The Lord appeared in the cloud on the mercy seat
1 And the LORD spoke to Moses after the death of Aaron’s two sons, when they offered before the LORD, and died; 2 And the LORD said to Moses, Tell your brother Aaron your that he is not to come at all times into the holy place inside the veil before the mercy seat which is on the ark; so that he not die: for I will appear in the cloud on the mercy seat.
- God’s rules protect us when we obey them.
- Nadab and Abihu, Aaron’s sons, died for entering in a wrong way into God’s holy presence.
- To protect the people from this happening again, God set some boundaries for them. In 586 BC Ezekiel saw and described the glory of God.
- Ezekiel 1:26 And above the expanse that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, like a sapphire stone: and on the throne was the likeness of a man above upon it. 27 And I saw as the color of amber, like the appearance of fire around inside it; from his loins upward and from his loins downward I saw the appearance of fire, and it had brightness round about. 28 Like the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain was the appearance of the brightness around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD.
3 This is how Aaron is to enter the holy place: with a young bull for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering. 4 He will put on the holy linen coat, he will have the linen breeches on his flesh and will be girded with a linen sash, and he will be clothed with the linen turban; these are holy garments. He is to wash his flesh in water and then put them on. 5 And he is to take from the congregation of the children of Israel two kids of the goats for a sin offering, and one ram for a burnt offering. 6 And Aaron will offer his bull of the sin offering, which is for himself, and make an atonement for himself and for his house.
- In Genesis 3:21 God made coats of skins to cover the nakedness of man and woman. In the future He will dress us in holy garments.
- Revelation 19:7-8 Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his wife has made herself ready. 8 And to her was granted that she be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.
7 He is to take the two goats and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. 8 And Aaron will cast lots on the two goats; one lot for the LORD, and the other lot for the scapegoat. 9 And Aaron is to bring the goat on which the LORD'S lot fell and offer him for a sin offering. 10 But the goat on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat, will be presented alive before the LORD to make an atonement with him, and to release for a scapegoat into the wilderness. 11 Aaron is to bring the bull of the sin offering which is for himself, and make an atonement for himself and for his house, and will kill the bull of the sin offering which is for himself: 12 He is to take a fire pan full of burning coals of fire from off the altar before the LORD, and his hands full of sweet incense beaten small, and bring it inside the veil: 13 He is to put the incense on the fire before the LORD so that the cloud of the incense may cover the mercy seat that is on the testimony, so that he not die.
- The word ‘atonement’ means to cancel.
- God doesn’t want any to die.
- He let His Son die in our place to prevent it.
- The two goats illustrated that Christ paid for our sins and the taking of our sins away from us.
- 2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any perish, but that all come to repentance.
14 He is to take of the blood of the bull and sprinkle it with his finger on the east side of the mercy seat; and he will sprinkle some of the blood with his finger seven times before the mercy seat. 15 Then he will kill the goat of the sin offering that is for the people, bring its blood inside the veil, and do the same with that blood that he did with the blood of the bull: sprinkle it on the mercy seat, and before the mercy seat: 16 And he will make an atonement for the holy place because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions in all their sins: and he will do this for the tabernacle of the congregation that stays among them in the midst of their uncleanness.
- God’s mercy is everlasting.
- He covered and cancelled our uncleanness.
- Our holy God did not leave the people because of their uncleanness.
- He made a way to stay with them.
- These ceremonies all portray the cleansing of our hearts so that God can live inside us.
- Ephesians 3:17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; 19 And to know the love of Christ, which passes knowledge, that you might be filled with all the fullness of God.
- Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock: if any man hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and feast with him, and he with me. 21 To him that overcomes I will grant to sit with me on my throne, even as I also overcame and am set down with my Father in his throne.
- Psalm 100:5 the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endures to all generations.
17 No man is to be in the tabernacle of the congregation when he goes in to make an atonement in the holy place, until he comes out, and has made an atonement for himself, for his household, and for all the congregation of Israel. 18 And he will go out to the altar that is before the LORD, and make an atonement for it; and will take from the blood of the bull, and the blood of the goat, and put it on the horns of the altar round about. 19 And he will sprinkle some of the blood on it with his finger seven times, and cleanse it and purify it from the uncleanness of the children of Israel.
- This ceremony happened once each year.
- All the people waited outside to see if the high priest would live and the people be accepted before God or if he would be struck down before God.
- God has made us complete in Christ.
- Seven is the number that represents completeness in scripture.
- Colossians 2:10 you are complete in him, who is the head of all principality and power.
20 And when he has made an end of reconciling the holy place, the tabernacle of the congregation and the altar, he will bring the live goat: 21 And Aaron will lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, all their transgressions in all their sins, putting them on the head of the goat, and will send him away by the hand of a chosen man into the wilderness:
- God requires we acknowledge when we are wrong.
- He has taken our sins as from as the East is from the West.
- I John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
- Psalm 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
22 And the goat will bear on him all their iniquities unto a land separate: and he will release the goat in the wilderness. 23 And Aaron will come into the tabernacle of the congregation, take off the linen garments that he put on when he went into the holy place, and leave them there: 24 And he will wash his flesh with water in the holy place, put on his garments, come out and offer his burnt offering and the burnt offering of the people, and make an atonement for himself and for the people. 25 He is to burn the fat of the sin offering on the altar. 26 He that released the goat for the scapegoat will wash his clothes, bathe his flesh in water, and afterward come into the camp. 27 And the bull for the sin offering and the goat for the sin offering, whose blood was brought in to make atonement in the holy place, someone will one carry outside the camp; and they will burn their skins in the fire, their flesh, and their dung. 28 And he that burns them will wash his clothes, bathe his flesh in water, and afterward he will come into the camp.
- These things picture how thoroughly God has cleansed us.
- Colossians 2:14 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;
29 And this will be a statute to you forever, that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, you are to afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether it is one of your own country, or a foreigner that stays among you: 30 For on that day the priest will make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that you may be clean from all your sins before the LORD.
- This was the only day of the year they were to ‘afflict their souls.’
- They were to feel remorse and sorrow for sin and their unrighteousness.
- All God’s other feasts and ceremonies were for rejoicing and praising.
- It is hard for proud man to humble himself and obey, to do His will and not ours requires humbling ourselves.
31 It will be a sabbath of rest to you and you are to afflict your souls by a statute forever. 32 And the priest that he will anoint and consecrate to minister in the priest's office in his father's place, will make the atonement, and will put on the linen clothes, the holy garments: 33 He will make an atonement for the holy sanctuary; he will make an atonement for the tabernacle of the congregation and for the altar: and he will make an atonement for the priests and for all the people of the congregation. 34 This will be an everlasting statute for you, to make an atonement for the children of Israel for all their sins once a year. And he did as the LORD commanded Moses.
- Picture the holy God of Ezekiel 1:26, becoming man to die for sin.
- Picture the Holy Father sending His Son to die in our place. That’s what all this symbolizes.
1 And the LORD spoke to Moses saying, 2 Speak to Aaron and his sons, to all the children of Israel and say to them; This is what the LORD has commanded saying, 3 Any man of the house of Israel that kills an ox, lamb, or goat in the camp, or that kills it outside of the camp, 4 and does not bring it to the door of the tabernacle of the congregation to offer an offering to the LORD before the tabernacle of the LORD; blood will be imputed to that man; he has shed blood; and that man will be cut off from his people: 5 To the end that the children of Israel may bring their sacrifices that they offer in the open field, that they may bring them to the LORD, to the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, to the priest, and offer them for peace offerings to the LORD.
- All the animals that Israel ate were to be brought to the priest at the tabernacle to be slaughtered.
- By this, God turned the slaughtering of animals into an act of worship.
- This was a roadblock against idolatry, sacrificing to evil.
- Blood is the sacred symbol of God’s love to be poured out for the world because He gave His life for us.
- God is the source of our life, our peace, and our food.
- John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him not perish, but have everlasting life.
- 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,
- John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you: not as the world gives, I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, do not let it be afraid.
6 And the priest will sprinkle the blood on the altar of the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation and burn the fat for a sweet fragrance to the LORD. 7 And they will no longer offer their sacrifices to devils, after whom they have gone whoring. This will be a statute to them forever throughout their generations. 8 You are to say to them, Any man of the house of Israel, or of the foreigners who stay among you that offers a burnt offering or sacrifice, 9 and does not bring it to the door of the tabernacle of the congregation to offer it to the LORD, that man will be cut off from his people.
- Devils are behind all false worship.
- The word ‘devils’ is seir, shedirim, these were the satre demons that ruled the phallic cult.
- “Under whose eyes they fornicate” is the accurate translation for ‘after whom they have gone a whoring’.
- Orgies were practiced as worship of false gods in the high places.
- This was wrong and led the people to eternal death.
- God forbad it.
- Right worship is sweet to God.
- When a person slaughtered an animal for food it was to be done at the tabernacle and the blood sprinkled on the altar in honor of God’s love to be poured out for man in the sacrifice of His Son for our sin.
- God did not compromise where someone was leading others to eternal death.
- 1Timothy 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;
- Psalm 96:5 For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens.
- Romans 11:36 For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory forever. Amen.
- John 14:6 Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes to the Father, except by me.
God set His face against those who set their faces against Him
10 And any man of the house of Israel or of the foreigners that stay among you that eats any kind of blood, I will set my face against that soul that eats blood, and will cut him off from his people. 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: it is the blood that makes an atonement for the soul. 12 Therefore I said to the children of Israel, No soul among you is to eat blood, nor may any foreigner that stays among you eat blood. 13 And any man of the children of Israel or of the foreigners that stay among you who hunts and catches any animal or bird that may be eaten, he will pour out its blood and cover it with dust. 14 For it is the life of all flesh; its blood is its life: therefore I said to the children of Israel, You will not eat the blood of any flesh: for the life of all flesh is its blood: whoever eats it will be cut off.
- God’s rules teach great truths.
- God made a way for all to obey.
- Any who couldn’t make it to door of the tabernacle could pour the blood on the ground and cover it with earth.
- Hebrews 9:22 And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.
15 And every soul that eats what has died of itself/a carcass, or what was torn by animals, whether it is one of your own country or a foreigner, he will wash his clothes, bathe himself in water, and be unclean until evening: then he will be clean. 16 But if he does not wash or bathe his flesh; then he will bear his iniquity.
- If a man found a fresh carcass of good meat or a torn carcass of good meat it was not to be eaten.
- If a person did eat it, they were to wash themselves and were considered unclean until evening.
- God made it easy for mankind to return to Him.
- If we choose not to return through the specified means, then we bear our iniquity.
- Jesus fulfilled all this law for us perfectly and when we trust Him instead of our own works, His perfect life is credited to our account.
- John 15:3 Now you are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.
- 1 Peter 1:18-19 you were not redeemed with corruptible things like silver and gold from your vain way of life received by tradition from your fathers, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, as a lamb without blemish and without spot:
- John 3:36 He that believes on the Son has everlasting life: and he that does not believe the Son will not see life; but the wrath of God abides on him.
1 The LORD spoke to Moses saying, 2 Speak to the children of Israel and say to them, I am the LORD your God. 3 You are not to do what is done in the land of Egypt where you lived: you are not to do what is done in the land of Canaan where I am bringing you; you are not to do their deeds; you are not to walk in their statutes. 4 You will do my judgments and keep my ordinances, to walk in them: I am the LORD your God. 5 For this reason you are to keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man does them, he will live in them: I am the LORD.
- I AM THE LORD. There are no higher credentials, anywhere, anytime, anyplace.
- He has all the power; He controls all things in the universe.
- The title ‘LORD’ here means self-existent.
- We all need food, air, water, and rest.
- God needs nothing to sustain Him.
- The title ‘Lord (non capital letters)’ means ‘controller’ because He does control all things.
- "When you can make a universe, then you can make the rules.’ (Dr. J. Vernon McGee).
- God’s ordinances lead man to the best life that could possibly be for now and eternity. All other things are from evil and lead to death.
- Psalm 96:5 For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens.
God forbids all forms of incest
6 None of you will approach anyone that is a close relative to him, to uncover their nakedness: I am the LORD. 7 You will not uncover the nakedness of your father, or the nakedness of your mother: she is your mother; you will not uncover her nakedness. 8 You are not to uncover the nakedness of your father's wife: it is your father's nakedness. 9 You will not uncover the nakedness of your sister, the daughter of your father, or daughter of your mother, whether she is born at home, or born abroad. 10 You will not uncover the nakedness of your son's daughter, or of your daughter's daughter because their nakedness is your own nakedness. 11 You are not to uncover the nakedness of your father's wife's daughter, begotten by your father: she is your sister. 12 You will not uncover the nakedness of your father's sister: she is your father's close relative. 13 You will not uncover the nakedness of your mother's sister: for she is your mother's close relative.
- ‘Uncovering their nakedness’ with the intent of mating is what is being spoken of.
- Bathing children or ill people is not in view here as will become clear.
- All the following practices are inspired by evil.
- God cuts off evil so that it does not cut us off from life.
14 You will not uncover the nakedness of your father's brother, you will not approach his wife: she is your aunt. 15 You will not uncover the nakedness of your daughter in law: she is your son's wife; you will not uncover her nakedness. 16 You will not uncover the nakedness of your brother's wife: it is your brother's nakedness. 17 You will not uncover the nakedness of a woman and her daughter, neither will you take her son's daughter, or her daughter's daughter, to uncover her nakedness; for they are her close relative: it is wickedness.
- Wickedness comes from evil, from Satan and the others who are disobedient to their Maker.
- Evil on earth began with the lie of the serpent to Eve in Eden.
- Forces of evil seduce people into believing that their suggestion will satisfy.
- It is a lie bringing trouble in the life and judgment from God.
- Genesis 4:7 If you do well, will you not be accepted? And if you do not do well, sin lies at the door. His desire is toward you, and you will rule over him.
18 Neither will you take a wife and her sister while she is alive, to be a rival, to uncover her nakedness. 19 Also you will not approach to a woman to uncover her nakedness, as long as she is put apart for her uncleanness/menstrual period. 20 Moreover you will not lie carnally with your neighbor's wife, to defile yourself with her.
- Marriage is one of the illustrations of God’s relationship with mankind.
- It is to be honored and not abused.
- God is personal, intimate, and faithful to us.
- A Christian medical scientist at the University of Southern California in the 1970’s proved from a purely physiological basis that there are physically matched pairs of men and women on earth today.
- What God provided for Adam, ‘bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh,’ He provided for the rest of the human race.
- We need to wait on God for the mate that He has provided.
- That’s the relationship that will satisfy.
- The reason that God forbids these other relationships is that they don’t satisfy. God wants us to be happy.
- Genesis 2:21-24 And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh over it; 22 And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, he made a woman, and brought her unto the man. 23 And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she will be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. 24 Therefore will a man leave his father and his mother, and will cleave unto his wife: and they will be one flesh.
- Jeremiah 3:14 Turn, O backsliding children, says the LORD; for I am married unto you.
21 And you will not let any of your seed/children pass through the fire to Molech, neither will you profane the name of your God: I am the LORD. 22 You will not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination. 23 Neither will you lie with any beast to defile yourself with them: neither will any woman stand before a beast to lie down with it: it is a shameful mixing.
- God forbids child-sacrifice. It’s murder.
- ‘Passing through the fire’ was a hideous heathen practice where parents burned their children as sacrifice to an idol while participating in orgies to the sound of their screams.
- And the parents called this worship.
- No wonder God commanded Joshua and the Israelites to destroy them completely.
God dispossessed and destroyed nations for these practices
24 Do not defile yourselves by any of these things: for in all these the nations are defiled which I cast out before you: 25 And the land is defiled by this so I am visiting its evil upon it, and the land itself vomits out her inhabitants. 26 This is the reason you are to keep my statutes and my judgments, and not commit any of these abominations; anyone of your own nation or any foreigner that stays among you: 27 (For the men of the land that were before you have done all these abominations, and the land is defiled/foul). 28 So that the land will not vomit you out also, when you defile it, as it vomited out the nations that were before you. 29 For whoever commits any of these abominations, even the souls that commit them will be cut off from their people. 30 Therefore you are to keep my ordinance, so that you do not commit any one of these abominable customs, which were committed before you, and not defile yourselves in them: I am the LORD your God.
- God made us and He can destroy us.
- He places the choice of life and death before us just like He did Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden.
- Seven times in this chapter God says to us, I am the Lord your God.
- He is ours.
- All the things we love come from Him, therefore He is better than these things.
- And He loves us with an everlasting love.
- He loves us with an infinite love.
- When we receive that love we do not need anything less or perverse.
- Deuteronomy 23:14 For the LORD your God walks in the midst of your camp, to deliver you, and to give up your enemies before you; therefore will your camp be holy: that he see no unclean thing in you, and turn away from you.
- Jeremiah 31:3 The LORD has appeared of old to me, saying, Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love.
SUMMARY: Leviticus 16-18
- He appeared in the cloud on the mercy seat
- His face is against those who set their faces against Him
- He is against all forms of incest
- He dispossesses and destroys nations that practice such evil