Leviticus is 27 chapters of fun.
Well, it is 27 chapters.
It is one of those chapters in the Bible that rarely get used in a preaching series… other than a statement that simply reminds us how easy our access to God is. I considered asking one of my various friends who have been to seminary and actually have Minister in their title to give me a break the next couple days. Perhaps they could share some amazing insight on the takeaways from Leviticus, but that would be cheating myself of the opportunity to talk about atonement and discharges.
So… I charge into the 3rd book of the Old Testament. Let’s see where it goes:
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The first two chapter of Leviticus deal with the type of offerings that the people would bring to the presence of God. Moses is to relay these details to the priests and to the people for them to follow. The altar sure was a bloody place. I guess that is what we should remember when we think about the altar that was the cross. It was a sacrifice that was definite.
Notice that offerings given during peace time was still very visible and sure. If the details are followed, than the offering is a pleasing aroma to the Lord. I guess that there are times that my offering is for sure less than pleasing to God, because I don’t present it without blemish and follow through… if my concentration is on anything other than him, then the offering is just as dead as these in the wilderness.
Unintentional sins still are sin. They still require judgement which means that payment is required.
The priests are to keep the fire burning all night until the morning. Then they should take ashes outside the camp to a clean place. The tent is to be kept holy, but the camp is also to be kept holy. Not sure if this is the meaning or not, but in our lives we have sins that we deal with and God forgives and even after he has forgiven us, we leave the ashes laying around us when we should remove them totally from our sight.
There were portions of the sacrifice that could be eaten by the priests. This was ordained and allowed.
Aaron’s offerings are accepted.
However, Nadab and Abihu offered unauthorized fire. The Lord consumed them because of their disobedience.
This is where levi standards are begun. No wine or strong drink. Touch nothing unclean.
Clean vs unclean animals are determined.
The main takeaway of the entire book is also in this chapter. Be holy because I am holy.
Laws about purification after childbirth.
How to deal with leprosy. Interestingly, we read in Matthew 8 this evening as a family how Jesus healed the leper and told the man to go present himself to the Priest (as written here in 12) The man was not to tell anyone about how it happened.
The chapter says that if you had leprosy, you were to announce your disease by yelling out while you walked around “UNCLEAN! UNCLEAN!” He was to separate himself from all people and live alone outside the camp.
Amazing to think about this man in Matthew how all the sudden he was clean. He wasn’t to tell anyone, but present himself to the priests. I imagine he wasn’t walking silently to the temple to present himself to the priests… He probably was yelling “I’M CLEAN! I’M CLEAN!”
He didn’t wait until the priest to come outside the camp… He went to the priest… and even in Jesus’ day the offering was still done as proof of his cleansing and healing.