Posts Tagged ‘Atonement’


Leviticus 4:2-4,13,22,27,35 “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel. This is how you are to deal with those who sin unintentionally by doing anything that violates one of the Lord’s commands. “If the high priest sins, bringing guilt upon the entire community, he must give a sin offering for the sin he has committed. He must present to the Lord a young bull with no defects. He must bring the bull to the Lord at the entrance of the Tabernacle, lay his hand on the bull’s head, and slaughter it before the Lord… “If the entire Israelite community sins by violating one of the Lord’s commands, but the people don’t realize it, they are still guilty… “If one of Israel’s leaders sins by violating one of the commands of the Lord his God but doesn’t realize it, he is still guilty… “If any of the common people sin by violating one of the Lord’s commands, but they don’t realize it, they are still guilty… Then he must remove all the sheep’s fat, just as he does with the fat of a sheep presented as a peace offering. He will burn the fat on the altar on top of the special gifts presented to the Lord. Through this process, the priest will purify the people from their sin, making them right with the Lord, and they will be forgiven.

Another record of the seemingly senseless brutality of the Israelites is on display as God instructs them to make atonement for their unintentional sins by sacrificing animals.

We know today there is no blood shed for sins but why did God insist on such a gory sacrifice and is it relevant today? (more…)

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Leviticus 16:2-5,20-22,29-32 (ESV) and the LORD said to Moses, “Tell Aaron your brother not to come at any time into the Holy Place inside the veil, before the mercy seat that is on the ark, so that he may not die. For I will appear in the cloud over the mercy seat. But in this way Aaron shall come into the Holy Place: with a bull from the herd for a sin offering and a ram for a burnt offering. He shall put on the holy linen coat and shall have the linen undergarment on his body, and he shall tie the linen sash around his waist, and wear the linen turban; these are the holy garments. He shall bathe his body in water and then put them on. And he shall take from the congregation of the people of Israel two male goats for a sin offering, and one ram for a burnt offering… “And when he has made an end of atoning for the Holy Place and the tent of meeting and the altar, he shall present the live goat. And Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over it all the iniquities of the people of Israel, and all their transgressions, all their sins. And he shall put them on the head of the goat and send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a man who is in readiness. The goat shall bear all their iniquities on itself to a remote area, and he shall let the goat go free in the wilderness… “And it shall be a statute to you forever that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, you shall afflict yourselves and shall do no work, either the native or the stranger who sojourns among you. For on this day shall atonement be made for you to cleanse you. You shall be clean before the LORD from all your sins. It is a Sabbath of solemn rest to you, and you shall afflict yourselves; it is a statute forever. And the priest who is anointed and consecrated as priest in his father’s place shall make atonement, wearing the holy linen garments.

We arrive at an annual tradition that served to atone for the sins of God’s chosen ones and this was a carnival of forgiveness of sins for an entire nation at the same time.

The question that comes to mind is why do we not mark it if we are followers of this same God and have we missed God’s clear instructions to us?

The two sons of Aaron who died before this event are the same ones mentioned in Leviticus 10 and God’s caution to Aaron was for his own safety for he bore in himself sins that would cause his death when he entered the veil or the Holy of Holies.

On the day of Atonement, the high priest was required to wash himself and wear the holy garments of linen and then to offer the sacrifice of the ram and two goats procured from the ones who were being atoned for. Would that suffice to wipe out our sins?

Hebrews 10:1,3 (ESV) For since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices that are continually offered every year, make perfect those who draw near. But in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year.

One goat was sacrificed while the other carried the sins of the entire nation of Israel, which were confessed by the high priest before God, and it was then sent away into the wilderness.

When we look at our lives today, we seem to be living in sin or carrying the burden of sins and don’t we wish that our sins could be atoned for and we could have a clean slip of life without the burden of our guilt on us?

The whole ritual of sacrificing animals is gruesome and traumatic to endure but wouldn’t it be better them than us going through it and thereby we get to live without the scarring of sin in our lives?

In Jesus, we have the High Priest whom God required to go into the Holy of Holies for us because He is God’s only son and is the only person who can enter the veil because He is sinless.

His garments were linen and were seamless as was required of the High Priest and also recorded in John 19:23-24 (ESV) When the soldiers had crucified Jesus, they took his garments and divided them into four parts, one part for each soldier; also his tunic. But the tunic was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom, so they said to one another, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots for it to see whose it shall be.” This was to fulfill the Scripture which says, “They divided my garments among them, and for my clothing they cast lots.” So the soldiers did these things.

He is the first goat that was sacrificed and His blood is upon the mercy seat and the altar and it is a picture of Christ dying for us.

He is also the second goat that bears the sins of the nation and was sent out into the wilderness. The atonement is complete with His sacrifice and His bearing of our sins.

John the baptist recognized Jesus and his statement is recorded in John 1:29 (ESV) The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!”

When Jesus entered heaven, He entered into the Holy of Holies for us as was required. Hebrews 9:7 (ESV) reads, but into the second only the high priest goes, and he but once a year, and not without taking blood, which he offers for himself and for the unintentional sins of the people.

The High Priest in the Old Testament would hopefully come out after the atonement but Jesus continues to be before God the Father and continues to intercede for us before God.

What is needed for us to receive this permanent pardon is our willingness to receive Christ’s sacrifice as the final payment for our sins and our hope is in His resurrection and the fact that He continues to mediate for us before God.

The question that really needs to be asked is if we are willing to accept Jesus and His sacrifice as the atonement for our sins?

For those of us who have been saved by His shed blood, the question we are asked is if we live Holy lives? 1 Peter 1:15-16 (ESV) but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy

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Leviticus 12:1-8 The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to the people of Israel, saying, ‘If a woman conceives and bears a male child, then she shall be unclean seven days. As at the time of her menstruation, she shall be unclean. And on the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. Then she shall continue for thirty-three days in the blood of her purifying. She shall not touch anything holy, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying are completed. But if she bears a female child, then she shall be unclean two weeks, as in her menstruation. And she shall continue in the blood of her purifying for sixty-six days. “‘And when the days of her purifying are completed, whether for a son or for a daughter, she shall bring to the priest at the entrance of the tent of meeting a lamb a year old for a burnt offering, and a pigeon or a turtledove for a sin offering, and he shall offer it before the LORD and make atonement for her. Then she shall be clean from the flow of her blood. This is the law for her who bears a child, either male or female. And if she cannot afford a lamb, then she shall take two turtledoves or two pigeons, one for a burnt offering and the other for a sin offering. And the priest shall make atonement for her, and she shall be clean.'”

A bizarre piece of the law is upon us and like you, it left me wondering why God would be so biased against women and especially so regarding female babies? (more…)


Leviticus 6:1-2,5-6,12,18,30 (NIV, @2011) The LORD said to Moses: “If anyone sins and is unfaithful to the LORD by deceiving a neighbor about something entrusted to them or left in their care or about something stolen, or if they cheat their neighbor… or whatever it was they swore falsely about. They must make restitution in full, add a fifth of the value to it and give it all to the owner on the day they present their guilt offering. And as a penalty they must bring to the priest, that is, to the LORD, their guilt offering, a ram from the flock, one without defect and of the proper value… The fire on the altar must be kept burning; it must not go out. Every morning the priest is to add firewood and arrange the burnt offering on the fire and burn the fat of the fellowship offerings on it… Any male descendant of Aaron may eat it. For all generations to come it is his perpetual share of the food offerings presented to the LORD. Whatever touches them will become holy’”… But any sin offering whose blood is brought into the tent of meeting to make atonement in the Holy Place must not be eaten; it must be burned up.

God certainly had serious hangups about sin and ensured He communicated His disgust of sin and the sinner and also provided a means for His people, the Israelites to make peace with Him.

The number of sacrifices, the types and the purposes ensured there was enough for the priests themselves and that the Lord’s tabernacle would never be without constant offering.

What is God’s desire for us today that is communicated through this historic text recorded around 1,445 BC? (more…)


Leviticus 1:1-9 (NIV, @2011) The LORD called to Moses and spoke to him from the tent of meeting. He said, “Speak to the Israelites and say to them: ‘When anyone among you brings an offering to the LORD, bring as your offering an animal from either the herd or the flock. “‘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. You are to lay your hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it will be accepted on your behalf to make atonement for you. You are to slaughter the young bull before the LORD, and then Aaron’s sons the priests shall bring the blood and splash it against the sides of the altar at the entrance to the tent of meeting. You are to skin the burnt offering and cut it into pieces. The sons of Aaron the priest are to put fire on the altar and arrange wood on the fire. Then Aaron’s sons the priests shall arrange the pieces, including the head and the fat, on the wood that is burning on the altar. You are to wash the internal organs and the legs with water, and the priest is to burn all of it on the altar. It is a burnt offering, a food offering, an aroma pleasing to the LORD.

In today’s day and age, digesting this instruction from God is impossible with the big thrust on animal rights and all the attention that is poured on the issue.

Was this God’s instruction or man’s smart thinking that produced a culture of blood and gore? (more…)


Romans 3:22-25 This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement,i through faith in his blood.

Paul presents us with several related questions that are foundational to our faith in today’s chapter and presents a challenging but clear argument to help us focus on Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Before you read further, I encourage you to read this chapter and dwell on each question, the argument and the response. This is not Paul writing in his own wisdom, rather it is Paul writing in Godly wisdom through the working of the Holy Spirit in him. The moment we consider the words ‘All have sinned’, our first thoughts are to question that statement. How is this BIG statement qualified? Sin in human eyes is doing something exceedingly wrong like adultery, murder, robbery, cheating, etc. and most people I know would never accept that they or their children have sinned. So what justification is there to this statement?

As little as an ill thought, a lie (white included), a bad word or any of the legally defined sins like murder, rape, etc. all are SIN to God. Any sin makes us unclean because God is good, pure and perfect. Only such a God deserves our all, not a fallen one. Therefore, no one can come before God or have a relationship with Him because we cannot be justified by God’s standards, try as we might. However, Jesus made a way possible and that was through his death on the cross because he was pure, lived a holy life, was God’s own son and was sacrificed for no fault of His. His death was for our sins and through his shed blood, our sins are atoned for. The best part is that through his resurrection, we have new life with GOD! Regardless of what happens to us in this world or the end of it because of human sin, we have an assurance of eternity with Christ! Hope this is compelling enough for you to put your faith in Jesus Christ and share the good news to all?

In His Loving Service,
ServantBoy


Luke 15:25-32
“Meanwhile, the older son was in the field. When he came near the house, he heard music and dancing. So he called one of the servants and asked him what was going on. ‘Your brother has come,’ he replied, ‘and your father has killed the fattened calf because he has him back safe and sound.’ “The older brother became angry and refused to go in. So his father went out and pleaded with him. But he answered his father, ‘Look! All these years I’ve been slaving for you and never disobeyed your orders. Yet you never gave me even a young goat so I could celebrate with my friends. But when this son of yours who has squandered your property with prostitutes comes home, you kill the fattened calf for him!’ “‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”

If we have lost anything that is of any value to us, we really feel the hurt of losing it and try all that we can to find it. There is no major realization there because everyone of us have lost many things dear to us at different points in our lives and have tried hard to find it and we know the joy of finding it. This is the very same feeling God and the hosts of heaven have every time a sinner returns to Christ. This is the same joy the father of the prodigal son had when he saw his lost son return. However, in the brother of the prodigal son, we have a lesson to learn and that is what the Lord is reminding us of today. I’m sure like me, you feel for him when he retorted to his Dad that he never permitted him to take some their resources (A lamb in those times) and party with his friends but here he was burning up far more than just a small sum to celebrate his lost son’s arrival. Was this not partial?

In another parable in the Bible, Jesus talks about laborers and their wages and he explains that whatever the length of time the laborer spends on the fields, they would get the same pay and this is also unfair in the world’s eyes. The issue here is not that God’s scales are tilted, rather it’s our understanding. To God, it did not matter the depravity of our sinfulness and therefore he measured out a perfect sin offering to atone for our sins. However big or small our sins are, he sacrificed his perfect and only son for us to have an eternity with him. What would Jesus say to this? Why should he suffer for us when he was God’s loved son? Isn’t the whole perspective different in God’s eyes? Jesus said to his disciples when they argued who would sit on his right and left that the first would be last and the last first. In God’s eyes, the paradigm is inverted and we need to realize and accept that. Our joy should be in sharing God’s love and not trying to weigh our benefit. We need to focus our eyes on the Cross and follow Jesus as he leads.

In His Loving Service,
Vineet

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A Narrow Path