II. THE UNCLEANNESS OF THE MALE’S BIRTH BEING FOR SEVEN DAYS, AND THAT OF THE FEMALE’S BEING FOR FOURTEEN DAYS
The uncleanness of the male’s birth is for seven days, but that of the female’s is for fourteen days (vv. 2, 5a). This signifies that the male (representing the strong ones) is fully (signified by the seven days) unclean in spite of his strength, and that the female (representing the weak ones) is doubly (signified by the fourteen days) unclean in her weakness. This shows us that the females are twice as unclean as the males. The numbers seven and fourteen indicate this. Seven is the number of fullness, and fourteen is two times seven. The “seven days” in verse 2 signify fully unclean, unclean in full, and the “two weeks” (fourteen days) in verse 5a signify twice this uncleanness.
III. AFTER THE BIRTH OF A MALE, THE WOMAN REMAINING IN THE UNCLEANNESS OF THE BLOOD FOR THIRTY-THREE DAYS, AND AFTER THE BIRTH OF A FEMALE, FOR SIXTY-SIX DAYS
After the birth of a male, the woman was to remain in the uncleanness of the blood for thirty-three days, and after the birth of a female, for sixty-six days (vv. 4a, 5b). This signifies that the uncleanness of a male’s birth should be tested (signified by the forty days—seven days plus thirty-three days) for cleanness, and that the uncleanness of a female’s birth should be doubly tested (signified by the eighty days—fourteen days plus sixty-six days) for cleanness. In the Bible the number forty denotes a period of testing. The children of Israel wandered in the wilderness for forty years, and the Lord Jesus was tempted, that is, tested, for forty days. Because the birth of a human being is altogether unclean, it required a test for cleanness. The birth of a male was tested for forty days, and the birth of a female was doubly tested for eighty days.
IV. DURING THE TEST OF THE UNCLEANNESS, THE WOMAN NOT BEING ALLOWED TO TOUCH ANY HOLY THING OR GO INTO THE SANCTUARY
During the test of the uncleanness, the woman was not allowed to touch any holy thing or go into the sanctuary (v. 4). This signifies that man is not allowed to touch the things concerning God or go into the presence of God until his uncleanness is dealt with.
How can our uncleanness be dealt with? The next two points, which are crucial, will answer this question.
V. ON THE EIGHTH DAY AFTER THE BIRTH THE MALE BEING CIRCUMCISED
On the eighth day after the birth the male was to be circumcised (v. 3). This signifies that the flesh of the unclean person should be put aside through the death of Christ that he might be brought into the resurrection of Christ, not only to be cleansed but also to have a new beginning of life (Col. 2:11-12).
After a week of seven days, there is the eighth day. The eighth day is a new start, the start of a new week. In the Bible the eighth day refers to Christ’s resurrection. Resurrection, of course, is a new start. Death ends the old course, and resurrection begins a new course and is therefore a new start.
As Christians, we have had two starts. We had the first start when we were born in uncleanness and into uncleanness. We were born to be uncleanness. In nationality we may be different, but in our real being we are all the same. Every human being, regardless of race, is born uncleanness. This was our first start.
According to God’s plan, God’s economy, He has made a way for us to have a second start, a new start. God counts in weeks. The end of a week is the end of a course, which is followed by a new course. Our new course is not in the original creation but in resurrection. We were born in the old creation, but we were reborn a new creation. In the first start, we were in the category of the old creation, which is signified by seven days. In God’s economy, the course of human life is seven days. After being born into the old creation, we stayed there for just seven days. Then on the eighth day, the day of Christ’s resurrection, we had a new start.
We should be full of joy whenever we come across the words “the eighth day” or “the first day of the week” (John 20:1, 19, 26) in our reading of the Bible. Today, as believers in Christ, we are not in the first seven days—we are in the eighth day. We are in the second course. This course is eternal, for in Christ we shall live forever. The Lord Jesus said, “Everyone who lives and believes in Me shall by no means die forever” (John 11:26). Whereas our second course is eternal, our first course is very short, only seven days. Whether we are saved early in life or at an advanced age, in the sight of God our first course is only a week in length. God in His economy has shortened our first course, but He has prolonged our second course, even making it eternal just as He Himself is eternal.
(Life-Study of Leviticus, Chapter 38, by Witness Lee)