NOTE: On the advice of two friends, I have decided to pick up the Bible study at the same spot where Christine is reading today, even though I wasn’t able to write much during the past month. I will attempt to go back and write studies to fill in the missing ones.
Good morning! So far in Leviticus, we have seen 5 types of offerings (further defined here):
- Offering (korban)
- Burnt offering (olah)
- Grain/Meat/Food offering (minchah)
- Peace/Fellowship offering (shelamim)
- Sin offering (chatat)
- Trespass/Guilt offering (asham)
In Leviticus 1:1-6:7, Moses was given instructions for what the people of Israel were to do when they brought these types of offerings.
In Leviticus 6:8-7:21, the priests were given instructions for how to prepare each of these types of offerings.
So since we’re reading in Leviticus 6 today, it feels like we are finishing the section on “trespass offerings” started in Leviticus 5:14. But are we? I’m not sure! Chapter 5 ends with a “strong” paragraph division (פ, a p’tuchah), which usually indicates a strong break in what topic we’re discussing.
But Leviticus 6:1 starts with more things people might have trespassed against others about. Hmmm… (scratching head…)
My husband noted in one of his teachings on this section that a trespass offering was given for unintentional sins. These are sins that people did without realizing they were hurting someone else. For instance,
“If a person commits a trespass, and sins unintentionally in regard to the holy things of YHVH…” (Leviticus 5:14).
“If a person sins, and commits any of these things which are forbidden to be done by the commandments of YHVH, though he does not know it…” (Leviticus 5:17).
But in Leviticus 6, the sins don’t sound so unintentional.
“If a person sins and commits a trespass against the Lord by lying to his neighbor…” (Leviticus 6:1).
If a person is caught lying, what do they usually do? Deny it! “I never did that!” or “Oh, it was an accident.” Of course, sometimes they are caught with that lie, and even though they are embarrassed, they have to pay back what was damaged with an extra fifth added to make justice, plus they have to bring a trespass offering (which costs some money).
Sin costs something! But it costs more when it’s intentional!
Leviticus 6:8 starts a new section, which starts with a “weak” paragraph division (ס, a stumah). So while it feels like a complete change of subject to me, it must not be in YHVH’s eyes. (Isn’t this amazing?)
As I already mentioned, YHVH gives instructions to Moses for the priests on how to prepare each of the 5 kinds of korban, or offering. We don’t see the next “strong” paragraph division (פ, a p’tuchah) until beginning of Leviticus 6:12,
“And the fire on the altar shall be kept burning on it; it shall not be put out….”
This passage is important to me because this is symbolic of the Temple of my heart.
- “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service” (Romans 12:1).
- “Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? If anyone defiles the temple of God, God will destroy him. For the temple of God is holy, which temple you are… Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?” (1 Corinthians 3:16-17, 19).
- “But you shall be named the priests of YHVH, they shall call you the servants of our God. You shall eat the riches [fat] of the Gentiles, and in their glory you shall boast. Instead of your shame you shall have double honor, and instead of confusion they shall rejoice in their portion. Therefore in their land they shall possess double; everlasting joy shall be theirs” (Isaiah 61:6-7).
- “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” (1 Peter 2:9).
One of my favorite verses is,
“Let my prayer be set forth before You as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice” (Psalm 141:2).
Prayer is a way I can come before Yeshua the High Priest (Hebrews 4:16) in the morning and evening, and it’s as pleasing to Him as the smell of incense or the evening sacrifice.
But if we want to come into His presence with our requests, our lives are to be set apart as “holy” (clean and dedicated to a special purpose). Tomorrow we’re going to talk about how the priests were consecrated (set apart), but I already noticed today that nothing dirty (unclean) is allowed anywhere near these sacrifices. It is an abomination to YHVH. (An abomination is something that makes the Creator want to vomit!)
- “It shall be a statute forever in your generations concerning the offerings made by fire to the Lord. Everyone who touches them must be holy” (Leviticus 6:18).
- “In a holy place it shall be eaten, in the court of the tabernacle of meeting. Everyone who touches its flesh must be holy. And when its blood is sprinkled on any garment, you shall wash that on which it was sprinkled, in a holy place. But the earthen vessel in which it is boiled shall be broken. And if it is boiled in a bronze pot, it shall be both scoured and rinsed in water. All the males among the priests may eat it. It is most holy” (Leviticus 6:26-29).
- “Likewise this is the law of the trespass offering (it is most holy)” (Leviticus 7:1).
- “The flesh that touches any unclean thing shall not be eaten. It shall be burned with fire. And as for the clean flesh, all who are clean may eat of it” (Leviticus 7:19).
- “But the person who eats the flesh of the sacrifice of the peace offering that belongs to the Lord, while he is unclean, that person shall be cut off from his people. Moreover the person who touches any unclean thing, such as human uncleanness, an unclean animal, or any abominable unclean thing, and who eats the flesh of the sacrifice of the peace offering that belongs to YHVH, that person shall be cut off from his people” (Leviticus 7:20-21).
To be “cut off” means to be separated from the people of YHVH, from all the blessings and covenant promises given to them! Often this was accomplished by the death penalty! It’s a very serious thing to allow the Dwelling Place of YHVH to be defiled!
We haven’t defined what unclean things are yet, but that’s coming in just a couple days! I encourage you to make a list like the one I made here.
Some things were so “holy” or set apart, that they were reserved only for YHVH!
“Whoever eats the fat of the animal of which men offer an offering made by fire to YHVH, the person who eats it shall be cut off from his people. Moreover you shall not eat any blood in any of your dwellings, whether of bird or beast. Whoever eats any blood, that person shall be cut off from his people” (Leviticus 7:25-27).
So what are some examples of this? Suet is fat from the inner parts of a cow (Leviticus 3:3-4), and it is not to be eaten. However, those in my ancestral past, such as Scotland and Wales, love to make a clootie pudding, made with this suet, for special occasions such as weddings or Christmas. There is also the traditional black pudding, made with blood from cows or pigs — and named a superfood in recent years. The Germans have their blood sausages, and the Africans give blood to pregnant mothers, because it probably IS a superfood! There are other, more hideous uses of blood that we won’t even dive into. However, our Creator says it is not to be eaten — and anyone who does is to be cut off from the people of Israel!
We have a great privilege, to be the dwelling place of YHVH! However, with great privilege comes great responsibility! We must keep our lives clean — and this is a really practical topic! We’ll continue to discuss it in the days ahead.
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture in this blog post taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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