make decisions based on personal preferences, politics, personal gain, or even ignorance. It reminds me politicians today who promise the world but when they get your vote they do things their own way. If we elect officials based on their record and their character then we will put leaders of Justice that will guide our nation. In the Church we see the Biblical qualifications for leadership and if we are wise we will elect them according to the standards of the Bible. How about you? Do you elect officials and leaders according to the Biblical characteristics they posses? Let us learn from today's text and follow the Bible for our leaders.
Contact Me with any Questions or Comments at info@USBibleSociety.com
Sincerely, Dr. David Burnette
Director, The United States Bible Society, Inc.