God calls His people to His holiness
1 And the LORD called to Moses and spoke to him out of the tabernacle of the congregation saying, 2 Speak to the children of Israel and say to them, If any man from among you brings an offering to the LORD, you are to bring your offering from the cattle, from the herd, and from the flock. 3 If his offering is a burnt sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a male without blemish: he is to offer it of his own free will at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the LORD. 4 He is to lay his hand on the head of the burnt offering; and it will be accepted for him to make atonement for him.
- Psalm 50:1 The mighty God, even the LORD, has spoken, and called the earth from the rising of the sun to its going down.
- Matthew 11:28 Come to me, all you that labor and are heavily loaded down, and I will give you rest.
5 And he is to kill the young bull before
the LORD: and the priests, Aaron's sons are to bring the blood and sprinkle the
blood around on the altar that is by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. 6 And he is to skin the burnt offering, and cut it into pieces. 7 And the sons of Aaron the priest are to put fire
on the altar and lay the wood in order on the fire: 8 And the priests, Aaron's sons, will lay the parts, the head and the fat, in order on the wood that is on the fire on the altar: 9 But he is to
wash its inside parts and its legs in water: and the priest will burn all of it on the altar to be a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the LORD.
- The inner parts and legs being washed spoke of Christ’s perfect inner life being open to scrutiny for our outward observance of its perfection.
- For 1900 years the life of Christ stands in history without equal.
- It was our sins that killed Christ.
- Our works are not acceptable to God.
- Only this holy work of God’s love is acceptable in His sight.
- Hebrews 9:22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.
- Exodus 12:13A nd the blood will be to you for a token on the houses where you are: and when I see the blood, I will pass over you, and the plague will not be on you to destroy you, when I strike the land of Egypt.
- Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
10 And if his offering is of the flocks, of the sheep, or of the goats, for a burnt sacrifice; he is to bring a male without blemish. 11 And he is to kill it on the north side of the altar before the LORD: and the priests, Aaron's sons, will sprinkle his blood around on the altar. 12 And he is to cut it into pieces with its head and its fat: and the priest will lay them in order on the wood that is on the fire that is on the altar: 13 But he is to wash the inner parts and the legs with water: and the priest will bring it all and burn it on the altar: it is a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the LORD. 14 And if the burnt sacrifice for his offering to the LORD is from birds, then he is to bring his offering of turtledoves or of young pigeons.
- God’s holiness, righteousness, justice, and His goodness are infinite.
- We could never attain to such heights and be suitable to dwell with God.
- Yet His love also is infinite.
- Even the poorest people could bring turtle doves to offer.
- God excludes no willing person.
- Cain brought his offering in Genesis 4 with a wrong heart.
- He wanted God’s approval of his own works, rather than humbling himself in knowledge that he wasn’t good enough because he wasn’t holy.
15 And the priest will bring it to the altar, wring off his head, and burn it on the altar; its blood is to be wrung out at the side of the altar: 16 And he is to pluck away its crop with its feathers, and throw them beside the altar on the east side, by the place of the ashes: 17 And he is to tear it by its wings, but not divide it apart: and the priest will burn it on the altar, on the wood that is on the fire: it is a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, a soothing aroma to the LORD.
- Not dividing the bird apart portrays Christ’s words “I and my Father are one (John 10:30).”
- They are not divided in any way. They are totally One in all thought and action.
- His death on our behalf totally consumed our sins.
- No single offering could show the many faceted work of our Lord for us.
- The night before Christ died for the sins of the world He changed the system of sacrifices to the bread and the cup of our communion service.
- If we were to continue offering animal sacrifices today, that would say that what Jesus did wasn’t enough.
- 2Corinthians 5:19…God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses to them; and has committed unto us the word of reconciliation.
- Colossians 2:13-14 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, has he made alive together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; 14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross.
God made a way
1 And when a person brings near and offering, a food offering to Jehovah/ the LORD, his offering is to be of fine flour; and he will pour oil on it, and put frankincense on it: 2 And he is to bring it to Aaron's sons, the priests: and he is to take out a handful of flour with its oil, with all of its frankincense; and the priest is to burn as incense its memorial offering on the altar, an offering made by fire, of a sweet fragrance to the LORD: 3 And what is left of the food offering will be Aaron's and his sons': it is a thing most holy of the offerings of the LORD made by fire.
- Christ was crushed for us and the fragrance of God’s love was revealed.
- Right worship is sweet to Him.
- God provided for the priests through the offerings of the people.
- The food offering showed Christ as the bread of life.
- John 6:35 And Jesus said to them, I am the bread of life: he that comes to me will never hunger; and he that believes on me will never thirst.
- John 4:23-24 But the hour comes, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeks such to worship him. 24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
4 And if you bring an offering of food baked in the oven, it is to be unleavened
cakes of fine flour mixed with oil, or unleavened wafers anointed with oil. 5 And if your offering is a food offering baked in a pan, it is to be of fine flour unleavened, mixed with oil. 6 You are
to break it in pieces and pour oil on it: it is a food offering. 7 And if your offering is a food offering made in the frying pan, it is to be made of fine flour with oil. 8 You are to bring the food
offering that is made of these things to the LORD: and when it is presented to the priest, he will bring it to the altar. 9 And the priest will take from the food offering a memorial of it and will
burn it on the altar: it is an offering made by fire, a sweet fragrance tothe LORD. 10 And what is left of the food offering will be Aaron's and his sons': it
is a thing most holy of the offerings of the LORD made by fire.
- Each offering was a sacrificial present brought near to God.
- The unleavened cakes of ‘fine flour mixed with oil’ are a perfect picture of Christ filled with the Holy Spirit.
- Leaven represented sin. It causes decay. Like yeast puffs up the bread dough, so pride puffs up in man’s heart so that there is no place for God.
- Christ never took an offering to the temple for anything.
- He is the one that all the offerings spoke of. He needed no covering for sin because He never sinned.
- Therefore no leaven was allowed in the food offering.
- The oil represents the Holy Spirit.
- God has anointed us with His Holy Spirit.
- Joshua 13:14 Only to the tribe of Levi he gave no inheritance; the sacrifices of the LORD God of Israel made by fire are their inheritance, as he said to them.
- Matthew 3:16-17 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, behold, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: 17 And behold a voice from heaven saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.
- Hebrews 9:14 How much more does the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?
11 No food offering that you bring to the LORD, is to be made with leaven: for you are to burn no leaven, or any honey in any offering of the LORD made by fire. 12 As for the offering of the first fruits, you are to offer them to the LORD: but they are not to be burnt on the altar for a sweet fragrance. 13 And you are to season every offering of your food offering with salt; you will not allow the salt of the covenant of your God to be lacking from your food offering: with all your offerings you are to offer salt.
- Honey represented the natural sweetness of man, which also is not acceptable to God in man’s sinful condition.
- Salt was a monetary exchange in the ancient world.
- It had worth as a preservative.
- Meat was packed in salt to kill the germs and keep the meat from decay.
- It was used on wounds to prevent infection.
- A person entering a home was sprinkled with salt meaning that person was sworn to protection and friendship of that house and family forever.
- God’s work in our lives is like salt. It penetrates us, preserves us, and heals us.
- Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
- Exodus 15:26… for I am the LORD that heals you.
14 And if you offer a food offering from your first fruits to
the LORD, you are to offer for the food offering of your firstfruits, green ears of
food dried by the fire, even grain beaten out of full ears. 15 And you are to put oil on it, and lay frankincense on it: it is a food offering. 16 And the priest will burn the memorial of it, part of
its beaten grain and part of its oil with all its frankincense: it is an offering made by fire to the LORD.
- The first fruits were the first ripe foods.
- They symbolize what belongs to God first because all things come from Him (Romans 11:36):
- The first of our increase as well as the first of our love (Deuteronomy 6:5).
- Living this way brings great harmony and blessing to each day.
- This is not unreasonable because God “gives us life and breath and all things’ “ for in Him we and move and have our being (Acts 17:25, 28).” Frankincense is for remembrance. “This do in remembrance of me (Luke 22:19).”
- Psalm 103:2-5 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and do not forget all his benefits: 3 Who forgives all your iniquities; who heals all your diseases; 4 Who redeems your life from destruction; who crowns with loving-kindness and tender mercies; 5 Who satisfies your mouth with good things; so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
1 And if his offering is a sacrifice of peace offering, if he offers it from the herd; whether it is a male or female, he is to offer it without blemish before the LORD. 2 And he will lay his hand on the head of his offering and kill it at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation: and Aaron's sons, the priests, will sprinkle the blood around on the altar. 3 And he will offer of the sacrifice of the peace offering an offering made by fire to the LORD; the fat that covers the intestines, all the fat that is on the intestines 4 and the two kidneys, the fat that is on them, which is by the flanks and the lobe above the liver, with the kidneys, he is to take it off. 5 And Aaron's sons will burn it on the altar on the burnt sacrifice that is on the wood that is on the fire: it is an offering made by fire, a sweet fragranceto the LORD.
- The whole human race has been looking for peace throughout the centuries— precious quietness of heart that gives rest.
- Christ is our peace with God by faith.
- He made peace between sinful man and our holy Maker.
- In an agricultural society, these offerings taught people God’s plan and provision for their life, their salvation, and their peace by a means they could understand.
- Christ is without blemish.
- Fat was the most precious part of the animal.
- It was the LORD’S. He is most precious. The innermost part of us belongs to Him.
- Isaiah 48:22 There is no peace, says the LORD, to the wicked.
- Ephesians 2:13-15 But now in Christ Jesus, you who were once far away are made near by the blood of Christ. 14 For he is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of partition between us; 15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; to make in himself, from two, one new man, by this making peace;
6 And if his offering for a sacrifice of peace offering to the LORD is from the flock, male or female, he is to offer it without blemish. 7 If he offers a lamb for his offering, then he is to offer it before the LORD. 8 And he is to lay his hand on the head of his offering and kill it in front of the tabernacle of the congregation: and Aaron's sons will sprinkle its blood around on the altar.
- God does not accept our good works to bring us into His presence.
- Nothing we can do is good enough.
- But Christ is sinless and lived a perfect life.
- God accepts that.
- The hand on the head of the offering said, ‘this one’ dies in my place. We earned death.
- We don’t understand what sin is until we learn who God is and perceive His holiness, His infinite being that is exalted far above all. He is not like us. He is high and holy.
- Isaiah 64:6 But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all fade like a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
- Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
- Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
- Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
9 He is to offer from the sacrifice of the peace offering an offering made by fire to the LORD, its fat and the whole rump, he is to take it off close to the backbone; and the fat that covers the intestines, all the fat that is on the intestines, 10 the two kidneys, the fat that is on them which is by the flanks and the lobe above the liver with the kidneys, he is to take it off. 11And the priest will burn it on the altar: it is the food of the offering made by fire to the LORD.
- Fire totally consumed the offering.
- This shows us that Christ was totally sacrificed for us, not just part of Him such as an arm or a leg and our sins are totally consumed.
- Psalm 103:11-14 For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him. 12 As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us. 13 Like a father pities his children, so the LORD pities them that fear him. 14 For he knows our frame; he remembers that we are dust.
12 And if his offering is a goat, then he is to offer it before the LORD. 13 He is to lay his hand on its head and kill it before the tabernacle of the congregation: and the sons of Aaron will sprinkle its blood around on the altar. 14 He is to offer from his offering an offering made by fire to the LORD: the fat that covers the intestines, all the fat that is on the inner parts, 15 the two kidneys and the fat that is on them which is by the flanks, and the lobe above the liver with the kidneys; he is to take it off. 16 And the priest will burn them on the altar: it is the food of the offering made by fire for a sweet fragrance: all the fat is the LORD's. 17 It is a perpetual statute for your generations throughout all your dwellings that you eat no fat or blood.
- Blood was the sign of God’s covenant with man.
- Blood also transports all the waste from the cells to the excreting organs for removal.
- What God forbids is for man’s good.
- God’s commands are for our protection.
- Today we know the harm of too much fat in the diet.
- God wants the best for His people. That includes enjoying good health.
- Ephesians 2:8 For by grace are you saved through faith and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
- Ephesians 2:13 But now, in Christ Jesus, you who sometimes were far away are made near by the blood of Christ.
- John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you: not as the world gives, do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
God has spoken to us and made Himself clear
1 And the LORD spoke to Moses saying, 2 Speak to the children of Israel, saying, If a soul sins through ignorance against any of the commandments of the LORD concerning things that should not be done, and acts against any of them: 3 If the priest that is anointed sins like the sin of the people; then let him bring for his sin that he has sinned, a young bull without blemish to the LORD for a sin offering. 4 He is to bring the bull to the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the LORD; and is to lay his hand on the bull's head and kill the bull before the LORD. 5 And the priest that is anointed will take of the bull's blood, and bring it to the tabernacle of the congregation: 6 And the priest will dip his finger in the blood, and sprinkle from the blood seven times before the LORD, before the veil of the sanctuary.
- The offering was to be without imperfection because Jesus is without blemish.
- The priest who sinned was the one who killed the animal that he brought. Just like our sins killed Jesus.
- Remember whenever you see blood in scripture in worship that it represents God’s blood shed for us because of His great love for us. This is holy.
- Scripture is from God, our Maker and our future Judge.
- 2 Peter 1:21 For the prophecy did not come in ancient times by the will of man: but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.
- 2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God (God-breathed), and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 that the man of God may be perfect thoroughly furnished unto all good works.
7 And the priest will put some of the blood on the horns of the altar of sweet incense before the LORD which is in the tabernacle of the congregation; and will pour all the blood of the bull at the bottom of the altar of the burnt offering which is at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. 8 And he will take off all the fat of the bull for the sin offering: the fat that covers the intestines, all the fat that is on the inner parts, 9 the two kidneys and the fat that is on them which is by the flanks, and the lobe above the liver with the kidneys, he is to take it off, 10 like it was taken off the bull of the sacrifice of peace offerings: and the priest will burn them on the altar of the burnt offering. 11 But the skin of the bull, all its flesh with its head, with its legs, its inner parts, and its dung, 12 he is to carry the whole bull outside the camp to a clean place, where the ashes are poured out, and burn it with fire on the wood: it is to be burned where the ashes are poured out.
- God poured out all His love in giving us Jesus.
- Fire is the symbol of judgment. Jesus was totally judged in our place.
- We have been totally cleansed.
- The sin offering was prepared and then brought outside the camp as Christ was crucified outside the camp ... outside Jerusalem.
- Sins penalty has been executed on our perfect, sinless, innocent substitute therefore we are justly forgiven.
- This is not a suspended sentence, or a lessening or lifting of the penalty, but payment in full.
- The blood of God’s perfect holy Son answers the last demand of our holy God.
- Leviticus 17:11 For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you on the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that makes an atonement for the soul.
- John 3:16F or God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in him not perish, but have everlasting life.
- Titus 3:5 Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;
- Hebrews 13:11-13 Let us go forth to him outside the camp, bearing his reproach.
God provided the solution that removes guilt
13 And if the whole congregation of Israel sins through ignorance, and the thing is hidden from the eyes of the assembly, and they have done something against any of the commandments of the LORD concerning things which are not to be done, and are guilty; 14 When the sin that they have sinned against it is known, then the congregation is to offer a young bull for the sin and bring him before the tabernacle of the congregation. 15 The elders of the congregation are to lay their hands on the head of the bull before the LORD: and the bull is to be killed before the LORD. 16 And the priest that is anointed will bring from the bull's blood to the tabernacle of the congregation: 17 And the priest will dip his finger in some of the blood, and sprinkle it seven times before the LORD, even before the veil.
- Christ is our great High Priest.
- He has made atonement for us and we are forgiven.
- The veil separated the holy place from the holy of holies, God’s innermost chamber where the Ark of the Covenant stood with the mercy seat on it.
- Hebrews 4:14-15 Since we have a great high priest that has passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. 15 For we do not have a high priest who cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like we are, yet without sin.
- Hebrews 13:20 Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,
- Hebrews 10:10-13 By which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. 11 And every priest stands daily ministering and offering often the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: 12 But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down on the right hand of God; 13 From then on waiting until his enemies are made his footstool.
18 And he will put some of the blood on the horns of the altar which is before the LORD, that is in the tabernacle of the congregation, and pour out all the blood at the bottom of the altar of the burnt offering which is at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. 19 And he will take all its fat from him, and burn it on the altar. 20 And he will do with this bull like he did with the bull for a sin offering, he will do the same thing with this: and the priest will make atonement for them, and it shall be forgiven them. 21 And he will carry the bull outside the camp, and burn him as he burned the first bull: it is a sin offering for the congregation.
- Atonement means covering of sin, like God made the coats of skins to cover man’s nakedness in Genesis 3 after man sinned.
- Half the hospital beds today are filled with the results of the world’s most crippling disease…guilt.
- Guilt is the #1 cause of mental illness and suicide.
- People often use guilt as a tool to control others.
- What glory and freedom there is in God’s forgiveness.
- God’s forgiveness is a gift.
- We can do nothing to earn it; trying to earn it is an insult to God’s precious gift.
- Romans 5:11 And not only so, but we also joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.
- Psalm 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
22 When a ruler has sinned, and done something through ignorance against any of the commandments of the LORD his God concerning things that are not to be done, and is guilty; 23 Or if his sin, that he has sinned, comes to his knowledge; he is to bring his offering, a kid of the goats, a male without blemish: 24 And he is to lay his hand on the head of the goat and kill it in the place where they kill the burnt offering before the LORD: it is a sin offering. 25 The priest will take from the blood of the sin offering with his finger, and put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and will pour out its blood at the bottom of the altar of burnt offering.
- The blood says that someone died the death penalty in your place.
26 And he will burn all its fat on the altar, like the fat of the sacrifice of peace offerings: and the priest will make an atonement for him as concerning his sin, and it will be forgiven him. 27 And if any one of the people of the land sin through ignorance, doing something against any of the commandments of the LORD concerning things that are not to be done, and is guilty; 28 Or if his sin that he has sinned comes to his knowledge; then he is to bring his offering, a kid of the goats, a female without blemish, for his sin that he has sinned. 29 And he is to lay his hand on the head of the sin offering and kill the sin offering in the place of the burnt offering. 30 And the priest will take of its blood with his finger, and put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and pour out all its blood at the bottom of the altar. 31 And he will take away all its fat, like the fat is taken off the sacrifice of peace offerings; and the priest will burn it on the altar for a sweet fragrance to the LORD; and the priest will make atonement for him, and it will be forgiven him.
- Sin separates us from God.
- He took our sin on Himself and died for all of it.
- Our return to Him is sweet.
- There is no need for us to spend a moment away from the presence of God.
- He has provided everything we need to live close to Him.
- Isaiah 59:2 But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, so that he will not hear.
32 And if he brings a lamb for a sin offering, he is to bring a female without blemish. 33 And he is to lay his hand on the head of the sin offering and kill it for a sin offering in the place where they kill the burnt offering. 34 And the priest will take from the blood of the sin offering with his finger and put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and will pour out all its blood at the bottom of the altar: 35 And he is to take all its fat, like the fat of the lamb is taken from the sacrifice of the peace offerings; and the priest will burn it on the altar, like the offerings made by fire to the LORD: and the priest will make atonement for his sin that he has committed, and it will be forgiven him.
- Romans 8:38-39 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
SUMMARY: Leviticus 1-4
- God calls His people to Himself, to holiness
- His way is sweet, soothing, healing
- He is the rest we seek, He rests in His love for us
- He made a way for sinful man to be with Him
- He is what we are all looking for
- He has spoken and made HImself clear
- His way removes guilt
- He forgives