Reading 1.4: Leviticus 4:1-21

Jan 04, 2010

READ:    Leviticus 4:1-21

Two ‘sin offering’ scenarios.

It is a very worthwhile time to note, if you haven’t noticed this already, a particular action that occurs when an animal is offered as the sacrifice – as is the case of these two circumstances.  It may depend upon the version that you read from as to how obvious this action is described.  Essentially, it boils down to the fact that it is up to the guilty person that has brought the offering to lay their hands on the animal’s head…and to kill it (vs. 4, 15).  That is up close and personal!

I’ve watched animals being killed.  A swift hit with an axe that turned into a few attempted swift hits  (for a chicken); a shovel to a snake; a quick breaking/wringing of the neck; I’ve seen them done but I would find it hard to do myself.  Too hands on and personal for my licking and comfort zone.  When the Israelites brought their offerings because of their guilt due to some wrong doing, it seems they had to kill the animal themselves.  Because the blood was to be separated for the sacrificial purposes the killing was generally done by slitting the throat and letting the animal bleed.  Sounds nasty, ay!  I guess the process magnified the guilt in the hand of the guilty.

Can you imagine yourself standing over a lamb, slitting its throat???

Can you imagine yourself killing God???

Although you may not have physically cut His throat, Jesus, the Son of God, died because of you.  It is true, He died willingly, but He died because of your guilt.  ‘He was led as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before its shearers is silent, So he opened not his mouth’ – Is 53:7.  Throughout history the Jews have been condemned for killing Jesus; although they may have physically cried for Him to be crucified at that exact point in the space and time continuum, and although it was the Romans that hammered the nails, in many ways they were just echoing the actions of our own guilt.  Jesus, the Son of God became your lamb and He died because of your guilt and He bore your sins upon His head – if you ask me, that is up close and personal.

Such a thought is not meant to make you feel guilty all over again; such a thought is supposed to humble you to the point of praising God for being that selfless servant that became a man and played the lamb even to the point of death for you!