Leviticus 13:29-59 … STOPPING THE SPREAD OF LEPROSY AND MOULDS.
Q.1. How did God put procedures in place to stop the spread of disease? Were all ailments treated the same? (Lev.13:29-46) =
Q.2. What was the point of the guidelines for treating marks and moulds on garments of Israel? – (Lev.13:47-59) =
29 “When a man or woman has a disease on the head or the beard, 30 the priest shall examine the disease. And if it appears deeper than the skin, and the hair in it is yellow and thin, then the priest shall pronounce him unclean. It is an itch, a leprous disease of the head or the beard. 31 And if the priest examines the itching disease and it appears no deeper than the skin and there is no black hair in it, then the priest shall shut up the person with the itching disease for seven days, 32 and on the seventh day the priest shall examine the disease. If the itch has not spread, and there is in it no yellow hair, and the itch appears to be no deeper than the skin, 33 then he shall shave himself, but the itch he shall not shave; and the priest shall shut up the person with the itching disease for another seven days. 34 And on the seventh day the priest shall examine the itch, and if the itch has not spread in the skin and it appears to be no deeper than the skin, then the priest shall pronounce him clean. And he shall wash his clothes and be clean. 35 But if the itch spreads in the skin after his cleansing, 36 then the priest shall examine him, and if the itch has spread in the skin, the priest need not seek for the yellow hair; he is unclean. 37 But if in his eyes the itch is unchanged and black hair has grown in it, the itch is healed and he is clean, and the priest shall pronounce him clean.
38 “When a man or a woman has spots on the skin of the body, white spots, 39 the priest shall look, and if the spots on the skin of the body are of a dull white, it is leukoderma that has broken out in the skin; he is clean.
40 “If a man’s hair falls out from his head, he is bald; he is clean. 41 And if a man’s hair falls out from his forehead, he has baldness of the forehead; he is clean. 42 But if there is on the bald head or the bald forehead a reddish-white diseased area, it is a leprous disease breaking out on his bald head or his bald forehead. 43 Then the priest shall examine him, and if the diseased swelling is reddish-white on his bald head or on his bald forehead, like the appearance of leprous disease in the skin of the body, 44 he is a leprous man, he is unclean. The priest must pronounce him unclean; his disease is on his head.
45 “The leprous person who has the disease shall wear torn clothes and let the hair of his head hang loose, and he shall cover his upper lip[a] and cry out, ‘Unclean, unclean.’ 46 He shall remain unclean as long as he has the disease. He is unclean. He shall live alone. His dwelling shall be outside the camp.
47 “When there is a case of leprous disease in a garment, whether a woolen or a linen garment, 48 in warp or woof of linen or wool, or in a skin or in anything made of skin, 49 if the disease is greenish or reddish in the garment, or in the skin or in the warp or the woof or in any article made of skin, it is a case of leprous disease, and it shall be shown to the priest. 50 And the priest shall examine the disease and shut up that which has the disease for seven days. 51 Then he shall examine the disease on the seventh day. If the disease has spread in the garment, in the warp or the woof, or in the skin, whatever be the use of the skin, the disease is a persistent leprous disease; it is unclean. 52 And he shall burn the garment, or the warp or the woof, the wool or the linen, or any article made of skin that is diseased, for it is a persistent leprous disease. It shall be burned in the fire.
53 “And if the priest examines, and if the disease has not spread in the garment, in the warp or the woof or in any article made of skin, 54 then the priest shall command that they wash the thing in which is the disease, and he shall shut it up for another seven days. 55 And the priest shall examine the diseased thing after it has been washed. And if the appearance of the diseased area has not changed, though the disease has not spread, it is unclean. You shall burn it in the fire, whether the rot is on the back or on the front.
56 “But if the priest examines, and if the diseased area has faded after it has been washed, he shall tear it out of the garment or the skin or the warp or the woof. 57 Then if it appears again in the garment, in the warp or the woof, or in any article made of skin, it is spreading. You shall burn with fire whatever has the disease. 58 But the garment, or the warp or the woof, or any article made of skin from which the disease departs when you have washed it, shall then be washed a second time, and be clean.”
59 This is the law for a case of leprous disease in a garment of wool or linen, either in the warp or the woof, or in any article made of skin, to determine whether it is clean or unclean.
Q.1. How did God put procedures in place to stop the spread of disease? Were all ailments treated the same? (Lev.13:29-46) = The priests were given responsibilities for the religious and medical needs of the people. God gave very specific instructions for treating various ailments and diseases (Leviticus Chapters 13-15). Victims with confirmed leprosy were separated from the rest of the Israelites, and had to live outside the camp – The priest shall surely pronounce him unclean … He shall remain unclean all the days during which he has the infection; he is unclean. He shall live alone; His dwelling shall be outside the camp (Lev.13:44 & 46 c.f. Lev.13:29-31, 40-46). The priests were also given criteria to help them identify other skins abnormalities which were not contagious (Lev.13:38-39). Should a leper see anyone coming near, he was to cry out that he was unclean (Lev.13:45). This was a terrible plight to be in, and illustrated the separation from God that all sinners experience. The story in 2 Kings recorded an incident when God miraculously saved the besieged city of Samaria from the Arameans, by using four lepers who were dwelling outside the city as required by the law (c.f. 2 Kgs.7:1-20).
Q.2. What was the point of the guidelines for treating mildew on garments in Israel? – (Lev.13:47-59) = Mildew contaminated with leprosy would spread, and cause further disease unless managed properly. The Lord gave the priests clear guidelines on how to treat all garments which were affected by this mildew. If the treatment was unsuccessful, the garments were to be disposed of by burning – This is the law for the mark of leprosy in a garment of wool or linen … or in any article of leather, for pronouncing it clean or unclean (Lev.13:59 c.f. Lev.13:47-59). The priests were God’s agents who had the responsibility of minimising the damage done to His people. What a gracious God He is! He is Jehovah Rapha – Israel’s Healer (Exo.15:26).
(Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.)
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