God is gracious, holy, and present. As a book about how to worship and how to live, Leviticus unfurls these critical characteristics of God in relation to humanity. In the thirty-third volume in the Believers Church Bible Commentary series, Old Testament scholar Perry B. Yoder argues that the oft-neglected book of Leviticus discloses valuable truths, symbols, and practices of the New Testament. Traversing difficult interpretive territory such as the sacrificial system, purity laws, and priestly instructions, Yoder writes with a clarity and nuance that will interest a wide swath of readers. He eloquently poses for readers the focal question of Leviticus: how to live in the presence of God.
Perry B. Yoder is professor emeritus of Old Testament at Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary in Elkhart, Indiana. Yoder’s key interests are the Old Testament, particularly the Psalms; ecological responsibility; and peace and justice. He worked as People’s Teacher of the Word, traveling across North America doing Bible teaching 1975–77; was associate secretary for Peace and Social Concerns for the General Conference Mennonite Church, 1977–78. He taught at Bluffton College, Bethel College and Conrad Grebel College before coming to AMBS in 1985. He retired in 2005, but continues to teach Anabaptist Short Courses online.
“Perry B. Yoder’s clear and approachable study of Leviticus works with the most recent scholarship to unlock key theological ideas such as atonement, the holiness of an ethical life, and divine grace. This commentary will be of enormous help to both pastors and educated laypersons seeking to understand what can seem like a puzzling but fascinating biblical book.”
~David Janzen, Reviews
“Focusing on the text of Leviticus surfaces the question, ‘How do people live with a holy God?’ Perry B. Yoder guides the reader to consider obedient purity requisite for knowing and worshiping God. Reading with the text leads to the surprising discovery that God is gracious, not angry; friendly, not an exacting bookkeeper.”
~Lynn Jost, Reviews
“Perry B. Yoder teaches readers that Leviticus is not a book of ancient, cryptic rules but rather an invitation to encounter a gracious and holy God. Throughout his commentary, Yoder adeptly narrates Leviticus for followers of Jesus today. Yoder’s insightful, well-researched, and pastoral commentary will be a gift to preachers and students who seek to understand one of the Old Testament’s most underestimated books.”
~Melissa Florer-Bixler, Reviews
“Perry B. Yoder is a consummate teacher, with a singular gift for illuminating the biblical text, and with an eye to how it informs the church today. That gift is very much evident as he leads us into Leviticus, revealing a holy, gracious, and forgiving God, with directions for how to worship and live.”
~Gerald Gerbrandt, Reviews
“Perry B. Yoder provides an engaging study of Leviticus for the serious Bible student and the practicing Christian, disclosing a gracious God who invites obedience as well as sacrifice as a response of gratitude to God’s love. Yoder provides a measured approach to key New Testament texts and the doctrine of atonement.”
~Robert W. Neff, Reviews