The book of Leviticus is a rich treasure that guides believers to properly approach the presence of God. But the ending of the book is a mystery. At first glance chapter 27 seems to be disconnected from the rest of the book. The first 26 chapters talk about mandatory offerings, but the last chapter suddenly makes a switch to voluntary offerings.
Let me walk you through. God knew that when the people encountered His presence and blessing, there would be an extravagant response. People would promise to serve Him. People would promise to sacrifice. People would promise to give their favorite cow or sheep, houses, or lands.
If a special blessing occurred while they were beseeching God, they might vow to give themselves to the service of the tabernacle. If they were going through hard times and besought God for His intervention, and a special deliverance occurred, then they might vow to give their son to the service of the Lord, as did Hannah with Samuel.
Vows were a powerful force in that day, but sadly they are no longer. There was a time when one’s word was one’s bond. The last chapter of Leviticus teaches us exactly what the Preacher in Ecclesiastes was conveying:
“When you make a vow to God, do not be late in paying it, for He takes no delight in fools. Pay what you vow! It is better that you should not vow than that you should vow and not pay. Do not let your speech cause you to sin, and do not say in the presence of the messenger of God that it was a mistake. Why should God be angry on account of your voice and destroy the work of your hands?” (Ecclesiastes