Copyright © 1999 by William D. Barrick. Cited with permission.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance:
Leviticus 26 and the Biblical Covenants
William D. Barrick, Th.D.
Professor of OT
The Master's Seminary
Leviticus 26 consists of parenetic revelation given at Sinai on the threshold of
of the apparent tension that the promulgation of the Mosaic Covenant had created with
the Abrahamic Covenant. After three disturbing apostasies at Sinai, Leviticus 26 explains
the relationship between the two covenants and reemphasizes the exclusive lordship of
Yahweh. Although Leviticus 26 antedates Paul's teaching in Galatians 3:17 by fifteen
centuries, the same truth is proclaimed: "the Law, which came four hundred and thirty
years later, does not invalidate a covenant previously ratified by God, so as to nullify the
The respective emphases of both covenants were advanced by the blessings and
curses of Leviticus 26. While the blessings were relevant to the Abrahamic Covenant's
promises regarding land and blessing, the cursings represented a five-stage process of
Mosaic Covenant vengeance.2 The purpose of the cursings was to produce confession of
guilt, humility, and restitution--elements that may be seen as anticipating either the
Deuteronomic (or Palestinian) Covenant or the New Covenant.3 Restitution involved the
sabbatical principle, a significant element of the Mosaic Covenant. The sabbatical
principle is central to Leviticus 26. Yahweh is Lord of both space (the land) and time (the
sabbaths). The Land-Giver and Exodus-Causer will always be loyal to His covenants and
to His covenanted people. In addition to its direct links to the Abrahamic and Mosaic
covenants, Leviticus 26 also has bearing upon the
existence of a covenant that
This paper will discuss the inter-covenantal aspects of Leviticus 26 as it relates to
the following subject areas: (1) covenant, (2) law, (3) Yahweh, (4) promise, (5)
repentance, and, (6) revelation. The parenesis in Leviticus 26 has something to contribute
to each of these areas of OT theology.
1 NASB. All translations in this study are the author's own unless otherwise indicated, as here.
2 The five stages are: (1) debilitation and defeat (Lev 26:16-17), (2) drought (vv. 18-20), (3) devastation by
wild beasts (vv. 21-22), (4) deprivation by siege (vv. 23-26), and (5) deportation (vv. 27-38).
3 There are a number of similarities between the Deuteronomic Covenant and the New Covenant. See
Olson, Deuteronomy and the Death of
Moses: A Theological
Theology (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 1994), 126-58 (esp. 153-56).
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 2
"Covenant" (tyrb) is employed eight times in Leviticus 26 (vv. 9, 15, 25, 42 ter,
44, 45). It always denotes a binding relationship
of Yahweh to His people
meaning. In all its occurrences in this pericope, "covenant" promotes the concept of the
sovereignty of Yahweh, the covenant-giver. In six of the eight uses of the term, the first
person singular suffix ("my") is attached (vv. 9, 15, 42 ter, 44). Yahweh Himself is
always the antecedent. The unilateral nature of the covenants is implied by this form of
reference. Yahweh Himself established the covenants, and He alone. Yahweh's personal
intervention in the history of
personal and absolute. The covenant lays hold of
the people of
unconditional surrender to the will of God. Loyalty to the covenant must be more than
outward acquiescence, it must be an inward reality. The "uncircumcised heart" (v. 41) is
the antithesis of this loyalty:
The covenant Lord demands heart-consecration which reflects the fulfillment of the
consecration sworn in the circumcision oath. Circumcision is an oath-rite. To be
uncircumcised would be to place oneself outside the juridical authority of Yahweh
and a refusal to consign oneself to the ordeal of the Lord's judgment for the final
verdict on one's life-eternal weal or woe.4
The Abrahamic Covenant
Yahweh's covenant with Abraham appears to underlie the references to "covenant"
in verses 9, 42, and 44. The theme of a fruitful population is an echo of the Abrahamic
Covenant in Genesis 17:6, 7, 19, and 21 (cf, also, Exod 6:4 and Deut 8:18). Verse 9 may
be employed as an example of the distinctions made within the passage concerning the
Abrahamic and Mosaic covenants. The Abrahamic Covenant is characterized by the
following elements: (1) The theme of promise, (2) emphasis on divine fulfillment, and (3)
references to land, prosperity, and blessing and/or cursing. On the other hand, the Mosaic
Covenant is characterized by: (1) the theme of law, (2) emphasis on human
responsibility, and (3) references to sabbath, sanctuary, and divine sovereignty. Although
verse 9 is in the midst of Mosaic Covenant material, it displays Abrahamic vocabulary,
phraseology, and theme. Its message is pertinent to that brief span of time immediately
following the revelation of the Mosaic Covenant at
the revelation concerning law is equal in authority to the older revelation concerning
promise. In order to receive the promised blessings contained in the Abrahamic
words, the Mosaic Covenant would be the program by which Israelites would manifest
their faith by faith's works (cf. Jas 2:14-26).
Each of the three references to "my covenant" in verse 42 is associated with one of
4 Meredith G. Kline, By Oath Consigned: A Reinterpretation of the Covenant Signs of Circumcision and
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 3
bvqfy ytyrb-tx ytrkzv -42a
and I shall remember my covenant with Jacob
qHcy ytyrb-tx Jxv -42b
even my covenant with Isaac
rkzx Mhrbx ytyrb-tx Jxv -42c
yea, I shall remember my covenant with Abraham
rkzx Crxhv -42d
and I shall remember the land
The triple employment of rkz sets the tone of this section.5 The first person references
indicate that Yahweh Himself will respond to
reconfirmed or renewed. Thus, the blessings and cursings of Leviticus 26 are set against
the backdrop of the Abrahamic Covenant. The same covenant may also be in view at
verse 44 in Yahweh's promise not to be the one to initiate any breach of the covenant.
The blessings recited in Leviticus 26:4-12 are at least in part a fulfillment of the
covenant made with Abraham. Those blessings fall into six categories:
(1) productivity (vv. 4-5; cf. Gen 24:35, 27:28; 30:43)
(2) peace (v. 6; cf. Gen 22:17)
(3) power (vv. 7-8; cf. Gen 22:17)
(4) population (v. 9; cf. Gen 12:2; 15:5; 17:6)
(5) provision (v. 10; cf productivity, above), and
(6) presence (vv. 11-12; cf Gen 17:7, 8).
these blessings were associated with the land that
They are consistent with various statements and restatements of the Abrahamic
5 In addition to the repetitions in verse 42, the following elements should be noted: (1) The elevated style
of 42abc is nearly a tristich containing synonymous parallelism. This does not mean that the three men are
synonymous. The proper names are but modifiers of tyrb. The last phrase of 42 and the subsequent
context confirm that only one covenant is being described. (2) rkz forms an inclusion opening and closing
the section in order to maintain the emphasis on remembrance. The absence of rkz in 42b helps the
inclusio develop. (3) Jxv in 42bc continues the concept initiated in 42a. Its absence in 42d confirms the
individual nature of that stich. (4) The patriarchal names are the reverse of the triad's usual order (a hapax
phainomenon in the OT). The backward look to the
original Abrahamic promise served to confront
with their covenant relationship to Yahweh. (5) The apodosis (the protasis is in vv. 40-41) is concluded by
42d. The substitution of Crxh for tyrb focuses attention on the central promise of the covenant: the land.
The patriarchs are not the center of attention, the land grant is. (6) Verse 42d repeats the yqtl form of rkz
(cf. 42c) in order to maintain the continuity between 42abc and 42d. Therefore, 42d is best understood as a
concise summary of 42abc. (Note, also, that rkzx Crxh in 42d is immediately followed by bzft Crxh
in 43a. This case of contrastive anadiplosis is significant in that the Israelites' forsaking of the land must
precede the divine remembering of the land.)
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 4
The covenant curses of Leviticus 26:14-38 are at least in part a removal of the
Disobedience on the part of
(1) Rather than possessing the land (Gen
12:1; 15:7, 18-21; 17:8),
dispossessed from the land (Lev 26:33-38).
(2) National greatness (Gen 12:2) would be turned into humiliation, inferiority, and
insignificance (Lev 26:29, 32, 36-37; Deut 28:43-44).
(3) Blessing (Gen 12:2; 22:17) would turn to cursing (Lev 26:14-38; Deut 28:15-
(4) Instead of being a blessing (Gen
(Lev 26:32, 36-37a; Deut 28:25, 37).
(5) Multiplication (Gen 12:2; 15:5; 17:4-6; 22:17) would be replaced by diminution
(Lev 26:22, 29, 38; Deut 28:18, 20-22, 53-57, 62).
(6) Success over
their enemies (Lev 26:16-17, 32, 36-38; Deut 28:25, 31, 48, 52, 68).
basis for Yahweh's historical extraction of
(cf. Gen 15:13, 14). While the nation resided at
remember that covenant as part of their theological heritage. They experienced the
beginning of the historical fulfillment of its promises.
The Abrahamic Covenant
their own making. That covenant provided them with the hope of landedness at a time
when they were landless. Leviticus 26:1-13 revealed
central concept of the Abrahamic Covenant was the land of promise (v. 42). The Mosaic
Covenant would not conflict with the landedness promised long before.
Even the phraseology of covenant disloyalty ("uncircumcised heart," v. 41) was a
reflection of the impact of the Abrahamic
Covenant on the theology and life of
Circumcision was the outward manifestation of inward commitment to the Abrahamic
Covenant (Gen 17:9-14). Personal commitment and accountability were implicit even in
the unilateral pact that Yahweh made with Abraham while the latter was in a deep sleep
(15:12-21). Divine sovereignty and human responsibility are not opposing concepts in the
biblical covenants. Indeed, it was because Yahweh was the sovereign Lord that the
human vassal must obey Him. Human accountability would be nonexistent (at least,
nonbinding) if it were not for the divine character. Yahweh's Lordship as revealed in His
covenant with Abraham is not altered by subsequent covenants. Since the sovereignty of
God is not altered, neither are the promises of His covenant altered or nullified (cf. Gal
In Leviticus 26 attention is directed to the Mosaic Covenant by the prominence of
the immediate historical context at Sinai and the legal nature of some of the terms used in
the chapter ("statutes, commandments," v. 3; "commandments, statutes, ordinances," vv.
14-15; "statutes, ordinances, laws," v. 46). The precepts of verses 1-2 have the Mosaic
Covenant in view:
• prohibition of idols
• observance of sabbaths, and
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 5
• reverence for the sanctuary
Any remaining doubt is removed by the clear statements of verses 15, 45, and 46. This
legal emphasis sets the stage for covenant vengeance in verse 25. It also promotes the
sense of Yahweh's Lordship which was already present in the Abrahamic Covenant. The
covenant at Sinai was based upon the historical
deliverance was in accord with the prior covenant (vv. 13, 45). It was intended to identify
more narrowly the people of Yahweh. The Abrahamic Covenant's identification of the
land of promise was supplemented by the refined definition of the people of promise. Just
as the outward seal/sign of the Abrahamic Covenant was circumcision, so the seal/sign of
the Sinaitic Covenant was the observance of the sabbaths (cf. Lev 25; 26:2, 34-35, 43).
The seal/sign of each covenant affected the realm of the other covenant: the covenant of
the land (Abrahamic) was related directly to the people by circumcision, and the
covenant of the people (Mosaic) was related directly to the land by the sabbaths.6 Thus
the two aspects of these covenants (the land and the people) were bound together. The
land was for the people, and the people for the land.
The legislation connected with the Mosaic Covenant encouraged a serious mindset
regarding submission to the divine overlord. It also produced humility with reference to
the unworthiness of
7:6-11). Right behavior by the people of Yahweh was the means of witnessing to the
nations. By such behavior
initiated by means of their miraculous deliverance
to the absolute sovereign of
removal of covenant blessings associated with the Mosaic Covenant. The following
aspects of the Mosaic Covenant would be rendered inoperable by the exile:
(1) Though previously a people above all the nations (Exod 19:5; Deut 26:18-19),
(Lev 26:30; Deut 28:43-44).
(2) The kingdom of priests (Exod 19:6) would become ceremonially unclean and
their sacrifices unacceptable (Lev 26:31).
(3) The holy nation of
and characterized by a heathenlike uncircumcised heart (v. 41).
national exile (Lev 26:33, 38).
was but the commencement of the relationship between God and
the nation must identify with each other if the wilderness years were to lead to the
promised land. The apostasies of Sinai7 only served to remind the nation why Yahweh
6 A distinction between a covenant of the land and a covenant of the people should not be pressed to an
extreme. The Abrahamic Covenant also identified the people of promise, referring to them as the
descendants of Abraham. It became clear, however, that some of the descendants of Abraham (through
Ishmael) would not be the people of promise. The Mosaic Covenant clarified the situation regarding the
identification of the covenant people.
7 The golden calf incident provoked the public shattering of the covenant tablets (Exod 32:19). About 3000
died that day (v. 28). Two priests, sons of Aaron, also died at Sinai when they did not follow divine
instructions concerning service at the altar (Lev 10:1-2). Later, a man was executed because of his
blasphemous appropriation of the name of God (Lev 24:10-23).
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 6
gave them legislation. They needed standards. Without the order those standards would
produce, there would be chaos and anarchy. The nation must be prepared for their
inheritance, the land. The means of preparation would be instruction, parenesis.
Instruction is the primary concept of hrvt (v. 46). Leviticus 26's focus is on
identification with the covenant deity/suzerain, Yahweh (cf. v. 45).
The many parallels between Leviticus 26 and Deuteronomy 27-30 present the
reader with a problem of relationship. How is the Deuteronomic Covenant related to
Leviticus 26? The similarities of structure (blessing and cursing), the revelation of the
ultimate chastisement for breach of covenant (exile preceded by siege which deteriorates
into cannibalism), and a time sphere subsequent to the impartation of the Mosaic
Covenant demonstrate a relationship in content. However, similarity is not identity. No
third covenant is ratified in Leviticus 26. No third covenant is described in terms of a
relationship to the past covenant (Abrahamic) and the present covenant (Mosaic). The
connotation of a future covenant may be present; however, that connotation would not
have been identified with Deuteronomy 27-30 by those who received Leviticus 26. The
former passage was revealed to the new generation of Israelites while they were camped
on the plateau of Moab. The latter was revealed to their parents and grandparents while
they were still at
preview of the Deuteronomic Covenant only in the sense that the basic theological
concepts of the
not specify that covenant per se. Leviticus 26 does not provide a formal prophetic
announcement regarding any future covenant.
Revelation is progressive in nature. The seeds of one age become the flowers of yet
another age. The seed of the Deuteronomic Covenant is present in Leviticus 26. The
blessings and cursings
of that chapter were transitional. They prepared
while they were at Sinai prior to commencing their wilderness wanderings. Transitional
revelation would be expanded and formalized in a covenant upon arrival at the threshold
of the land (on the plateau of Moab). The title deed to the land (the Abrahamic
Covenant), the constitution for the people of the land (the Mosaic Covenant), and the
rights to the riches of the land (the Deuteronomic Covenant) would then provide the
nation with all the revelation necessary to live within the land itself.
8 For the sake of discussion the Deuteronomic Covenant will be defined as the pact God established with
confirmed by sacrifices and public deposit at Shechem (Josh 8:30-35), and renewed by common consent at
Shechem near the end of Joshua's ministry (24:1-28). Synonyms for this covenant include Deuteronomic
Covenant on the plains of
Faith (Neptune, NJ: Loizeaux Brothers, 1953), 58-59; Otto Eissfeldt, The Old Testament: An Introduction,
trans. Peter R. Ackroyd (New York: Harper & Row, Publishers, 1965), 214-17, 226, 230; S. R. Driver, An
Introduction to the Literature of the Old Testament (New York: The Meridian Library, 1956), 71; TDOT,
s.v. "tyriB;," by M. Weinfeld, 2:256,
268-69; Moshe Weinfeld, Deuteronomy and the
(Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1972), 59-116; Delbert R. Hillers, Covenant: The History of a Biblical Idea
(Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1969), 58-64,134-42.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 7
Every gift to the nation of
covenant suzerain, Yahweh. The land grant to
with Yahweh. The Land-Giver was summoning the people to service. The summons was
both beneficial and binding. Benefits were conditioned upon obedience to the command
of Yahweh. The enslaved nation was delivered from
belonging to Yahweh (v. 13). The prior bondage differed from the latter in that the latter
brought blessing (vv. 2-12). No such rewards accrued as a result of Egyptian bondage.
The land grant predated the existence of
grant at the time of his own exodus from
established under Moses at the time their exodus
controlled the history of the land and the people. “From the roughly 160 cases in which
biblical passages speak of Jahweh's
giving the land to
references to ‘the fathers.’”9 It is significant, therefore that reference is made to "the
ancestors" (v. 45) in a context related to the Mosaic Covenant. This establishes a
continuity of covenants. Just as Abraham's descendants claimed the Abrahamic Covenant
while they were at
claim the covenant made with their ancestors at Sinai. Willingness to identify themselves
as Yahweh's people will qualify them for restoration to the land.
The land of promise is depicted as the setting for the fulfillment of both blessings
(vv. 4-12) and curses (vv. 14-38). Reward and retribution could not be fulfilled
elsewhere. The landedness
landed prosperity without the land. On the other hand,
land until they had first possessed it.
Interestingly, the land itself was treated as a separate participant in the covenant. It
could be the recipient of the restitution of sabbaths that it had been denied (vv. 34-35,
43). It was a land belonging first to Yahweh. As its sovereign Lord, He had authority to
grant it to
generation who were disloyal to the covenant would be subject to expulsion from the
land (vv. 33-44). Yet, the land would remain, kept in store for the future generation who
would obey the precepts of Yahweh. The generations may come and go, but the land
would abide as the Abrahamic Covenant's material entity. By means of sabbaths Yahweh
intended to preserve the fruitfulness of the land for the ultimate possessors (cf. Lev 25).
Therefore, disobedience to Yahweh's sabbatical legislation was considered a sin against
the land. Even more, it was a sin against future generations since such a breach of the
covenant resulted from greed. Such greed would rob the land of its fruitfulness and rob
future generations of its provision.
Landedness made it possible for the people to be tempted in the areas of self-
sufficiency, idolatry, and sabbath breaking. Such temptations could be resisted by
remembering the history of the people and the land. Remembering the covenant deeds of
Yahweh would remind the people that the land they enjoyed was an unearned gift. The
exiled people, remembering the Lord of the land, would confess their guilt and make
restitution (vv. 40-41). Their remembering and acting upon that memory would, in turn,
9 J. N. M. Wijngaards, The Dramatization of Salvific History in the Deuteronomic Schools, OTS 16
(Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1969), 73.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 8
result in Yahweh remembering the land (v. 42). He would then preserve the covenant
blessings for His people.
hope. In the land, when the hope was fulfilled, the land presented the people with a
challenge. They were challenged to exercise faith in the God of the covenant. Such faith
had not been exhibited by those who apostasized at Sinai and who died in the wilderness.
Heilsgeschichte ("salvation history") was the foundation of the Mosaic Covenant
(vv. 13, 45). Yahweh is the God of history. He is the sovereign Lord of time and of place.
election and deliverance are the main factors in
graciously and mercifully associated Himself with this nation. As the Lord of history, He
controls all history. He can move entire nations
in order to chastise disobedient
return her to the land in the time of her repentance. The God of history can prepare the
nations for receiving the exiled people (cf. Joseph, Gen 50:20). The nations would
swallow up the scattered Israelites (Lev 26:33) and would make them vanish (v. 38). Yet,
would preserve a remnant so that a new history could begin.
God of history who controls all time, places, and nations.
Breach and Preservation of Covenant
"uncircumcised heart" (v. 41) of disobedient
divine covenants. Yahweh could never be disloyal. He is always faithful because He is
"Yahweh their God" (v. 44).
Breach of covenant occurred when
Covenant (v. 15). Idolatry and sabbath breaking, especially, constituted breach of
covenant (vv. 1-2). Such an action was willful. It would result in the nullification of
blessings associated with the Abrahamic Covenant and identification associated with the
Mosaic Covenant. Any infraction of Mosaic legislation was deemed rebellion against the
sovereign will of the suzerain-legislator, Yahweh.
Yahweh, however, "remembers" (rkz) His covenants. He preserves the covenants.
The covenants contained both blessing and cursing. Blessing and cursing were initiated
by promise, and implemented by legislation. Promise emphasized divine sovereignty;
legislation highlighted human responsibility. When
remained faithful. The suzerain's faithful preservation of the covenant is in sharp contrast
to the vassal's failure to submit. Covenant history confirms both divine dependability and
The Abrahamic Covenant was identified as a covenant with roots in the history of
Verse 42 presented this confirmation of prior history.10 As the Abrahamic Covenant was
preserved (and would continue to be preserved), so also the Mosaic Covenant would be
preserved for future generations (v. 45). Yahweh's deeds in history illustrate His
10 See above, 4.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 9
faithfulness to preserve the covenant in spite of the failure of one generation to be faithful
Religious enthusiasm is insufficient for proper participation in the covenant
relationship with God. Enthusiasm without identification leads to confusion.
produces unity within and recognition from without. At
apostasies of the golden calf, the strange fire, and blasphemy demonstrated what an
unguided and unstructured religious fervor can produce. Seeing that the emphasis of
divine law is upon Yahweh Himself, any breach of the law is defiance directed against
the Law-Giver. The stipulations of law exhibit the nature and personality of the law-
giver. The morality of the law is a reflection of
grounded in the precepts of divine law. Divine law identified Yahweh as the Creator of
the heavens and earth, the Promise-Giver, the Land-Giver, and the Exodus-Causer. Every
statute was a testimony to the election of the people and a witness to their identification
with their sovereign Lord.
A variety of terms are employed for law in Leviticus 26: hqH/qH ("statute"), hvcm
("commandment"), Fpwm ("ordinance"), and hrvt ("law/instruction"). These terms
represent the entire law promulgated at
(rmw) "obeyed" (fmw), "walked in (ordering the life)" (jlh), and "practiced" (hWf) (cf.
3, 14-15). Therefore, the law did not serve as mere ornamentation. It was
constitution. The nation of
The legislation promulgated at Sinai did not contradict the promise given to
Abraham. The legal covenant (Mosaic) supplemented the promissory covenant
(Abrahamic). The latter did not nullify the former. Mosaic legislation was a means of
implementing Yahweh's suzerainty. It reaffirmed His lordship over His people prior to
their entry into the land promised to Abraham's descendants.
Relation to Covenant
As already observed,11 law supplemented covenant. Stipulations were a part of the
treaty form employed by several cultures in the ancient Near East. Thereby the suzerain
could identify himself as the overlord, the one with authority to establish the calendar,
ordain boundaries, grant life, or deal out death. Without legislation, authority would not
be clarified. Every covenant must have an authority in which it resides, an authority
capable of meting out the punishment required for breach of covenant. A covenant is as
lasting as its ratifier. A covenant is as wise and moral as its ratifier. The ratifier of the
covenants with Abraham and Moses was Yahweh Himself. The covenants are His
covenants (cf. "my covenant," vv. 9, 15, 42, 44), and the laws are His laws (cf. first
person singular suffixes on terms for law in vv. 3 and 15).
11 See above, 7-9, 14-15.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 10
Prohibition of Idolatry
Leviticus 26:1 clearly prohibited all forms of idolatry. The prohibition emphatically
identified the true nature of faith in Yahweh. Such faith recognizes the exclusivity of
Yahweh's deity and lordship. No idolater can truly worship Yahweh. Yahweh's
preeminence as the Creator of heavens and earth makes Him the only true God. Yahweh
created and controls all the natural forces of the world. He is the Rain-Giver and the
Rain-Withholder (vv. 4, 19). He is the Controller of wild beasts (vv. 6, 22). He is the
Controller of the nations (vv. 7-8, 16-17, 33, 38). He knows the heart and its motives (vv.
36, 41). He is the Destroyer of idols and idol worship (v. 30). Idolatry and its attendant
rituals in the ancient
self-sufficient. In fact, idolaters were cast in the role of manipulators. They sought to
manipulate the divinities behind the idols. Not so with Yahweh--Yahweh is controlled
by no man. Yahweh controls history, nature, life, death, and man.
According to Leviticus 26, idolatry is powerless/empty; idolatry is man's product
(v. 1). Idolatry is blatant, filthy, and deadly (v. 3012). It is doomed to destruction and the
idolater is destined to die. Idolatry is willful rebellion against the person of Yahweh. It is
usurpation of Yahweh's rightful sovereignty. The one engaging in such activities against
Yahweh is a covenant breaker, a rebel, an anarchist, and a conspirator. According to the
treaties of the ancient Near East it was a capital offense to aid in the usurpation of a
throne or to engage in intrigue aimed at supplanting the true heir to the throne.
It is a far more serious crime to defy the Creator of the universe and the God of all
history. The ultimate reason for the prohibition of idolatry is succinctly expressed in the
Selbstvorstellungsformel ("self-introduction formula"):13 "for I am Yahweh your God."
This formula is the key phrase in Leviticus 18-26.14 The contrast is self-explanatory.
Yahweh's inherent and exclusive authority makes idols worthless, powerless,
anthropocentric, and void of any spiritually redeeming value. There is no room for
divided loyalties. Yahweh insists upon exclusive lordship in the lives of His people.
Awareness of Yahweh's existence, identity, and presence was central to the covenant
The idolater chooses the way of the uncircumcised nations (cf. v. 41), therefore he
will be eaten up by those nations (v. 38) among whom he will be exiled (v. 33). His guilt,
his treason, will cause him great anguish (v. 39). The only way to be restored to
Yahweh's favor will be by confession, humility, and restitution (vv. 40-41). Idolaters
must confess their filthy idolatry. Humility must be produced by the realization that they
12 The following translation of Lev 26:30 brings out the "deadly" aspect of idolatry: "I will destroy your
shrines and cut down your incense altars, then I will put your corpses upon the lifeless forms of your filthy
idols because I despise [lit., my soul despises] you." The term for idols (MYLiuUL.gI) may be "a term of
reproach, ‘things of dung,’ which is vocalized similarly to MYciUqwiI ['detested things']" (Menahem Haran,
Historical Setting of the Priestly School [
A Commentary, trans. Douglas W. Stott, OTL (
Knox Press, 1996), 403: "dungy things."
13 John van Seters, "Confessional Reformulation in the Exilic Period," Vetus Testamentum 22 (1972): 455.
14 Gordon J. Wenham, The Book of Leviticus, NICOT (
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 11
cannot manipulate Yahweh. Restitution must consist in allowing Yahweh and His land
priority in their lives.
Observance of Sabbaths
"Sabbaths" is plural throughout the pericope (vv. 2, 34-35, 43). The reference is
undoubtedly intended to include both weekly sabbaths and annual sabbaths (including the
year of jubilee) that are mentioned in the preceding context (chapters 23-25).
Sabbath observance is theologically rich. It specially signified God's dominion over
claimed His demand upon their time.16 The sabbaths were also a means of reminding
way in which the faith of the OT hears the commandment of its God in its liturgical
time as well as the God of space. The sabbath honored the Lord of time. The sabbaths
taught the Israelites to trust the Lord of all things for their provisions. Lordship was the
core of the sabbatical principle. By trusting the Lord to provide for the seventh day, the
seventh year, and the forty-ninth and fiftieth
power and wisdom. He who provided in the wilderness had already proclaimed the
sabbatical principle while
was simple: "Trust me to provide. I am Yahweh. I will not lead you where I cannot care
for you." God never demands what man is unable to do. He provides the way of service.
He blesses the path of obedience. Sabbath in the OT was more than an expression of the
vertical relationship to the Lord of all creation. It was also an expression of concern and
care for those who were fellow participants in the covenant (cf. Leviticus 25).
The sabbatical principle was the test, the seal/sign, of the obedience demanded
under the Mosaic Covenant (Exod 33:17-21). The legal covenant represented the
legislative authority of Yahweh. The sabbath represented Yahweh's authority over time.
It was the legislation of time.
Even the land needed restitution when the time that Yahweh demanded for it was
not granted by
people. The land was a promised possession in a time-space continuum. Breach of the
sabbatical principle regarding the land was evidence of rebellion against the Lord of time
and space. The violation of the land by denying its just recompense was a violation of
Yahweh's gift of fruitfulness. It was robbery because it denied continued fruitfulness for
future generations of Abraham's descendants. The liberty proclaimed in the sabbatical
principle was an echo of the Heilsgeschichte. The God of
freedom was to deny the Lord who brought them
15 Matitiahu Tsevat, "The Basic Meaning of the Biblical Sabbath," Zeitschrift fur die alttestamentliche
Wissenschaft 84 (1972): 455.
17 Walter Brueggemann,
The Land: Place as Gift, Promise, and Challenge
in Biblical Faith (
Fortress Press, 1977), 64.
18 Walther Zimmerli,
Old Testament Theology in Outline,
trans. David E. Green (
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 12
In Leviticus 26 Yahweh is clearly depicted as God of the covenants. "Yahweh"
(hvhy) is employed six times in the pericope (vv. 1, 2, 13, 44, 45, 46). Twice it us used
absolutely (vv. 2, 46). Four times it is connected directly with or associated by context
with "your/their God" (vv. 1, 13, 44, 45). In four of these occurrences, Yahweh is
mentioned in relation to the Mosaic Covenant (vv. 1, 2, 45, 46). In two cases, Yahweh is
associated with the Abrahamic Covenant (vv. 13 and 44).
Selbstvorstellungsformel ("self-introduction formula") is one of the devices by
which this particular pericope is set off from the surrounding context. It is often mixed
with the heilsgeschichtliche Formulierung ("salvation-history formula"). In all cases (vv.
1, 2, 13, 44, 45), it is employed as a conclusion to a section of the pericope. The precepts
of verses 1-2, the blessing of verses 3-12, and, also, the penalties of verses 14-45 are all
marked by the Selbstvorstellungsformel. The only mention of Yahweh outside either one
of these two formulas is in the postscript (v. 46) where Yahweh is the giver of the laws
committed to Moses. The dual emphasis on Yahweh's identification in the section
concerning precept (vv. 1-2) is an obvious contrast to the idolatry forbidden there.
Yahweh is the covenant name of the Covenant-Giver (cf. Exod 3:13-18; also, Gen 12:1,
4; 15:1-8); Exod 20:2, 7). "I am Yahweh" is the divine seal on the covenants involved in
Leviticus 26. Covenant preservation is dependent upon Yahweh's identity (vv. 44-45).
Yahweh is the author of the precepts (v. 46; cf. vv. 1-2), the author of the history
(vv. 13, 45), and the author of the covenant (v. 44). His authority is absolute. His
covenants are dependable. He is the author of both the blessing and the curses, the reward
and the retribution.
Relation to Covenant
Yahweh's relationship to the covenants in Leviticus 26 is established by the
following: (1) the Selbstvorstellungsformel, (2) the heilsgeschichtliche Formulierung, (3)
the attribution of the source of the laws at Sinai (v. 46), and (4) the first person singular
suffixes on "covenant."
Presence and Sanctuary
The presence of Yahweh is referred to by means of "presence" (Mynp, v. 17), "walk
among you" (jvtb jlhth, v. 12), "sanctuary" (wdqm, v. 2), and "tabernacle" (Nkwm,
v. 11). His presence works both weal (vv. 11-12) and woe (v. 17). His presence is both
edifice-oriented19 (vv. 2, 11) and people-oriented (vv. 12, 17). His presence is holy (note
the employment of the root wdq) "holy" in wdqm, "sanctuary"). The reference to
holiness is particularly striking because it is in a context of precepts prohibiting of
idolatry and commanding observance of sabbaths. Yahweh is holy because He is set apart
19 By "edifice-oriented" the writer does not mean that Yahweh is edifice-limited. The edifice was merely an
accommodation to focus attention upon Yahweh's presence among His people. Cf Ezek 10:3-19; 11:22-
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 13
and His presence is distinct from idols. Also, He is holy because sabbatical time is set
apart for Him.
The implication of verses 14-45 is that
punishment-dealing presence of Yahweh, He has ceased to "walk among" them or to
tabernacle among them. Indeed, He is pictured as "walking in opposition" to them (vv.
Even though His presence or sanctuary is not with the exiles among the nations (at
least not in the same fashion as when they were obedient and in the land), yet Yahweh
will preserve His covenant with them (v. 44).
Promise here is being used in a very broad sense of the term. It is being employed
to cover both the promise to bless and the promise to curse. It is in the sense of
fulfillment or commitment as much as in the sense of hope or expectancy.
Promise in Leviticus 26 is identified with the solemn divine self-introduction
(Selbstvorstellung) of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (vv. 1, 2, 13, 44, 45; cf. v.
It is a promise preceding the history of deliverance from
Covenant) and the entrance into
not a reference to something inward and spiritual, but a reference to the tangible aspects
of covenant life: productivity, peace, population, presence, and land. The promise
includes a pledge to bless
their disloyalty. Yahweh, the God of their ancestors, promises His own loyalty to His
covenant with His people.
Blessing and Curse
The blessings and curses of Leviticus 26 are quite similar to those of Deuteronomy
27-28 as well as to those of the Esarhaddon vassal treaties and the Sefire stelas. The
similarities involve both formal structure and traditional phraseology and vocabulary. By
their very contexts in the biblical materials, the blessings and curses are distinctly
covenantal.20 The blessings are directly related to the promised blessings and/or
privileges of both the Abrahamic and the Mosaic covenants. Likewise, the curses are
directly related to the nullification or removal of those same blessings and/or privileges.21
The blessings and curses do not in themselves indicate the presence of the
Deuteronomic Covenant in Leviticus 26.22 Any preview of that covenant in the pericope
must maintain a continuity with the two previous covenants. In other words, a third
covenant (whether here or in Deuteronomy 27-30) does not nullify the Abrahamic and
Contra Ronald E. Clements, Prophecy and
Tradition, in Growing Points in Theology (
Knox Press, 1975),16-17.
21 See above, 5-6, 8-9.
22 See above, 9-10.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 14
Obedience and Disobedience
"Obedience to Yahweh, the one God, who
jealous of his own uniqueness, defines the fundamental nature of the OT faith."23
Obedience reflects respect for who and what Yahweh is personally and historically (Lev
26:1-3, 13-15, 39-45). Obedience involves the acceptance of the lordship of Yahweh in
one's life in time and space (cf. vv. 2, 34-35, 43). Obedience produces participation in the
covenant blessings (v. 9). The precepts reveal
the will of God for
must be yielded to the will of Yahweh in order to be loyal to the covenants (cf. v. 41).
Disobedience is the denial of the identity of Yahweh in history, covenant, and law.
It is breach of covenant faith (v. 15). It is acting unfaithfully, disloyally, and treasonously
(v. 40). It is blatant opposition to God (vv. 21, 23, 27). It is nonperformance of His
commands (v. 14). It involves rejecting His statutes and despising His ordinances (v. 15).
It is a matter that is concerned with the inner man (vv. 15, 41, 43; note "soul" and
"heart"). Disobedience has frightful consequences. Even cannibalism is not beyond the
capability of the disobedient (v. 29). It causes the unacceptability of the sacrifices which
were the outward manifestation of faith (v. 31). Disobedience is worthy only of death
(vv. 25, 33, 37, 38) and exile (vv. 33, 44). Death is separation from the body; exile is
separation from the land.
Guilt (Nvf) is a concept occurring in verses 39, 40, 41, and 43. It is mentioned only
in the context of repentance, confession, humility, and restitution. The guilt resulting
from disloyalty to the covenant had to be recognized before the breached covenant could
be reinstated. The guilt was twofold: (1) the
guilt of the ancestors of
vv. 39, 40) and (2) the guilt of the current generation of Israelites (vv. 39, 40, 41, 43).
Confession of both was required for restoration. The guilt of the current generation is
given first consideration. Unless the current generation can recognize and deal with their
own guilt, it would be pointless to recognize and attempt to deal with the guilt of their
This guilt was so burdensome that it led to severe anguish among the exiled peoples
(v. 39). The guilt was real. The burden was real. It was not a temporary "guilt trip." Guilt,
properly recognized, is an instrument of God to draw them back to the covenant
relationship that they had enjoyed prior to their willful rebellion against Yahweh. The
guilt had to be confessed (v. 40).
Retribution and Chastisement
The application of the curses/penalties of verses 14-45 are highlighted by two
factors: (1) the gradation of the punishments in five stages of severity (vv. 16-17, 18-20,
21-22, 23-26, and 27-38)24 and (2) the recurring refrain, "seven times for your sins" (vv.
18, 21, 24, 28). The stages of chastisement are emphasized also by the occurrence of the
term "discipline" (rsy, vv. 18., 23, 28). The entire process, from start to finish, was
23 Zimmerli, Old Testament Theology, 116.
24 For an excellent discussion of the form, structure and setting of vv. 14-45, see John Hartley, Leviticus,
Word Biblical Commentary, vol. 4 (Dallas: Word Books, Publisher, 1992), 457-62.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 15
intended as a means of restoration. However, the primary purpose was not restoration,
but the glorification of the covenant God, Yahweh (cf. vv. 44, 45).
Retribution may be terminal (cf. vv. 25, 30, 38), but chastisement may result in
restoration through repentance (cf. vv. 39-45). Both are involved in Leviticus 26. Divine
retribution will come upon those who fail to confess their sins. Chastisement will be
administered to those who confess their sins.
In the refrain, "seven times"25 implies the sabbatical principle and "for your sins"
indicates breach of covenant. "Sin" is also a term applied to breach of covenant in the
vassal treaties of Esarhaddon.26 Leviticus 26 emphasizes the seal/sign of the Mosaic
Covenant, the sabbaths. Since the sabbaths were related to the land (vv. 34-35, 43), the
Abrahamic Covenant is at least implied. Yahweh would judge His people for their
nonobservance of the sabbaths, for their worship of idols and for the resulting defilement
of the people among whom He dwelt (cf. vv. 1-2, 29-31). Divine judgment is not a
betrayal of the covenants (v. 44). On the contrary, judgment declares that disobedience is
sin and that sin in rebellion against the Lord. Eventually, Yahweh's judgments would
increase to such an intensity and nature that there would be no doubt that He had
exercised His covenant rights to exact retribution from those who defy His authority.
Exile ("scattering among the nations," v. 33) was the ultimate penalty for breach of
covenant. It meant removal from the land of promise. The landedness for which the
nation had hoped would dissolve into the landlessness which had characterized their
heart" (v. 41) they would be placed among the uncircumcised--those who were outside
the covenants. Exile was a living death, a living separation from the land of abundant life.
meant removal from the setting in which
the Abrahamic and Mosaic covenants. Exile, however, need not be terminal. Exile,
landlessness, could be a condition that could give rebirth to hope (vv. 39-45).
Landlessness was not synonymous with divine rejection or abhorrence (v. 44). As at
Sinai, and in the wilderness, landlessness presented the people with a goal for life and a
meaning for history. The landless ones must cast their cares upon the one who would
guide them out of bondage to freedom. Even in the land of their enemies, Yahweh was
still their God (v. 44). The covenant relationship per se knows no geographical or
political boundaries. Yahweh’s loyalty is unaffected by the landedness or the
landlessness of His people. He is above the circumstances of history, working for the
repentance of His covenanted people so that His covenants might one day be fulfilled
25 Seven is more than just a symbolic number: "It is an appropriate and evocative number in view of the
importance of the seventh in Israelite religion" (Wenham, Leviticus, 331). Cf., also, Karl Elliger, Leviticus,
HAT 1/4 (Tubingen: Verlag von J. C. B. Mohr/Paul Siebeck, 1966), 375: "Naturlich ist 'sieben' eine
schematische Steigerungszahl" ("` Seven' is naturally a stylized number of intensity").
26 See D. J. Wiseman, The Vassal-Treaties of
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 16
The Hebrew word for "repentance" (bUw) does not occur in Leviticus 26. However,
the concept of repentance is found in a threefold turning of the exiled people to Yahweh:
(1) They would confess their guilt and the guilt of their fathers (v. 40), recognizing their
personal and corporate culpability. (2) They would humble their "uncircumcised heart"
(v. 41), bringing it into subjection to the precepts of Yahweh. Submission to the divine
Suzerain is required of a covenanted people. They must submit to Yahweh's lordship.
Their submission must not be mere external compliance externally in religious exercises;
it must be internal and real. (3) They would make restitution for their guilt (v. 41),
accepting the federal consequences of sin. Such restitution is not soteriological
redemption. It is the evidence, not the cause, of repentance and expiation. The impact of
sin would be felt until the land had enjoyed its restitution. Exile would continue after
repentance until the penalty had been fulfilled. Getting right with God does not insure
immediate blessing and a to solution uncomfortable circumstances. It does guarantee a
restoration to the covenant relationship whereby promised blessings might be renewed
once the land is regained.
"Restitution" (hcr) not only involves the full application of the federal
consequences of sin, but also the full application of that which is right in Yahweh's
covenanted relationship to the land (vv. 34-35, 43). Therefore, restitution has a twofold
character: positive (that which is right for the land-to enjoy its sabbaths) and negative
(that which is the just consequence of sin-the period of
fulfilled within time and space.
The very concept of law implies communication between its promulgator and its
recipients. Commandments, statutes, ordinances, laws and instructions must be revealed
since they cannot be intuitively perceived. In the ancient Near East the concept of
covenant itself demanded a deposit or record of the pact for future generations.
The diversity of covenant concepts and forms in Leviticus 26, as compared with the
ancient Near Eastern treaties, is an evidence of
the independent theology of
Among many scholars there is "a remarkable unwillingness to appreciate the creative
lies, in part, in its uniqueness at that particular stage of progressive revelation. The
27 Leviticus 26 contains some elements distinct from the vassal treaties of Esarhaddon and Sefire: blessings
(vv. 3-13), provision for reinstatement in case of transgression (vv. 14-45; esp. vv. 39-45), monotheism,
and covenantal precedents (vv. 42,45), In the vassal treaties there are imprecations requested by a third
party in the presence of a mediating. deity and the employment of ritual magic--neither of which occur in
the biblical covenants. For a more detailed study of this topic, see William D. Barrick, "Leviticus 26: Its
to Covenant Contexts and Concepts" (unpublished Th.D.
Theological Seminary, 1981),171-84.
28 Clements, Prophecy and Tradition, 21.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 17
confluent nature of the revelation (i.e., drawing upon current vocabulary, style, forms,
and cultural milieu) represents a desire on the part of Yahweh for revelation to be
immediately understandable and applicable.
Leviticus 26 claims to be Mosaic in time, content, and composition. The self-
witness of Scripture must suffice as the prima facie evidence. Unless equally ancient and
authentic documentation can be produced to explicitly deny the claims and contents of
this pericope, it must be allowed to stand. This must be true of both the historical claims
and the theological concepts. The treaties of Esarhaddon and Sefire cannot be offered as
contradictory testimony since they were composed 700 years too late and the differences
in subject matter, purpose, and structure disqualify them as legal testimony against the
biblical materials of Leviticus 26.
Leviticus 26 and the New Testament
The employment of verses 11-12 in 2 Corinthians 6:16 is the only concrete example
of the influence of Leviticus 26 on the revelation contained in the NT.29 The passage
from this pericope was employed in order that Paul might better emphasize the concept
of identification with God. It is unfortunate that Wenham did not deal with this NT usage
in his commentary.30 Wenham, however, does observe that the blessings and curses of
Leviticus 26 are expressed at least in principle by Christ's teachings in His pre-cross
ministry. The chastisement of
the Jews of Christ's day. Jesus also spoke of the eschatological reality of that
chastisement. Wenham claims that "many of the horrifying judgments described in Rev.
6ff. find their original setting in the covenant curses of Lev. 26 and Deut. 28."31 This is
true insofar as they are directly related by the
Book of Revelation to the nation of
Application of the covenant blessings and curses to the Gentiles is unwarranted (with the
exception of the blessing for all peoples mediated by Abraham's descendants; Gen 12:3).
the covenants were made with
The principles of God's dealings with NT believers by means of reward and/or
chastisement are basically the same
as the principles by which He dealt with
the covenants. This must not be construed, however, as meaning that the NT saints are
under the same covenant relationship as
to the same covenant. The very nature of God demands the federal consequences of sin
be exacted from His people in all ages (cf. Gal 6:7-10; 1 Cor 11:30). The same God
provides lessons for believers in every era based upon His historical deeds (cf. Rom 15:4;
1 Cor 10:11-13). The same God blesses in tangible ways those who are faithful (cf, 2 Cor
29 Paul's quotation of Lev 26:11-12 is paraphrastic. His emphasis was on the concept of identification with
God (Lev 26:12b). The apostle's omission of Lev 26:1 lb is a clue to his intention. That phrase does not
serve any purpose in Paul's discussion in the context of 2 Cor 6. Since he would omit Lev 26:11b ("and my
soul will not despise you"), he paraphrased 11a ("I will set my dwelling place in your midst"--cf. 2 Cor
6:16, "I will dwell among them"). Having established the concept and the context, Paul proceeded to quote
Lev 26:12. Elaborate discussions of conflation of OT texts, "pearl stringing," pre-Pauline usage, and 4Q
LXX Leva are made unnecessary by the simple reading of the NT text alongside the MT.
30 Wenham, Leviticus, 329-30, 333-34.
31 Ibid., 334.
32 Cf the postscript of Lev 26: "These are the statutes and the ordinances and the laws which Yahweh
established between himself and the Israelites on
is expressed in Exod 19:5-6 and Rom 9:4.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 18
9:6-15). The same God is loyal even in the face of His people's disloyalty (cf. 2 Tim
2:11-13; Phil 1:6). The same God is Lord (cf. 1 Cor 12:3). The same Lord requires
confession, humility, and restitution (cf. 1 John 1:9; 1 Pet 5:5-7; Phile 1-25). The same
God promises that obedient service will be rewarded (cf. 1 Cor 15:58). The same God
demonstrates that the believer has been delivered from bondage into a servitude that is
totally unlike the bondage of fear and the curse (cf. Rom 6:12-23; Heb 2:14-15; Acts
The Lord who by means of Leviticus 26 revealed
and perpetuity of the Abrahamic Covenant after the ratification of the Mosaic Covenant,
also confirmed that testimony in Galatians 3:17. NT believers must recognize that the
authority of one covenant does not annul the authority of a previous one. Any exceptions
are clearly revealed by God (e.g., Heb 7:11-14). The epistle to the Galatian churches
teaches that Abrahamic faith in Yahweh was not replaced by law under Moses.
Therefore, faith is still binding upon any man's relationship to the God of Abraham.
What then are the conclusions concerning the relationship of the Deuteronomic
Covenant to Leviticus 26?
(1) Leviticus 26 does not make any specific reference to the Deuteronomic
(2) Leviticus 26 has some similarities to Deuteronomy 27-30, the pericope
involved in the Deuteronomic Covenant. However, similarity does not mean
(3) Leviticus 26 explains
subsequent to the revelation of the Mosaic Covenant.
(4) Although Leviticus 26 contains
revelation relating to
subsequent repentance under the Mosaic Covenant (v. 45), it is not a formal
(5) Leviticus 26 emphasizes the Mosaic and Abrahamic covenants by direct
reference. The terminology and theological concepts contain less direct
references to those covenants. The relationship to these two covenants is so
imbedded in the text that any connotation regarding the Deuteronomic
Covenant must also involve a similar relationship between it and the previous
(6) The affinities between Leviticus 26 and Deuteronomy 27-30 are far more
intimate than any similarities to extrabiblical treaties. The common entities
(subject matter, language, historical context, author, and intent) of the two
pericopes tie them together. These affinities are the essence of the preview of
the Deuteronomic Covenant in Leviticus 26. Leviticus 26 is transitional
revelation for the nation of
Sinai and the Deuteronomic (or, Palestinian) Covenant granted on the plains
itself. It embodies only the concepts necessary to prepare the nation for
entrance into that covenant at a hater date.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus 26 19
The pericope, viewed in the context of the Sinai revelation and the Sinai apostasies,
offers a perspective not found elsewhere in the Scriptures. That perspective regards the
theological instruction of the nation of
wanderings. Unlike Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 4, Leviticus 26 is not a mini-statement
of the Mosaic Covenant. It is, instead, a compilation and synthesis of the combined truths
of both the Abrahamic and Mosaic covenants. The synthesis takes the form of a parenesis
taste of promise tempered by precept. It wrapped up the Sinai experience by appealing to
a continuity of authority and promise. Leviticus 26 is a theological treatise with
implications for living. Many fell in the wilderness because they failed to heed this
timely instruction. Because
teachings for NT believers struggling with apparent conflict between the Mosaic and
Abrahamic covenants (Gal 3:17).
Two areas of covenant were not discussed in this study since they were not explicit
in Leviticus 26: (1) the relationship of covenant to kingdom and (2) the relationship of
kingdom and covenant to the calendar of
present discourse. The writer believes that both areas are necessary adjuncts to the
theological core of Leviticus 26 if one is to understand properly the relationship of the
prophets to Leviticus 26 (and, to Deuteronomy 27-30). Leviticus 26 explicitly
proclaims the lordship of Yahweh in both time and space.
Inter-covenantal Truth and Relevance: Leviticus, 26 20
Barrick, William D. "Leviticus 26: Its Relationship to Covenant Contexts and Concepts."
Unpublished Th.D. dissertation.
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Clements, Ronald E. Prophecy and Tradition. Growing Points in Theology.
Knox Press, 1975.
Driver, S. R. An Introduction to the Literature of the Old
Meridian Library, 1956.
Eissfeldt, Otto. The Old Testament: An Introduction. Trans. Peter R Ackroyd. New
Elliger, Karl. Leviticus. HAT 1/4.
Gerstenberger, Erhard S. Leviticus: A Commentary. Trans. Douglas W. Stott. OTL.
Character of Cult Phenomena and the Historical Setting of the Priestly School.
Word Biblical Commentary, vol. 4.
Delbert R. Covenant: The History c f a
University Press, 1969.
Kline, Meredith G. By Oath Consigned: A Reinterpretation of the Covenant Signs of
Dennis T. Deuteronomy and the Death of Moses:
Charles Caldwell. The
Basis of the Premillennial Faith.
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alttestamentliche Wissenschaft 84 (1972): 447-59.
van Seters, John. "Confessional Reformulation in the Exilic Period," Vetus Testamentum
22 (1972): 448-59.
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Botterweck and Helmer Ringgren.
Trans. John T. Willis.
Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1975. 2:253-79.
Weinfeld, Moshe. Deuteronomy and the Deuteronomic
Gordon J. The Book of Leviticus.
Wijngaards, J. N. M. The Dramatization of Salvific History in the Deuteronomic Schools,
D. J. The Vassal-Treaties of
Zimmerli, Walther. Old Testament Theology in Outline. Trans. David E. Green.
John Knox Press, 1978.
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