Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary on the Whole Bible

Leviticus Ch.26 / 27 Ch.s


* Promises upon keeping the precepts. (1-13) Threatenings
against disobedience. (14-39) God promises to remember those
that repent. (40-46)

#1-13 This chapter contains a general enforcement of all the
laws given by Moses; by promises of reward in case of obedience,
on the one hand; and threatenings of punishment for
disobedience, on the other. While Israel maintained a national
regard to God's worship, sabbaths, and sanctuary, and did not
turn aside to idolatry, the Lord engaged to continue to them
temporal mercies and religious advantages. These great and
precious promises, though they relate chiefly to the life which
now is, were typical of the spiritual blessings made sure by the
covenant of grace to all believers, through Christ. 1. Plenty
and abundance of the fruits of the earth. Every good and perfect
gift must be expected from above, from the Father of lights. 2.
Peace under the Divine protection. Those dwell in safety, that
dwell in God. 3. Victory and success in their wars. It is all
one with the Lord to save by many or by few. 4. The increase of
their people. The gospel church shall be fruitful. 5. The favour
of God, which is the fountain of all Good. 6. Tokens of his
presence in and by his ordinances. The way to have God's
ordinances fixed among us, is to cleave closely to them. 7. The
grace of the covenant. All covenant blessings are summed up in
the covenant relation, I will be your God, and ye shall be my
people; and they are all grounded upon their redemption. Having
purchased them, God would own them, and never cast them off till
they cast him off.

#14-39 After God has set the blessing before them which would
make them a happy people if they would be obedient, he here sets
the curse before them, the evils which would make them
miserable, if they were disobedient. Two things would bring
ruin. 1. A contempt of God's commandments. They that reject the
precept, will come at last to renounce the covenant. 2. A
contempt of his corrections. If they will not learn obedience by
the things they suffer, God himself would be against them; and
this is the root and cause of all their misery. And also, The
whole creation would be at war with them. All God's sore
judgments would be sent against them. The threatenings here are
very particular, they were prophecies, and He that foresaw all
their rebellions, knew they would prove so. TEMPORAL judgments
are threatened. Those who will not be parted from their sins by
the commands of God, shall be parted from them by judgments.
Those wedded to their lusts, will have enough of them. SPIRITUAL
judgments are threatened, which should seize the mind. They
should find no acceptance with God. A guilty conscience would be
their continual terror. It is righteous with God to leave those
to despair of pardon, who presume to sin; and it is owing to
free grace, if we are not left to pine away in the iniquity we
were born in, and have lived in.

#40-46 Among the Israelites, persons were not always prosperous
or afflicted according to their obedience or disobedience. But
national prosperity was the effect of national obedience, and
national judgments were brought on by national wickedness.
Israel was under a peculiar covenant. National wickedness will
end in the ruin of any people, especially where the word of God
and the light of the gospel are enjoyed. Sooner or later, sin
will be the ruin, as well as the reproach, of every people. Oh
that, being humbled for our sins, we might avert the rising
storm before it bursts upon us! God grant that we may, in this
our day, consider the things which belong to our eternal peace.