The people take an oath that binds them by the Law of Moses. They specifically guarantee their adherence to the following laws: intermarriage, the sabbath day and year, the temple upkeep, the first fruits, the first born, and the tithes.
The people swear to bring the first fruits: “And [we undertake] to bring to the House of the LORD annually the first fruits of our soil, and of every fruit of every tree.” (v. 36)
III. Important Verses
vv. 29-32: “And the rest of the people, the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, the temple servants, and all who separated themselves from the peoples of the lands to [follow] the Teaching of God, their wives, sons and daughters, all who know enough to understand, join with their noble brothers, and take an oath with sanctions to follow the Teaching of God, given through Moses the servant of God, and to observe carefully all the commandments of the LORD our Lord, His rules and laws. “Namely: We will not give our daughters in marriage to the peoples of the land, or take their daughters for our sons. The peoples of the land who bring their wares and all sorts of foodstuff for sale on the sabbath day — we will not buy from them on the sabbath or a holy day. We will forgo [the produce of] the seventh year, and every outstanding debt.”
vv. 33-35: “We have laid upon ourselves obligations: To charge ourselves one-third of a shekel yearly for the service of the House of our God — for the rows of bread, for the regular meal offering and for the regular burnt offering, [for those of the] sabbaths, new moons, festivals, for consecrations, for sin offerings to atone for Israel, and for all the work in the House of our God. We have cast lots [among] the priests, the Levites, and the people, to bring the wood offering to the House of our God by clans annually at set times in order to provide fuel for the altar of the LORD our God, as is written in the Teaching.”
1-30. The leaders sign and the people agree an oath 31-40. The particular stipulations 31. Intermarriage 32. Sabbath and the sabbatical year 33-34. Temple upkeep 35. Fuel for the altar 36. The first fruits 37. The firstborn 38-40. Tithes
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VI. Works Used
(see “Commentaries” page)
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