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Deuteronomy - Chapter 26

Bible Study Notes
Deuteronomy 26:1-11 When the Israelites arrive in Canaan, they shall take some of the first fruits of the ground to the Priest at the place God appoints. The Priest shall set the basket of fruit next to the altar and the one who gave the basket shall respond by retelling the story of how they, the children of their father, Jacob, the Aramean, came to Egypt in few numbers and came out a mighty number by the power of the Lord and put them in a land flowing with milk and honey. He will then ask the Lord to accept the offering of the fruit that the Lord had given him and worship Him and rejoice.

Notes: Baskets of the firstfruits of the first harvest reaped by Israel once they were in the land of Canaan were to be taken to the tabernacle. 

A wandering Aramean. This phrase referred to Jacob, who was each Israelite’s father or ancestor. When Jacob fled from his home in Beersheba he passed through Syria (Aram) to Mesopotamia to live with Laban his uncle. (Aramean definition: A member of an ancient Aramaic-speaking people inhabiting Aram (modern Syria) and part of Babylonia in the 11th–8th centuries BC). Aramean refers to Genesis 28:5 which says, “Thus Isaac sent Jacob away. And he went to Paddan-aram, to Laban, the son of Bethuel the Aramean (Syrian), the brother of Rebekah, Jacob's and Esau's mother. Aram was the Hebrew designation for the nation of Syria, so the Arameans mentioned in the Bible are Syrians.

Deuteronomy 26:12-19 They are to remember the third year tithe for the benefit of the Levite, sojourner, fatherless, and widow so they may eat and be filled. He is to state that he has obeyed all that the Lord commanded him and ask for God’s blessing on themselves and the ground given to them. The Israelites were told to be careful to do all the Lord commanded them. In return, the Lord proclaims that Israel shall be His treasured possession as He has promised, and if Israel keeps His commandments, He wills set them in praise and in fame and in honor high above all nations and be a people holy to the Lord.

Notes: the tithe. The tithe collected every third year of Israel in the land of Canaan. Apparently this tithe was not taken to the central sanctuary, but distributed locally to Levites, immigrants, widows, and orphans.

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