Posts Tagged ‘Congregation’


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 19:1-2,4,9-10,19,31-32,36-37 (ESV) And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to all the congregation of the people of Israel and say to them, You shall be holy, for I the LORD your God am holy… Do not turn to idols or make for yourselves any gods of cast metal: I am the LORD your God… “When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field right up to its edge, neither shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest. And you shall not strip your vineyard bare, neither shall you gather the fallen grapes of your vineyard. You shall leave them for the poor and for the sojourner: I am the LORD your God… “You shall keep my statutes. You shall not let your cattle breed with a different kind… “Do not turn to mediums or necromancers; do not seek them out, and so make yourselves unclean by them: I am the LORD your God. “You shall stand up before the gray head and honor the face of an old man, and you shall fear your God: I am the LORD… You shall have just balances, just weights, a just ephah, and a just hin: I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt. And you shall observe all my statutes and all my rules, and do them: I am the LORD.”

What a treasure trove of good advice this chapter is and I never appreciated it till I reached this point in my journey across the Bible.

The challenge however is to be able to draw something specific from it and once again I wish I could split this chapter into many devotionals but God wants me to keep at His work.

What today are the key thoughts God has given us and how can we apply it into our lives? (more…)


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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