As we begin to get into the book of Leviticus, there are many who wish they could avoid it altogether (along with Numbers). Yet there is a lot for us to learn from these important books…
Probably the greatest thing that we learn from the book of Leviticus is the consequences of sin. I have heard people say over the years that it is tough to read because it is such a bloody book (which it is). The reality is that sin is bloody. This is similar those who have chosen not to see “The Passion” for the same reason.
In the Old Testament, you didn’t have the choice to leave the sacrifice with the priests. You couldn’t walk away and allow them to deal with the consequences of sin. You had to see it yourself.
We need to both understand the consequences of sin, and the fact that it is not just the consequences of our sins, but of “my” sin. In the Spurgeon Study Bible, it is pointed out that the offerings required the person bringing them to lay their hands upon the blemished animal. The guilty person was, in a sense, transferring their sin to the animal. This was to prepare us for Jesus, who would take our sins on His unblemished body on the cross. Yet His sacrifice on the cross is only relevant if we acknowledge that it is “my” sin that He paid for.
As Spurgeon writes, “If the most perfect animal had gone away from the altar, alive, it would have effected nothing whatsever by way of atonement. It must be unblemished in order to be offered at all, but still its perfection did not make it a sacrifice until it was killed.”
If the most perfect animal had gone away from the altar, alive, it would have effected nothing whatsever by way of atonement. It must be unblemished in order to be offered at all, but still its perfection did not make it a sacrifice until it was killed.”Spurgeon Study Bible, Holman Bible Publishers (Nashville, TN), p. 130
The reality is that we sin, and that it is by Jesus’ perfect life, sacrificial death, and glorious resurrection that we are free from the penalty of sin.
The price paid was great, and acknowledging that should make it harder to willingly sin!
It should give us a greater devotion to the One who sacrificed everything for us.