SBC Banner


Wednesday in the Word

Second Baptist Church

November 7, 2018

Leviticus 11:9-30

  1. One of the best ways to understand Leviticus is to know that the rules in Leviticus are supposed to reveal Christ and how we are to live in Christ. Jesus is the interpretation tool of the book. We have to see how these rules show us the Lord. Let us recap the first eight verses from our last study. We are now looking at the verses concerning what foods make a person ritually clean or unclean. We know that Jesus abolishes the notion of clean and unclean food in Mark 7 and Acts 10 because the clean food was a picture of HIM. To be clean is to be right with God, so the foods are a picture of what it means to live righteously before God. It means to have accepted Jesus as Lord and Savior. In the first eight verses, we are told about eating the animals that have split/cloven hooves, and who chew their cud. The person who lives righteously must eat a land animal that does both. So what is the significance of this kind of animal? We know that the animals with the split hooves are used to thresh or separate wheat from the chaff, and the animals who chew their cud, regurgitate their food to chew it and swallow it more than once. When we eat the animal with the split/cloven hooves, we eat Jesus. Jesus is the word of God; he is in us separating soul from spirit, earth from heaven, discerning our wicked intentions from the pure intentions of the will of the Father that we are to do. Jesus separates ideas, thoughts, motives, and intentions in our minds. This is not something that we do for others. Paul says the sword of the Spirit is the word of God, Jesus. Jesus is the sword that divides, just as he said he was bringing. But, note the sphere of this sword’s activity. Ephesians 6:18 says the sword of the Spirit, the word of God, Jesus, is wielded by “praying at all times, with all prayer and supplication.” Eating JESUS is also eating THE ANIMAL THAT CHEWS THE CUD. When we are first saved, we are like newborn infants. See 1 Peter 2:2, Hebrews 5:12-14. When we are young in Christ, we feed on milk. We need to eat as much as we can quickly. We should read as much of the scripture as quickly as we can so that we can learn as much about Jesus as possible and grow quickly. But, later we need to eat solid food, which is harder to digest. We still need to eat a lot of the word of God, but we should chew him just enough that we can swallow him. Then, when we enter the wilderness, where we don’t get fed, we can chew the cud. Now, we can meditate on the deeper things to grow in our powers of discernment and ability to separate good from evil. Living righteously is about meditating on the word, and allowing it to be applied to our lives. We must do both.

  2. Verses 9-12. The Israelites are told that the only kind of fish they can eat are fish that have both scales and fins. These kinds of fish don’t eat dead things and don’t feed off the bottom. They also are actually in the water, but have a type of armor. Eating the fish with scales is a picture of putting on the armor of God as we travel through this world. Eating these kinds of fish is also a sign of not eating the dead things of the world. When we live without our armor on, we will lead defeated lives. When we eat or consume the “dead things” of this world, the things that don’t lead to life, we will find ourselves seeking after the things in this world that don’t please God. Fish with fins and scales also have digestive systems that are designed to filter out toxins, whereas the other animals in the sea absorb toxins much more easily into their meat. We might be exposed to the world, but we should be able to quickly filter out what is not good and not let it become part of us.

  3. Verses 13-19. Next, we are told about what birds to stay away from. The birds of the air that are predators, scavengers, and birds that see better in darkness. These birds swoop down on their prey. This is a reminder to stay away from people who prey on others and becoming predators ourselves. These birds also love to feast on rotten flesh. This is a reminder to stay far away from people who love to feast on the things that are “dead and stinking.” These types of birds fly around waiting for stuff to die. They are the garbage cans of the land. Rot is in their mouths and they are attracted by the smell and sight of death. Some of these birds listed see best at night. Their eyes are more for the dark than the light. This is a reminder that we should not get accustomed to walking in darkness and living in the dark.

  4. Verses 20-25. The kinds of flying insects that can be eaten are those that are the noisiest, the kind with two pairs of wings, and the kind that eat mostly vegetables. Crickets, Katydids, and grasshoppers make noise in the darkness. They use their wings and legs to make sounds. This is a reminder for us to praise God in the darkness. Praise God in the world. We are to make noise. We are to be heard in the darkness when others can’t see. They also eat only living things like leaves and plants. Those that live for Christ must be noticeable for Christ even in the darkness.

  5. Verses 26-30. The Israelites are told to avoid eating or touching the animals that are predators and the animals that eat dead flesh. The animals with paws are predators and weasels and rats are predators as well. Lizards will eat rotten flesh as well. Avoiding these foods is a picture to us to not go around seeking whom we could prey on. We are to be about life, not death. These kinds of animals also like to hide or live under or behind things. They avoid being out in the open. They are always hiding their motives. They sneak up on their prey. They are opportunists that rob and steal. These animals display characteristics that are the opposite of a Child of God living in Christ.

click here to select another lesson