Redemption has a practical everyday application in ordinary life as well as spiritually or religiously. How do we redeem our words, our promises and vows?
There’s a very clear link between this passage and 1 Samuel 1 where Hannah vows to the Lord that if He gives her a son, she will devote him to the Lord all the days of his life.
Samuel was given very early to the Lord, and heard God from a young age (1 Sam 1 v28 seems to indicate he worshipped God from an extremely young age, and then in chapter 3 we read Samuel’s calling by the Lord).
Samuel ushers in a pivotal change for Israel.
The people had been marked by many years of fluctuating spiritual life.
Rejecting God, punishment arrives, they cry out to God, He sends a judge, everything okay, judge dies and they reject God again.
And you know, when you think through Samuel and post-Samuel, that pattern continues. Having a King didn’t stop the people from fluctuating, from walking their path of disobedience and following after the world.
Notice here in Leviticus the language of both redemption and being devoted for destruction.
Samuel ordained the kings, and one of their jobs is to mete out any devoting to destruction.
Both Saul and David at times upheld this. But then in 1 Samuel 15 Saul refuses to obey God and keeps back everything he considered “of value”.
David is a better model (although still broken) of redemption and destruction. He takes back (redeems) God’s people from the world and devotes their enemies to destruction (similar to what Joshua did). But he didn’t always do this, and in the end he died.
Jesus, our true and forever King, the model and pattern – He will bring destruction in a final ultimate treading of the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty (Revelation 19).
Circling back around to v29 of this Leviticus passage, there is a clear foreshadowing of Jesus.
“No one devoted, who is to be devoted for destruction from mankind, shall be ransomed; he shall surely be put to death.”
Anyone who rejected God and His commands were to be devoted to destruction (Deuteronomy and Joshua, as well as 1 & 2 Samuel, show how this worked out). Both within and without Israel as a people.
Romans 5 v10 tells us that before being reconciled, we are God’s enemies.
Ezekiel 18 v4 tells us that the soul who sins shall die.
So we were devoted to destruction.
Paul gives us clarity of our hope in Romans 6 where he says,
“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Because He paid the penalty for our sin, Jesus was able to ransom and redeem us.
Hallelujah, what a Saviour!