Today’s Reading: Leviticus 1:1-3:17 (additional reading Psalm 35:17-28 and Proverbs 9:13-18)
Key Verse: ‘If the offering is a burnt offering from the herd, you are to offer a male without defect. You must present it at the entrance to the tent of meeting so that it will be acceptable to the Lord.” Leviticus 1:3
We are now entering the book of Leviticus. And when I say to you that it’s a great book and that’s it is going to be an exciting study you may be like… “Leviticus? Is it not full of ritual and sacrifices, that have not been performed for nearly 2000 years. Does it not goes into great detail describing a priesthood that no longer exists and feasts and Holidays that are no longer observed.”
Among Christians, I think Leviticus may be one of our LEAST studied book of the Bible. In fact, I’ve known many a person to say, “This year I’m going to read through the entire Bible”. They sail through most of Genesis. They get slowed down in Exodus, and by Leviticus, their Bible is back on the shelf collecting dust. But for those of you who have joined me on this journey through the Old Testament, please don’t give up!
Dr Smith wrote in regards to Leviticus:”The prejudice against it notwithstanding, Leviticus is a Christian book. The Bible of Jesus contained this book. More than 40 New Testament references to Leviticus have been identified. What appears on the surface to be a barren wasteland proves to be a gold mine to those with the patience to plunge its depths.“
My prayer and goal are that over the next days we will start to plunge these depths together.
As we reflect on the Mosaic Sacrificial system, we will see many familiar threads and applications to our own worship towards God today. We are shown that the problem of sin must be dealt with before we can be restored in fellowship with the One True and Holy God. The words offering and sacrifice are used over 90 times in this book, and the first seven chapters deal with the seven sacrifices that God established.
We can learn from some essential lessons of the fundamental principles of the sacrifices to help our worship today:
Firstly, A worshipper could never come into the presence of God empty-handed, he always had to bring an offering to the Lord. Today we have been accredited with Jesus’ righteousness so that we can approach God with boldness, and present our worship to Him.
The writer of Hebrews reminds us “Therefore since we are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, let us be thankful, and so worship God acceptably with reverence and awe,” Hebrews 12:28
The Hebrew word translated “offering” means a thing “literally brought near.” This word provides a clue to the significance of the sacrificial system. The sacrifices provided the means by which a worshipper could come into the presence of God. You see, here we don’t have just a list of rules, but a picture of God’s mercy. He makes a way so that even when his people messed up, we may again draw near to Him.
- Have you been guilty of skipping over Leviticus in the past?
- What does it mean to you to worship God with reverence and awe?
- How do you feel to know that God’s make you a way to return even when you mess up?
Father, Thank You that You are a merciful God, full of compassion and love. Sorry for those times we skip over parts of your Word, thinking they are not relevant to our lives, when they, in fact, teach us more of your character, love and grace towards people. Help us to live in such a way that our whole lives worship You with reverence and awe. In Jesus’ name, Amen