After the Lord brings you into the land of the Canaanites and gives it to you, as he promised on oath to you and your ancestors, 12 you are to give over to the Lord the first offspring of every womb. All the firstborn males of your livestock belong to the Lord. 13 Redeem with a lamb every firstborn donkey, but if you do not redeem it, break its neck. Redeem every firstborn among your sons.
14 ‘In days to come when your son asks you, “What does this mean?” say to him, “With a mighty hand the Lord brought us out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. 15 When Pharaoh stubbornly refused to let us go, the Lord killed the firstborn of both people and animals in Egypt. This is why I sacrifice to the Lord the first male offspring of every womb and redeem each of my firstborn sons.” 16 And it will be like a sign on your hand and a symbol on your forehead that the Lord brought us out of Egypt with his mighty hand.’
“Curiosity killed the cat”
– Agent Vega.
“It also cured polio.”
– Simon, The Mentalist
Much of this chapter repeats material we have seen before, but…
‘What is new here is the emphasis on teaching one’s children the meaning of the feast; it is necessary for each new generation not only to remember and understand God’s past acts but also to “appropriate them” – that is, be encouraged and instructed and motivated by them. Teaching one’s children about the greatness and mercy of God and the need to obey His commands remains the solemn duty of parents right up to our own day.’ Tom Hale: ‘The Applied Old Testament Commentary’, p.228.
Children are naturally curious. They ask lots of questions. If they see the evidence, the emblems, the example of our faith at home they will want to know about more. Christian parents should be always ready to give a reason for their hope in Christ.
(By the way, Mary presented Jesus, her firstborn, to the Lord, in accordance with God’s command: Luke 2:22,23; see Ex.13;2, 12).
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