Posts Tagged ‘Leviticus’

Temple slaughter_area_2In Exodus, God gives Israel the law.  The law was a gift to man, to help him to realize his total inability to meet God’s standard and his obvious and ongoing need for a Savior  . . . who bleeds.  According to Paul, the “law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith.”  Galatians 3:24

The atonement provided for under the law was only intended as a temporary fix, to cover the sin. It doesn’t take sin away.  The sacrificial system sets up the foreshadowing of the lamb slain to cover the sins of men. In Leviticus, an often overlooked book of the Bible, God lays out a means by which man may atone for sin in order to be able to have restored relationship with God.  He sets up the place for fellowship (Mercy Seat) – where He will meet with man – through His representative (the High Priest).  He carefully details every piece of wood, precious stone, curtain, garment, utensil of the worship.

The starting point of the worship of God was the bronze altar where the sacrifices were made.  It was a bloody place.  At the time of the feasts, the valley behind the temple would have been flowing with blood from the many sacrifices being offered.  Shed blood was a central part of the worship and approach to God.  No one entered the presence of God without a blood covering, a sacrifice to atone for sin.

God told His people in Leviticus 17:11, “For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls, for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul.”

All this was looking forward to the cross, the shed blood of the Lamb of God, the blood that would atone for the sin of the whole world.

We’re out of space for today.  Check out our next blog for more about Easter.

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Easter is easy to locate in Leviticus . . . just follow the blood.  If you have read through the Bible, you may remember Leviticus as one of the more challenging books to get through.

In a chapter near the middle of the book, we find out the purpose of all the blood-letting and sacrifice outlined in Leviticus and other books of the law.  Leviticus 17:11 says, ‘For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul.’

The statement, “for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul” is a center piece of God’s plan for salvation.  Atonement is defined by dictionary.com as “satisfaction or reparation for a wrong or injury; amends.”  Had we been alive when sacrifices were being offered in the Tabernacle or the Temple, we would have seen blood flowing from the altar and out of the place of worship.  Blood (the sacrifice of life that it represents) and worship are intertwined and inseparable in the Bible.  For the worshiper to be able to meet God, it took a lot of spilled blood and the loss of at least one animal’s life.

Formula for meeting with God:

Prepare for worship = spill blood (give up life)

The picture of the sacrifice with the blood spilling out to atone for the sin of the one seeking to approach God was a picture of what was to come when God sent His only Son to be the perfect and final sacrifice.  .

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One of the purposes of this blog is to provide accurate information about the Bible in an easy-to-understand format.

The following are links to the posts in the  Bible Basics – Old Testament Overview series:

Bible Basics (Part 1)

Bible Basics (Part 2)

Bible Basics (Part 3)

Bible Basics (Part 4)

Bible Basics (Part 5)

Bible Basics (Part 6)

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