I found a bible reading plan in the back of our new bible. It’s the Jesus centered bible NLT version. Each reading from the Old Testament will have a reference to or reference by Jesus. Yesterday’s reading was from Leviticus 4. Today’s is from Leviticus 19. Chapter 4 talks about sin offerings. Sin offerings were animal sacrifices, bulls for priests, rulers sacrificed young bulls, leaders sacrificed male goats, ordinary people could sacrifice female goats or sheep. The were killed before the altar and their blood was to be poured out at the base of the altar. But some of it was to be put in the horns of the altar as a fragrant offering.
When Jesus died he said “it is finished” and the temple curtain that separated the holy place from the Holy of Holies was torn, not from bottom to top, but from top to bottom.
So much symbolism here. I will only mention a couple of things. Christianity is the only world religion where God reaches down to man. The curtain was torn from top to bottom. Man and God were separated in the temple by this curtain. Through Jesus’ death we are no longer separated from God. Through Jesus’ death, all the sacrifices are completed. His one death is the better sacrifice than all the animals. God has reached down to us and for us.
Today’s reading is from Leviticus 19. Three verses stood out.
“The Lord also said to Moses, “Give the following instructions to the entire community of Israel. You must be holy because I, the Lord your God, am holy. “
How can we be Holy? Only Jesus’ blood can make us Holy.
“Do not nurse hatred in your heart for any of your relatives. Confront people directly so you will not be held guilty for their sin.”
We receive forgiveness in Jesus but we are only forgiven if we also forgive others.
“Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against a fellow Israelite, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord.”
Jesus said The 2 greatest commandments are to love the Lord our God with all of our heart, our soul, our mind and our strength and to love our neighbor as ourselves.
Leviticus 19:1-2,17-18 –
Yes Jesus changed things and removed the need for animal sacrifice but the principles have stayed the same. Jesus made the way to God accessible, but it’s only through Him. God created us and loves us but our sin has separated us from him. Through the sacrifice of his son Jesus, if we accept his sacrifice as payment for our sins and believe that God raised him from the dead, then we can be reunited with our God. God has stooped down to rescue us. God is gracious. God is merciful. God loves me. God loves you.