Last week Hello Mornings began their Advent study, “It Could Only Be Jesus“. In His deep love for each of us, God made a way to relieve and free us from the Old Testament demands. He sent His Son – Jesus. Over the next several weeks, I’ll be sharing the lessons we learned as we looked at how Jesus fulfilled prophecy, particularly of the Levitical sacrifices.
- The whole burnt offering. In Leviticus 1:1-9 and Hebrews 10:5-10, we read the whole burnt offering was for the atonement from sin. Its purpose was to satisfy God’s wrath against sin, cleanse the individual and restore relationship (fellowship) with God. All of one’s sins were placed upon the animal by the laying on of hands. The animal was then burned, a pleasing aroma to the Lord. But no matter how many sacrifices were made. there was only another to be made. Only Jesus. He was the only sacrifice once for all time. Jesus cancelled the first covenant as Jesus was the only perfect and sufficient sacrifice.
- The grain offering. Leviticus 2:1 says, “When you present grain as an offering to the Lord, the offering must consist of choice flour …” Choice flour. The best flour to be had. How often we bring the Lord (or give to others) that which is not our choicest. May we not bring to Him and others that which is not choice, best, or excellent. May we give our finest.
- The peace offering. Peace. We long for it in our lives, in our relationships, in our churches. And surely in our world. We long for peace with God and those around us. Only Jesus. He alone can bring us peace. He made peace by creating in and through Himself a one new people. One new family, united through Jesus. “For He Himself is our peace …” (Ephesians 2:14). May we pray for peace to reign, His peace over all aspects of our lives.
- The sin offering. In Leviticus 4, we find the procedures for this offering. This offering was for those who deal unintentionally (verse 2). I was moved by the grace and mercy of our Lord to recognize that there are times we truly don’t mean to do wrong. Our human nature or situations just get the best of us. God also acknowledgesÂ an entire community can sin. How precious this was to see how God purifies us both as individuals and as a congregation.
- The guilt offering. This was an offering which dealt with property loss and damages, done to both the sacred and secular (personal) property. In reading Isaiah 53:10-12, I was struck that it was God’s “good plan” to bring salvation to many through the suffering and death of the One. Verse 12 tells us, “I will give him the honors of a victorious soldier, because he exposed himself to death. He was counted among the rebels. He bore the sins of many and interceded for rebels” (NLT). Rebels – that is what we were. It is a word which is stronger than sinners. Rebels are those who willfully defy authority – defy God. Only the suffering and the superior sacrifice of Christ made it possible for me, for us, to be forgiven and there to be no need for any more sacrifices to be made. And may we all say “Praise God”.
Each of these sacrifices, pointing us to the One sufficient sacrifice.
It could only be Jesus.