The Dispensation of the Mosaic Law. The Fourth Commandment. The Sabbath. The Sabbatical Year of Israel

Grace Bible Church
Pastor Teacher
Robert R. McLaughlin
Tree of Life
Weekly Review 031818
The Dispensation of the Mosaic Law. The Fourth Commandment. The Sabbath. The Sabbatical Year of Israel

EXO 23:10-12, “And you shall sow your land for six years and gather in its yield, but on the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, so that the needy of your people may eat; and whatever they leave the beast of the field may eat. You are to do the same with your vineyard and your olive grove. Six days you are to do your work, but on the seventh day you shall cease from labor in order that your ox and your donkey may rest, and the son of your female slave, as well as your stranger, may refresh themselves.”

Notice for six years they were to sow the land and then gather its production or that which the land produced and then bless themselves as well as their family and friends.

In fact, they had a law of prosperity and appreciation as stated in

DEU 14:23-25, “And you shall eat in the presence of the Lord your God, at the place where He chooses to establish His name, the tithe of your grain, your new wine, your oil, and the first‑born of your herd and your flock, in order that you may learn to fear the Lord your God always. “And if the distance is so great for you that you are not able to bring the tithe, since the place where the Lord your God chooses to set His name is too far away from you when the Lord your God blesses you, then you shall exchange it for money, and bind the money in your hand and go to the place which the Lord your God chooses.”

Then look at DEU 14:26, “And you may spend the money for whatever your heart desires, for oxen, or sheep, or wine, or strong drink, or whatever your heart desires; and there you shall eat in the presence of the Lord your God and rejoice, you and your household.

The point being is that as God’s people, He wants us to enjoy and rejoice the blessings He has designed just for us.

Now, notice in EXO 23:11, but {on} the seventh year you shall let the land rest and lie fallow,

We noted last week that the Hebrew word fallow is used to cultivate land that is allowed to lie idle during the growing season so that it may grow and yield even more production after it grows.

And why does the Lord allow all this to happen?

So that the needy of your people may eat; and whatever they leave the beast of the field may eat. You are to do the same with your vineyard {and} your olive grove. In other words, all of us are to enjoy the blessings from the Lord.

As stated in MAT 5:45, for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

Now, back in LEV 25:1-8, The Lord then spoke to Moses at Mount Sinai, saying, “Speak to the sons of Israel, and say to them, ‘When you come into the land which I shall give you, then the land shall have a sabbath to the Lord. Six years you shall sow your field, and six years you shall prune your vineyard and gather in its crop, but during the seventh year the land shall have a sabbath rest, a sabbath to the Lord; you shall not sow your field nor prune your vineyard. Your harvest’s aftergrowth you shall not reap, and your grapes of untrimmed vines you shall not gather; the land shall have a sabbatical year. And all of you shall have the sabbath products of the land for food; yourself, and your male and female slaves, and your hired man and your foreign resident, those who live as aliens with you. Even your cattle and the animals that are in your land shall have all its crops to eat. You are also to count off seven sabbaths of years for yourself, seven times seven years, so that you have the time of the seven sabbaths of years, namely, forty‑nine years.”

This was the big test of supergrace.

Every seven years, the Jews were supposed to stop work.

If they had been functioning properly under supergrace, then this was really a year’s vacation in which they didn’t have to work.

Having followed so well the laws of divine establishment, and having functioned under the P.M.A. of B.D., they now took a break on the seventh year to exercise their capacity for life.

So, they did not work for a full year without any detriment to them. That my friends is a very serious time of Rest and relax. This was a great test to see if they had entered supergrace or not. Could they trust God to provide everything for them? If so, there was no problem.

If not, they were like squirrels who hadn’t gathered nuts for the winter. The Jews were to depend on God’s provision for one whole year.

Now it is very interesting that the failure of the Jews to observe the sabbatical year was the basis for determining how long they would stay out under the fifth cycle of discipline.

Lev 26:33-37, you, however, I will scatter among the nations and will draw out a sword after you, as your land becomes desolate and your cities become waste. Then the land will enjoy its sabbaths all the days of the desolation, while you are in your enemies’ land; then the land will rest and enjoy its sabbaths. all the days of {its} desolation it will observe the rest which it did not observe on your sabbaths, while you were living on it. as for those of you who may be left, I will also bring weakness into their hearts in the lands of their enemies. And the sound of a driven leaf will chase them and even when no one is pursuing, they will flee as though from the sword, and they will fall. they will therefore stumble over each other as if {running} from the sword, although no one is pursuing; and you will have {no strength} to stand up before your enemies.

From the Exodus until the first administration of the fifth cycle of discipline to the southern kingdom, they had accumulated 490 years in which they had not observed even one sabbatical year as a nation.

Over a period of 490 years they had accumulated seventy lost sabbatical years.

Now God, in His great sense of humor, told the southern kingdom in 586 B.C. that since they had missed seventy sabbatical years, therefore he would give them those seventy years in slavery.

Therefore, the first administration of the fifth cycle of discipline lasted for seventy years, LEV 26:33‑36; 2CH 36:20-21; DAN 9:2; JER 25:11‑12.

So the Jews had to be reminded about the Sabbath. Here we discover that they had a 7th year or a Sabbath year. For 6 years they planted as much as they wanted to and operated under the principle of free enterprise. But on the 7th year they were to stop. They were to stop all sowing and all planting!

God said that if they would stop on the 7th year and make a memorial to grace that grace would provide what they need.

Now the Jews would not! They completely rationalized the 7th year Sabbath away. In reality the Sabbath never meant a thing to most of the Jews.

And so when the first 7 year Sabbath came they didn’t observe it, 14 years later they again did not observe it.

”21 years later they again did not observe it, they just “let someone else do.”

They went on and on and on until finally in a period of 490 years in Jewish history they had missed 70 sabbath years (70 x 7 = 490).

So God said “Alright, you don’t want to rest when I tell you to…so I will give you rest. This is the principle of ISA 29:24;  and those who err in mind will know the truth, and those who criticize will accept instruction.

And so they went out for 70 years of captivity in Chaldea and Persia. And the Lord’s people just kept right on keepin on,

So the Sabbatical Year of Israel was also ignored.

It was to be followed but as usual the Jews rejected that which commemorated the grace of God.

Under the agriculture economy of Israel each 7th year they were to stop all work and live off the profits of the 6 years production. This gave the land a rest. This allowed the people to rest (some leisure time).

It was a test of their faith-rest, could they trust God to provide in the 7th year.

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