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Leviticus – The Offering

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OTI-03

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The book of Leviticus has been rightly called ‘the most NT of all the OT books. It reveals in an incredible way the work of Christ on the Cross. Divine Inspiration is more clearly stated in Leviticus than in any other book. Twenty chapters start with ‘and the Lord said…’ as well as other places totals  38 times the ‘Lord spoke…’. The dual theme of ATONEMENT [48x] kaphar in Hebrew and HOLINESS [100x] qodesh, qadesh, qadosh in Hebrew, set the stage for this incomparable book. The atonement of the OT sacrifices was a kaphar “covering”, they were not removing sin [Hebrews. 10:4]. Only the Coming One could offer a perfect sacrifice for sin [Hebrews. 9:15]. The holiness of Leviticus is basically “separateness”.  When SEPARATENESS is referring to God it implies that He is unique and separate from all that is earthly and wrong. A simple definition[1] of holy comes from looking at why certain things are called holy. The Bible is called ‘HOLY BIBLE’, he land of Israel is called the ‘HOLY LAND’ and the city of Jerusalem is called the ‘HOLY CITY’. Why? There is a quality about all three which they share in common. THEY ALL BELONG TO GOD. The Bible is God’s book; Israel is God’s land; Jerusalem is God’s city- they are God’s property! That is why they are HOLY; they belong to God! When referring to man kaphar speaks of a life of purity and obedience.

BOOK OUTLINE:

Leviticus 1-17 Leviticus 18-27
The Ground of Fellowship The Walk of Fellowship
Sacrifice Separation
Divine Worship Daily Living
Tabernacle events Personal conduct
The way to God The Walk with God
Positional Sanctification Practical sanctification
Purification Punishment
Cleansing Clean living
Work of Son for us Work of Spirit within us
What God is and does What we should become and do
Standing State
Privileges Practices
Foundation of Fellowship Conditions for Fellowship

In every offering there were three components:

1.    The Offering: and Christ was our offering Hebrews 10:10 By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once

[for all]

. (KJV)

2.    The Priest: and Christ was our Great High Priest in Hebrews 4:14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast

[our]

profession. (KJV)

3.    The Offerer: and Christ offered Himself in Titus 2:14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. (KJV) 

As a sacrifice was made, there were three distinct aspects that had to be accomplished:

1.    IDENTIFICATION: the offerer pressed his hands on the sacrifice to identify himself with it. This is parallel to personal faith in the substitutionary death of Christ. Baptism is a picture of a believers identification with the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. [Rom. 6.3-11]

2.    SUBSTITUTION: the innocent animal bore the sins of another, a picture of the perfect Lamb, Christ Jesus. [Rom. 5:8; II C 5:21; I Pet 2.24, 3.18].

3.    PROPITIATION: the blood was a visible evidence that a life had been offered. It is only the blood of Jesus that can satisfy the righteous wrath of a Holy God. [Lev. 17.11; Rom. 3.25; Heb. 9.22]. 

What does it mean to be holy? 

Charles Hodge explains: This is a general term for the moral excellence of God….  Holiness, on the one hand, implies entire freedom from moral evil and, on the other, absolute moral perfection.  Freedom from impurity is the primary idea of the word.  To sanctify is to cleanse; to be holy is to be clean.  Infinite purity, even more than infinite knowledge or infinite power, is the object of reverence[2]

Simply put, God is without sin.  He doesn’t conform to some holy standard — He is the standard.  He never does anything wrong.  There are no degrees to His holiness, for He is perfectly holy.

Between God and us is a gulf separating holiness from unholiness.  He is holy; we are unholy.  As a result, we will be shaken to the roots of our being when we see ourselves in comparison to His holiness.  That’s a frightening thought since holiness is the standard for existing in His presence.  It’s why God “did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, reserved for judgment (2 Peter 2:4).  Similarly, the unrepentant sinner is sent “into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels” (Matthew. 25:41). 

  1. Remember that holiness[3] was God’s purpose for all his people when he planned their salvation: Ephesians 1:4 4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: (KJV)
  2. Remember that holiness was Christ’s purpose for all of us when he died for us:Ephesians 5:25-26  Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her 26 to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, (NIV)
  3. Remember that it was for holiness that we were raised to life in Christ: Ephesians 2:10 10 For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. (NIV)
  4. Remember that the gospel that calls us to Christ summons us also to holiness:Titus 2:11-12  For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. 12 It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, (NIV) Ephesians 4:21-24 21 Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. 22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds; 24 and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness. (NIV)
  5. Remember that holiness, which is another name for the life of deliverance from sin, is itself a part of the salvation that Jesus brings us: Matthew 1:21 21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. (KJV)
  6. Remember that “… without holiness no one will see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14 NIV), not because a Christian’s final acceptance has to be earned by holy living, but because, just as only through a sound eye can one ever see a view, so only through a pure heart can one ever see God (we have that on Jesus’ authority)Hebrews 12:14  Make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. (NIV)
  7. Remember, too, that holiness makes for the happiness of fellowship with God, which the unholy will miss. Psalm 15:1-2  LORD, who may dwell in your sanctuary? Who may live on your holy hill? 2  He whose walk is blameless and who does what is righteous, who speaks the truth from his heart (NIV)
  8. Remember also that holiness is the precondition of usefulness to God: 2 Timothy 2:21 21 If a man therefore purge himself from these, he shall be a vessel unto honor, sanctified, and meet for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work. (KJV)
  9. Finally, remember that holiness is in any case the only way of life that is natural and fulfilling  to anyone who is born again… Hebrews 12:7-8 7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not? 8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons. (KJV) As the great preacher of over a century and a half ago prayed, “Lord, make me as holy as it is possible for a saved sinner to be.” Can we pray that this evening?

BOOK APPLICATION:

Because we are a Kingdom of Priests 1 Peter 2:9 But you [are] a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; (NKJV) in the NT Church where Christ is our High Priest [Hebrews 8:1; Revelation 1:6] we are to be offering to God:

1.    OUR LIFE as a SACRIFICE [Romans. 12:1; 15:16]

2.    OUR DEVOTION as a BURNT OFFERING [Mark 12:33]

3.    OUR SERVICE poured out as a DRINK OFFERING [II Tim. 4:6; Phil. 2:7]

4.    OUR DEEDS as continual SPIRITUAL SACRIFICES [I Peter 2:5; Hebrews 13:16]

5.    OUR PRAYERS as a sweet smelling INCENSE OFFERING [Revelation 8:3-4;Psalm 141:2]

6.    OUR WORSHIP as a heaven sent PRAISE OFFERING [Hebrews 13:15

The Offerings of Leviticus

Name of  Offering References Purpose Description Portions Significance
1.        Burnt 1.3-17; 6.8-13 to signify complete dedication to God by wealth: bullock, male sheep or goat, pigeons God: all burnt Priest: skin Offerer: nothing Christ was the perfect sacrifice we are to follow SUBMISSION
2.        Meal [Cereal] 2.1-16; 6.14-18; 7.12-13. with burnt to signify thanks flour; cakes; roasted heads of grain God: portion burnt Priest:remainder eaten Offerer: nothing Christ the sinless man
3.        Peace 3.1-17; 7.11-21; 28-34 Thanks; Votive; freewill By wealth: male or female of flock, herd or goats; some imperfect God: fat burnt Priest: breast/thigh Offerer: rest Christ our perfect Peace ACCESS
4.        Sin 4:1 – 5:13; 6:24-30 For sins committed without intent, when no restitution is possible By rank: from bullock to flour God: fat / all Priest: some Offerer: nothing Christ our sin bearer
5.        Trespass 5:14-6:7 For sins committed without intent, when no restitution is possible A ram plus 1/5 if restitution God: fat Priest: remainder Offerer: nothing Christ bore sin’s damages

The Feasts of God

Name Scripture Time Purpose Significance
Passover E 12; L 23; N 28; D 16 1/14 Passover Deliverence Substitutionary Death
Unleavened Bread E 12-13; L 23; N 28; D 16 1/15-22 Exodus Trial Sinless Christ /LS/Sanct
First Fruits L 23 Day after Sab of Passover Dedicate barley 1st Fruit Res Christ/Security
Pentecost L 23; N 28; D 16 Day 50 after 1st F Dedicate barley 1st Fruit Day of Pentecost/HS
Trumpets L 23; N 10, 29 7/1 Begin Sab month 2nd Coming
Atonement L 16; 23; Num. 29 7/10 Annual atoning people Cross
Booths L 23; N 29; D 16 7/15-23 Deliverance/Harvest Millennial

[1] Haddon Robinson, Biblical Preaching, p. 140.

[2]  (Systematic Theology, abridged ed. [Grand Rapids:  Baker, 1988], pp. 150-51).

[3] J.I. Packer, Keep in Step, pp118-120.

 
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