Scripture: Leviticus 26-27
Key verses: (27:14-25) If a person consecrates a house to the Lord, the priest shall assess it: whether good or bad, as the priest assesses it, so it shall stand. 15 And if the one who consecrates the house wishes to redeem it, one-fifth shall be added to its assessed value, and it shall revert to the original owner.
16 If a person consecrates to the Lord any inherited landholding, its assessment shall be in accordance with its seed requirements: fifty shekels of silver to a homer of barley seed. 17 If the person consecrates the field as of the year of jubilee, that assessment shall stand; 18 but if the field is consecrated after the jubilee, the priest shall compute the price for it according to the years that remain until the year of jubilee, and the assessment shall be reduced. 19 And if the one who consecrates the field wishes to redeem it, then one-fifth shall be added to its assessed value, and it shall revert to the original owner; 20 but if the field is not redeemed, or if it has been sold to someone else, it shall no longer be redeemable. 21 But when the field is released in the jubilee, it shall be holy to the Lord as a devoted field; it becomes the priest’s holding. 22 If someone consecrates to the Lord a field that has been purchased, which is not a part of the inherited landholding, 23 the priest shall compute for it the proportionate assessment up to the year of jubilee, and the assessment shall be paid as of that day, a sacred donation to the Lord. 24 In the year of jubilee the field shall return to the one from whom it was bought, whose holding the land is. 25 All assessments shall be by the sanctuary shekel: twenty gerahs shall make a shekel.
Reflection: Have you seen the recent Progressive Insurance marketing campaign? The ones where parental life coach Dr. Rick helps new homeowners not become their parents. I love the one where Dr. Rick helps the new homeowners participating in his seminar throw out unneeded home decoration signs. I mean, do you really need a sign that reads, “No fussin’; No cussin’; No backtalkin’” — the answer is no, Dr. Rick says.
In thinking about this section of Leviticus and the progressive life coach commercial, I think about the sign that I have seen in many homes: “May God bless this home and all who enter it.” Leviticus 27:14-25 details the process and procedures in dedicating one’s home, land, cattle, or other resources to the work of the Lord. Dedicating your home to the service and worship of God is an acceptable move for divine blessing. I wonder if they ever hung one of those signs following the dedication ceremony.
Beyond this trivial connection to the passage, I wonder how we might use the resources at our disposal — our homes, our car, our cattle, our property — to the glory of God. As we continue to live into the virtual and hybrid reality of these days, I wonder how we might be open to new ways of worship space, creating the sacred in various ways, and dedicating a space in our home to the worship of God.
Prayer: Lord prepare me, to be a sanctuary, pure and holy, tried and true, and with thanksgiving I’ll be a living sanctuary for you. Amen.
Author: Ben Brannan
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].