Leviticus 1:1-3:17; Mark 1:29-2:12;
Psalm 35:17-28; Proverbs 9:13-18
In Genesis we see man ruined.
In Exodus we see man redeemed.
In Leviticus we see man worshiping God.
~J. Vernon McGee
When you read the Bible it is normal to feel that Genesis is fascinating with the story of man's fall and the beginnings of the solution for sin. Then you get to Exodus and are introduced to Moses, who leads the Israelites out of slavery. That's a pretty cool story. Next, you turn to Leviticus. Hmmmmm. The Israelites have built the Tabernacle. God is in the Tabernacle, and uh oh, God has a long list of rules about how to worship Him. Hmmm. Details, details, details...Zzzzzz Who cares?
Well, you should care. Why? Because this is another opportunity to see Christ in all that God does. Shall we say showing us Christ in the stories of the Old Testament is God's obsession? Sure, why not. The worship designated in Leviticus is another opportunity for God to portray Christ through symbols and rituals before his birth on earth. The institution of the sacrifice, ceremony, ritual, liturgy, instructions, washings, convocations, holy days, observances, conditions, and warnings are all physical experiences that teach spiritual truths. I am sure that as the nation of Israel purposed to obey these regulations they had no idea that their obedience formed a physical picture meant to reflect a spiritual reality. Our lives do that, too. Do you think that your obedience matters to God? Leviticus shows us that it does.
The key themes of Leviticus are atonement and holiness. This book is designed to represent our sanctification in Christ. That means that as we follow Christ in obedience we become set apart for God.
- It is a voluntary free-will act. Christ's sacrifice is voluntary and offered to all.
- No carnivorous animal could be sacrificed. No animal who killed other animals could be used. Using a predatory animal would not properly reflect Christ who was a man of peace.
- The animal had to be clean and domesticated. People were to sacrifice an animal that they cared for and loved. This pictures God giving up His only Son whom He cared for and loved.
- The domesticated animal would have been a creature that obeys, unlike a wild animal. This is a picture of Christ's obedience.
- The offering was to be completely consumed by fire. Christ's life was completely consumed on earth with zeal for God and on the cross with zeal for man. Fire purifies. His death purifies our lives.
- The offering could not be done in random places. It had to be done at the door of the Tabernacle before the One True God. This would be a means of keeping the Israelites from falling into idolatry, which they were prone to. Christ's death keeps us in front of the One True God. He is the doorway to salvation and eternity.
- Hands were to be laid on the animal as it was sacrificed. This represents conferring sin upon the animal. Christ is who we confer our sins to. He paid the price for our debt.
- The poor were not exempt from the sacrifice. They were allowed to bring birds. Notice that Jesus' parents offered birds when they worshiped. Jesus came from poverty.
This is a beautiful picture of what Christ has done for you and me. His death makes us holy before a Holy God. Have you accepted Christ's sacrifice in your life? Do you worship as one who has been atoned for?
In today's reading you may have noticed that Jesus heals a man with leprosy and then tells the man to follow the laws of Moses, go be examined by a priest, and take an offering as regulated for those who have been healed of leprosy. Jesus is talking about rules that we will be studying in Leviticus, folks! See, this matters.
Vs. 22-23 "O Lord, you know all about this. Do not remain silent. Don't abandon me now, O Lord. Wake up! Rise to my defense! Take up my case, my God and my Lord." Have ever felt like praying this?
Folly is a woman, just like wisdom is a woman. Folly is brash and loud, rather than discreet and appropriate. She is ignorant and doesn't even know it. She sleeps with random men. She is sexually active and liberated. She entices men who are unaware and tries to control them with her sexuality. She likes secrets. If you had to describe yourself, are you Wisdom or Folly?
What did you see today?
What did you see today?