Monday, September 30, 2013

Leviticus 23:34-43



Leviticus 23:34-43

Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto the Lord.
On the first day shall be an holy convocation: ye shall do no servile work therein.
Seven days ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord: on the eighth day shall be an holy convocation unto you; and ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord: it is a solemn assembly; and ye shall do no servile work therein.
These are the feasts of the Lord, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, to offer an offering made by fire unto the Lord, a burnt offering, and a meat offering, a sacrifice, and drink offerings, every thing upon his day:
Beside the sabbaths of the Lord, and beside your gifts, and beside all your vows, and beside all your freewill offerings, which ye give unto the Lord.
Also in the fifteenth day of the seventh month, when ye have gathered in the fruit of the land, ye shall keep a feast unto the Lord seven days: on the first day shall be a sabbath, and on the eighth day shall be a sabbath.
And ye shall take you on the first day the boughs of goodly trees, branches of palm trees, and the boughs of thick trees, and willows of the brook; and ye shall rejoice before the Lord your God seven days.
And ye shall keep it a feast unto the Lord seven days in the year. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations: ye shall celebrate it in the seventh month.
Ye shall dwell in booths seven days; all that are Israelites born shall dwell in booths:
That your generations may know that I made the children of Israel to dwell in booths, when I brought them out of the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.

a. The Feast of Tabernacles was one of the three “pilgrim feasts”, (Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles). They were referred to those names because during the Feasts Israel was required to come to Jerusalem to celebrate them.

1). Exodus 23:14-17 Three times thou shalt keep a feast unto me in the year.
Thou shalt keep the feast of unleavened bread: thou shalt eat unleavened bread seven days, as I commanded thee, in the time appointed of the month Abib; for in it thou camest out from Egypt: and none shall appear before me empty: (Passover)
And the feast of harvest, the firstfruits of thy labours, which thou hast sown in the field (Pentecost) and the feast of ingathering, which is in the end of the year, when thou hast gathered in thy labours out of the field.(Tabernacles)
Three times in the year all thy males shall appear before the Lord God.

b. During the feast of Tabernacles there were a particular set of sacrifices to be offered during the certain eight days.

1). Numbers 29:12-39 And on the fifteenth day of the seventh month ye shall have an holy convocation; ye shall do no servile work, and ye shall keep a feast unto the Lord seven days:
13 And ye shall offer a burnt offering, a sacrifice made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the Lord; thirteen young bullocks, two rams, and fourteen lambs of the first year; they shall be without blemish:
14 And their meat offering shall be of flour mingled with oil, three tenth deals unto every bullock of the thirteen bullocks, two tenth deals to each ram of the two rams,
15 And a several tenth deal to each lamb of the fourteen lambs:
16 And one kid of the goats for a sin offering; beside the continual burnt offering, his meat offering, and his drink offering.
17 And on the second day ye shall offer twelve young bullocks, two rams, fourteen lambs of the first year without spot:
18 And their meat offering and their drink offerings for the bullocks, for the rams, and for the lambs, shall be according to their number, after the manner:
19 And one kid of the goats for a sin offering; beside the continual burnt offering, and the meat offering thereof, and their drink offerings.
20 And on the third day eleven bullocks, two rams, fourteen lambs of the first year without blemish;
21 And their meat offering and their drink offerings for the bullocks, for the rams, and for the lambs, shall be according to their number, after the manner:
22 And one goat for a sin offering; beside the continual burnt offering, and his meat offering, and his drink offering.
23 And on the fourth day ten bullocks, two rams, and fourteen lambs of the first year without blemish:
24 Their meat offering and their drink offerings for the bullocks, for the rams, and for the lambs, shall be according to their number, after the manner:
25 And one kid of the goats for a sin offering; beside the continual burnt offering, his meat offering, and his drink offering.
26 And on the fifth day nine bullocks, two rams, and fourteen lambs of the first year without spot:
27 And their meat offering and their drink offerings for the bullocks, for the rams, and for the lambs, shall be according to their number, after the manner:
28 And one goat for a sin offering; beside the continual burnt offering, and his meat offering, and his drink offering.
29 And on the sixth day eight bullocks, two rams, and fourteen lambs of the first year without blemish:
30 And their meat offering and their drink offerings for the bullocks, for the rams, and for the lambs, shall be according to their number, after the manner:
31 And one goat for a sin offering; beside the continual burnt offering, his meat offering, and his drink offering.
32 And on the seventh day seven bullocks, two rams, and fourteen lambs of the first year without blemish:
33 And their meat offering and their drink offerings for the bullocks, for the rams, and for the lambs, shall be according to their number, after the manner:
34 And one goat for a sin offering; beside the continual burnt offering, his meat offering, and his drink offering.
35 On the eighth day ye shall have a solemn assembly: ye shall do no servile work therein:
36 But ye shall offer a burnt offering, a sacrifice made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the Lord: one bullock, one ram, seven lambs of the first year without blemish:
37 Their meat offering and their drink offerings for the bullock, for the ram, and for the lambs, shall be according to their number, after the manner:
38 And one goat for a sin offering; beside the continual burnt offering, and his meat offering, and his drink offering.
39 These things ye shall do unto the Lord in your set feasts, beside your vows, and your freewill offerings, for your burnt offerings, and for your meat offerings, and for your drink offerings, and for your peace offerings.

c. During the Feast of Tabernacles and possibly during the other pilgrim feasts is when the Israelites brought their tithes and offerings.

1). Deuteronomy 16:16, 17  Three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the Lord thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, and in the feast of tabernacles: and they shall not appear before the Lord empty:
Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord thy God which he hath given thee.

d. It was during the Feast of Tabernacles that Solomon dedicated the newly built Temple.

1). 1 Kings 8:1-66

2). 2 Chronicles 5:1-7:10

e. The Water Libation Ceremony [The Feasts of the LORD, Kevin Howard, Marvin Rosenthal, pp.138, 139] “During the Feast of Tabernacles, the intense anticipation of rain came to be reflected in the Temple Services. Each morning of Tabernacles, a water libation (sacrificial pouring out of a liquid) was offered to the Lord as a visual prayer for rain. Shortly after dawn each morning, while the many sacrifices were being prepared, the high priest was accompanied by a joyous procession of music and worshippers down to the Pool of Siloam. The high priest carried a golden pitcher capable of holding a little more than a quart of water. He carefully dipped the pitcher into the pool and brought it back to the Temple Mount. At the same time, another procession went down to a nearby location south of Jerusalem known as Motza where willows of the brook grew in great abundance. There they gathered the long, thin willows and brought them back to the Temple. At the Temple, the willows were placed on the sides of the altar so that their tops formed a canopy of drooping branches over the altar. Meanwhile, the high priest with the water from the Pool of Siloam had reached the southern gate of the Temple. It was known as the Water Gate because of this ceremony. As he entered, three blasts of the silver trumpets sounded from the Temple, and the priests with one voice repeated the words from Isaiah, “Therefore with joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation” (Isaiah 12:3). The high priest slowly proceeded to the great stone altar in the Inner Court of the Temple and ascended the right side of the ramp. At the peak, he turned to the left where there were two silver basins which drained to the base of the altar. One was reserved for the regular drink offerings (libations of wine) and one for the water libations during this feast. As the high priest raised the golden pitcher to pour the water offering, the people shouted, “Raise your hand!” In response, the high priest lifted his hand higher and poured, allowing the people to verify his action… As the high priest poured out the water libation before the Lord, a drink offering of wine was simultaneously poured into the other basin. Three blasts of the silver trumpets immediately followed the pouring and signaled the start of the Temple music. The people listened as a choir of Levites sang the Hallel (i.e., the praise Psfalms 113-118). At the proper time, the congregation waved their palm branches toward the altar and joined in the singing: “Save now, I pray, O LORD; O LORD, I pray, send now prosperity” (Psalm 118:25). At the same time the priests, with palm branches in hand, marched around the altar…The custom of carrying branches and singing psalms during the Feast of Tabernacles is of ancient origin. It dates back at least to the time of Maccabees, some 165 years before Christ (Cf. 2 Maccabees 10:6, 7). The water-drawing ceremony is also form antiquity. Although debate exists as to whether Isaiah alluded to the water-drawing ceremony (Isaiah 12:3) or the ceremony was derived from the words of Isaiah, it is known that the ceremony was in use at least 100 years before the time of Jesus.”     

f. Jesus celebrated the Feast of Tabernacles. The whole of John 7 loosely focuses on the debates among the Jewish leaders and the people concerning Jesus, whether he was the Messiah or not.

g. It was on the last day of the feast and scholars believe during the great Water Libation Ceremony that Jesus cried out the words of John 7:37, 38.

1). John 7:37-39 In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink.
He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.
(But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Leviticus 18:22

Leviticus 18:22

Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.

a. NLT: “Do not practice homosexuality, having sex with another man as with a woman. It is a detestable sin.

b. NIV: “ ‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable.

c. Amplified Bible: You shall not lie with a man as with a woman; it is an abomination.

d. Septuagint: And thou shalt not lie with a man as with a woman, for it is an abomination.

e. Stone Edition Torah/Writings/Prophets: You shall not lie with a man as one lies with a woman, it is an abomination.

1. Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind

a. lie [7901 * shakab][Strong: a primitive root; to lie down (for rest, sexual connection, decease or any other purpose):--X at all, cast down, ((lover-))lay (self) (down), (make to) lie (down, down to sleep, still with), lodge, ravish, take rest, sleep, stay.

b. mankind [2145 * zakar][Strong: properly, remembered, i.e. a male (of man or animals, as being the most noteworthy sex):--X him, male, man(child, -kind).

c. as with [4904 * mishkab][Strong:  a bed (figuratively, a bier); abstractly, sleep; by euphemism, carnal intercourse:--bed((-chamber)), couch, lieth (lying) with.]

d. womankind [802 * ‘ishshah][Strong:  irregular plural, nashiym {naw-sheem'}; a woman (used in the same wide sense as ''enowsh' (582)):--(adulter)ess, each, every, female, X many, + none, one, + together, wife, woman. Often unexpressed in English.]

1). I must repeat here what I mentioned in the notes on Leviticus 18:1-4 : An interesting fact about this passage is that the use of the Hebrew word for “ordinance” used in describing the “ordinances” of God and the “ordinances” of Canaan are the same Hebrew word. The word for ordinances is [2708 * [huqqah][Gesenius: that which is established or defined, law, ordinance, practice, custom, right, privilege.] The rest of chapter 18 in Leviticus, particularly verses 6-23 then lists a whole range of immoral sexual practices that the cultures of Egypt and Canaan not only practiced but made ordinances concerning them. It looks as if there were laws on the books in Egypt and in the Canaanite nations regarding their incest, their child sacrifice, their homosexuality, their bestiality. They codified their immorality into their legal systems, they legislated their immorality. Hence, Leviticus 18:22 is one of many sexually immoral behaviors that Canaanite culture legally protected their citizens to engage in.

2). The New Testament And Homosexuality, Robin Scroggs, pp 71, 72. “Only with the codification of the Priestly code in the fifth-fourth centuries B.C.E. does an explicit law emerge which deals with male homosexuality in general (Leviticus 18:22; 20:13). The prohibition in Leviticus 18:22 is terse: “With a male you shall not lie (shakav) the lyings of a woman; it is an abomination” (au. trans.). The awkwardness of the sentence is caused by the fact that there is no technical term for homosexuality in Hebrew. Nevertheless the meaning is clear. Shakav is frequently used to denote sexual intercourse; thus the sentence is a general prohibition of male homosexuality.”

a). Don Costello: Because he clings to a myth that certain portions of the five books of Moses weren’t written until the fourth or fifth centuries B.C.E,  he is rejecting Moses’ authorship of Leviticus, thus calling Jesus a liar. Jesus accepted Moses’ authorship of Leviticus as evidenced by citing him to the leper and calling on him to be obedient to what Moses wrote. Moses wrote concerning leprosy in Leviticus 13 & 14.

b). Matthew 8:4  And Jesus saith unto him, See thou tell no man; but go thy way, shew thyself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them.

c). Don Costello: The instruction concerning the “gift” that Jesus spoke of concerning Moses writing is listed in Leviticus 14.

3). Don Costello: The Torah, the law, was received on Mt. Sinai in the third month after they had departed from Egypt. Deuteronomy was written in the 40th year after the deliverance from Egypt, (Deuteronomy 1:3; 31:24-26). Thus all 5 books of the Torah, the Law were written within 40 years of their leaving Egypt.

a). Deuteronomy 1:3 And it came to pass in the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first day of the month, that Moses spake unto the children of Israel, according unto all that the Lord had given him in commandment unto them;

b). Deuteronomy 31:24-26  And it came to pass, when Moses had made an end of writing the words of this law in a book, until they were finished,
31:25 That Moses commanded the Levites, which bare the ark of the covenant of the Lord, saying,
31:26 Take this book of the law, and put it in the side of the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God, that it may be there for a witness against thee.

4). The New Testament And Homosexuality, Robin Scroggs, p72. “Male homosexuality is but one of several crimes listed as punishable by death in this chapter; that is, it is not singled out as a uniquely heinous sin.”

a). Don Costello: Rabbinic commentary says differently, Rabbinic Commentary, Stone Edition Tanach: Note 18:22 None of the relationships forbidden earlier are described with this term, an abomination, a term of disgust, because they involve normal activity, though with prohibited mates. Homosexuality, however, is unnatural and therefore abominable.

5). What The Bible Really Says About Homosexuality, David Helminiak, pp. 52, 52, 53. “The book of Leviticus calls male homogenital acts an abomination. That means it was considered unclean. The early Israelites thought it was dirty. It was prohibited not because it was wrong in itself but because it offended sensitivities. The Book of Leviticus associated those sensitivities with Israelite religion and made homogenital acts a ritual violation. So according to Leviticus  male-male sex was abominable because it offended religious sensitivities. Homogenitality made a man like a Canaanite. And to the Israelites, God’s chosen people, that was unacceptable…All the evidence points to the same conclusion. An analysis of the Holiness Code and its cultural context and as study of the Hebrew and Greek terms used in the Leviticus text both show that Leviticus 18:22 forbids male homogential acts because of their cultural and religious implications. But Leviticus makes no statement about the morality of homogenital acts as such. That was evidently not a concern in the Hebrew Testament. Therefore, it is a misuse of the bible to quote Leviticus as an answer for today’s ethical question, whether gay sex is right or wrong. Leviticus was not addressing this question.”

a). This is 180 degrees apart what Jewish Commentary says, Rabbinic Commentary, Stone Edition Tanach: Note 18:22 None of the relationships forbidden earlier are described with this term, an abomination, a term of disgust, because they involve normal activity, though with prohibited mates. Homosexuality, however, is unnatural and therefore abominable.

b). Don Costello: The level of mental gymnastics defenders of homosexuality go when discussing a text amazes me. The fact that their interpretations deceive anybody is also amazing. It demonstrates not only their own deception but the “willingness” of people to be deceived 92 Timothy 3:13).

6). What The Bible Really Says About Homosexuality, David Helminiak, p. 56. “Circumcision and the purity requirements of the Jewish Law were part of being a Jew. They were not necessarily part of being a good person, just and righteous before God. Jesus knew the difference. He is very clear that being a good person and keeping the requirements of the Jewish Law are not the same thing. He is also very clear that the only thing that matters is being a good person. One of the reasons Jesus was killed was because he challenged the real importance of the Law. “Listen and understand”,  he said. It is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a person, but it is what comes out of the mouth that defiles…What comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart, and this is what defiles. For out of the heart come evil intentions, murder, adultery, fornication, theft, false witness, slander. These are what defile a person, but to eat with unwashed hands does not defile.” (Matthew 15:10, 18-20). In that way Jesus rejected the importance of the Jewish purity/uncleaness laws. The only purity that mattered to Jesus was “purity of heart”.

a). Helminiak incredibly claims Jesus was rejecting “the importance of the Jewish purity/uncleanness laws”. The laws of the Old Covenant are not what Jesus was challenging, but Helminiak in his willingness to deceive leaves out the contextual verses that precede what Jesus said. The preceding verses clearly reveal what Jesus was challenging.

(1) Matthew 15:1-9 Then came to Jesus scribes and Pharisees, which were of Jerusalem, saying,
Why do thy disciples transgress the tradition of the elders? for they wash not their hands when they eat bread.
But he answered and said unto them, Why do ye also transgress the commandment of God by your tradition?
For God commanded, saying, Honour thy father and mother: and, He that curseth father or mother, let him die the death.
But ye say, Whosoever shall say to his father or his mother, It is a gift, by whatsoever thou mightest be profited by me;
And honour not his father or his mother, he shall be free. Thus have ye made the commandment of God of none effect by your tradition.
Ye hypocrites, well did Esaias prophesy of you, saying,
This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.
But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men.

(2) Jesus was clearly challenging the “traditions of the elders” i.e., manmade laws, and the effect of their tradition their laws that circumvented the word of God. Jesus rejected manmade laws, not the God inspired Mosaic Law. Jesus would never tell a Jew under the Old Covenant to violate that Covenant. Jesus was an observant Jew, he was a minister of circumcision, (Romans 15:8). He preached “keeping the law” (Matthew 19:17, 18; Matthew 23:23). The debate between jesus and the Pharisees in Matthew 15:1-20 not on the so called purity laws, but on the tradition of the elders. Jesus was condemning the Pharisees and Scribes practice of exalting their own man made tradition to the same level and even above the word of God. They subverted Scripture in order to keep their man made tradition.

2. “…it is abomination.”

a. abomination [8441 * tow’ebah][Strong: properly, something disgusting (morally), i.e. (as noun) an abhorrence; especially idolatry or (concretely) an idol:-- abominable (custom, thing), abomination.]

b. Rabbinic Commentary, Stone Edition Tanach: Note 18:22 None of the relationships forbidden earlier are described with this term, an abomination, a term of disgust, because they involve normal activity, though with prohibited mates. Homosexuality, however, is unnatural and therefore abominable.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

The Confusion of the Tithe and the Firstfruits




The Confusion of the Tithe and the Firstfruits

1. Leviticus 27: 30-33 And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord's: it is holy unto the Lord.
And if a man will at all redeem ought of his tithes, he shall add thereto the fifth part thereof.
And concerning the tithe of the herd, or of the flock, even of whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the Lord.
He shall not search whether it be good or bad, neither shall he change it: and if he change it at all, then both it and the change thereof shall be holy; it shall not be redeemed.

2. Proverbs 3:9, 10 Honour the LORD with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase:
So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine.

a. I got born again almost 37 years ago. During that time I attended a church for a total 25 years and for 17 of those years I had the responsibility of praying over the offering. Every time an offering was given during those years, I prayed over it and helped collect it and a majority of those times helped count it. Because of that responsibility I was led of the Lord frequently to do various studies of giving in the Bible. The giving of the tithes (all three of them), the offerings, the sacrifices, any example of giving I would study, some more exhaustive than others. During those years I cited many different passages that instruct on offering and giving to encourage believers in their giving, especially about giving their tithe. I probably cited the passage in Proverbs 3. I have seen and heard many times the above passage used interchangeably with giving the tithe, as a result, a good many Christians believe as I did at one time, that the tithe and the firstfruits are one in the same. Scripture though, gives a different perspective which I hope to show. The following four examples are a sample of the school of thought that teaches the tithe and firstfruits are one in the same. 

1). Harper’s Bible Commentary, p.230. Deuteronomy 26: “In the context of Deuteronomy, these firstfruits must be taken to be the same as the annual tithe (Deuteronomy 12:17-18; 14:22-27) brought to the central sanctuary and enjoyed by all.”

2). Catholic Commentary on Holy Scripture, p273, Deuteronomy 26: “The relation between this offering and that of tithes is not clear; the fact that verses 1-11, like the law on tithes (14:22), is followed by the requirements for the triennial tithes (compare Deuteronomy 26:12-15 with 14:28), suggest a connection.”

3). Collegeville Bible Commentary, p223, Deuteronomy 26: “Verses 1-11 deal with the annual tithe of agricultural products made by the grateful Israelite”.

4). John Avanzini, “Financing the End Time Harvest, God’s Way”, p.102: Many people will pay all of their bills, and then, after all of the bills are distributed, they will tithe to God out of the remaining money. That may be a common practice, but child of God, it is not what the Bible teaches in Deuteronomy 26:2, 10, 12a…The process of bringing the First Fruits (before the bills) to God is called the tithe.”

b. Scripture clearly teaches that the tithe and the firstfruits were two completely different offerings and each had a different destination when given. The first command concerning the tithe is listed at the end of Leviticus.

1). Leviticus 27:30-33 And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land, or of the fruit of the tree, is the Lord's: it is holy unto the Lord.
And if a man will at all redeem ought of his tithes, he shall add thereto the fifth part thereof.
And concerning the tithe of the herd, or of the flock, even of whatsoever passeth under the rod, the tenth shall be holy unto the Lord.
He shall not search whether it be good or bad, neither shall he change it: and if he change it at all, then both it and the change thereof shall be holy; it shall not be redeemed.

2). In Numbers 18, the chapter that outlines exactly the responsibilities of the offerings of Israel, the LORD tells Aaron the tithe was to go to the tribe of Levi because they had no inheritance of land. The LORD was their inheritance.

a). Numbers 18:20-24 And the Lord spake unto Aaron, Thou shalt have no inheritance in their land, neither shalt thou have any part among them: I am thy part and thine inheritance among the children of Israel.
And, behold, I have given the children of Levi all the tenth in Israel for an inheritance, for their service which they serve, even the service of the tabernacle of the congregation.
Neither must the children of Israel henceforth come nigh the tabernacle of the congregation, lest they bear sin, and die.
But the Levites shall do the service of the tabernacle of the congregation, and they shall bear their iniquity: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations, that among the children of Israel they have no inheritance.
But the tithes of the children of Israel, which they offer as an heave offering unto the Lord, I have given to the Levites to inherit: therefore I have said unto them, Among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance.

c. However, also in Numbers, the LORD instructed Aaraon that the destination of the firstfruits was to go to the priests.

1). Numbers 18:8-19 “And the LORD spake unto Aaron, Behold, I also have given thee the charge of mine heave offerings of all the hallowed things of the children of Israel; unto thee have I given them by reason of the anointing, and to thy sons, by an ordinance for ever.
This shall be thine of the most holy things, reserved from the fire: every oblation of theirs, and every meat offering of theirs, and every sin offering of theirs, and every trespass offering of theirs, which they shall render unto me, shall be most holy for thee and thy sons.
In the most holy place shalt thou eat it; every male shall eat it: it shall be holy unto thee.
And this is thine; the heave offering of their gift, with all the wave offerings of the children of Israel: I have given them to unto thee, and to thy sons and to thy daughters with thee, by a statute for ever: every one that is clean in thy house shall eat of it.
All the best of the oil, and all the best of the wine, and of the wheat, THE FIRSTFRUITS OF THEM WHICH THEY SHALL OFFER UNTO THE LORD, THEM HAVE I GIVEN THEE.
And whatsoever is first ripe in the land, which they shall bring unto the LORD, shall be thine; every one that is clean in thine house shall eat of it.
Every thing devoted in Israel shall be thine.
Every thing that openeth the matrix in all flesh, which they bring unto the LORD, whether it be of men or beasts, shall be thine: nevertheless the firstborn of man, shalt thou surely redeem, and the firstling of unclean beasts shalt thou redeem.
And those that are to be redeemed from a month old shalt thou redeem, according to thine estimation, for the money of five shekels, after the shekel of the sanctuary, which is twenty gerahs.
But the firstling of a cow, or the firstling of a sheep, or the firstling of a goat, thou shalt not redeem; they are holy: thou shalt sprinkle their blood upon the altar, and shalt burn their fat for a offering made by fire, for a sweet savour unto the LORD.
And the flesh of them shall be thine, as the wave breast and as the right shoulder are thine.
All the heave offerings of the holy things, which the children of Israel offer unto the LORD, have I given thee, and thy sons and thy daughters with thee, by a statute for ever: it is a covenant of salt for ever before the LORD unto thee and to thy seed with thee.”

2). Notice carefully that the first fruits were to go to the priesthood, along with other offerings, but the tithe is not in the list.

d. A second passage that determines the destination of the firstfruits is given again by Moses in Deuteronomy.

1). Deuteronomy 26:1-11 “And it shall be, when thou art come in unto the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, and possessest it, and dwellest therein;
That thou shalt take of the first of all the fruit of the earth, which thou shalt bring of thy land that the LORD thy God giveth thee, and shalt put it in a basket, and shalt go unto the place which the LORD thy God shall choose to place his name there.
And thou shalt go unto the priest that shall be in those days, and say unto the LORD they God, that I am come unto the country which the LORD sware unto our fathers for to give us.
And the priest shall take the basket out of thine and, an set it down before the altar of the of thy God.
And thou shalt speak and say before the LORD thy God,  A Syrian ready to perish was my father, and he went down into Egypt, and sojourned there with a few, and became there a nation, great, mighty, and populous:
And the Egyptians evil entreated us, and afflicted us, and laid upon us hard bondage.
And when we cried unto the LORD God of our fathers, the LORD heard our voice, and looked on our affliction, and our labour, and our oppression:
And the LORD brought us forth out of Egypt with a mighty hand, and with an outstretched arm, and with great terribleness, and with signs, and with wonders:
And he hath brought us into this place, and hath given us this land, even a land that floweth with milk and honey.
And now, behold, I have brought the firstfruits of the land, which thou, O LORD, hast given me. And thou shalt set it before the LORD thy God, and worship before the LORD thy God:
And thou shalt rejoice in every good thing which the LORD thy God hath given unto thee, and unto thine house, thou, and the Levite, and the stranger that is among you.”

a). The first reason to believe this passage is specifically referring to the firstfruits, is because two verses specifically mention the firstfruits. Deuteronomy 26:2 says, “thou shalt take of the first of all the fruit”, and Deuteronomy 26:10 says, “And now, behold I have brought the firstfruits of the land”

b). The second reason is the destination of the offering: In Deuteronomy 26:3 it says, “Thou shalt go unto the priest…”, Deuteronomy 26:4 says, “the priest shall take the basket out of thine hand…”

c). It is very clear from the passages above that because the tithe goes to the Levite and the firstfruits go to the priesthood, that they are two separate offerings.

e. Another witness to the different regulations regarding the tithe and the firstfruits is given in Nehemiah 10:35-37. In agreement with the passages in Numbers and Deuteronomy , the following witness says the firstfruits went to the priest and tithe went to the Levites.

1). Nehemiah 10:35-37 “And to bring the firstfruits of our ground, and the firstfruit of all fruit of all trees, year by year, unto the house of the LORD:
Also the firstborn of our sons, and of our cattle, as it is written in the law, and the firstlings of our herds and of our flocks, to bring to the house of our God, unto the priests that minister in the house of our God:
And that we should bring the firstfruits of our dough, and our offerings, and the fruit of all manner of trees, of wine and of oil, unto the priests, to the chambers of the house of our God; and the tithes of our ground unto the Levites, that the same Levites might have the tithes in all the cities of our tillage.”

f. Many of the topics, persons and institutions of the Old Covenant as important as they were then and are now, are merely shadows of not only the New Covenant but also the millennial reign of Jesus Christ and beyond.

1). Hebrews 10:1 “For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things,…”

2). Colossians 2:16,17 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the Sabbath days:
Which are a shodow of things to come; but the body is of Christ.

a). The Temple in Jerusalem was ordained by God to be the center piece of Jewish worship: Deuteronomy 12:5. Yet it was a shadow of Jesus and us.: 1 Corinthians 3:16.

b). The Priesthood of the Old Covenant was a shadow of the High Priesthood of Jesus Christ Hebrews 3:1; and the universal priesthood of the New Testament believer: 1 Peter 2:5.

3). Likewise, the firstfruits of the Old Covenant were shadows of images in the New Covenant, none of which had anything to do with money

a). The firstfruits of the Spirit: Romans 8:23

b). The first people saved in an area: Romans 16:5.

c). “Christ the firstfruits” referring to the order of his resurrection, 1 Corinthians 15:23.

d). “The firstfruits unto God and to the Lamb”, in Revelation 14:4, refer to the 144,000 of Revelation 14:1.

e). In James 1:18 it says, speaking of us, that “we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.”

4). Kenneth E. Hagin, in his book, The Midas Touch, A Balanced Approach to Biblical Prosperity, said this about the firstfruits. “Making a New Testament application of Old Testament technicalities violates every principle of Bible interpretation, especially when there isn’t a single New Testament usage of the word “firstfruits” in the context in which it is being preached by some ministers. The concept of firstfruits is not used in the New Testament in reference to financial giving. There is not even the vaguest hint of it by any New Testament writer in reference to money or the support of ministers.”

g. Conclusion: Scripture is clear. The tithe went to the Levites, and the firstfruits went to the priests. Proverbs 3:9, 10 does not refer to the Old Covenant practice of tithing, and neither does Deuteronomy 26:1-11. Both passages are referring to the Old Covenant practice of offering the firstfruits.