Anyone who has read through the book of Leviticus can’t help but notice the emphasis on sacrifices. There were prescribed animals for different kinds of personal and national offerings, as well as for occasions like the Sabbath and feasts. Why did God require this? And why was He so specific about the details of worship?
There were three lessons God was teaching Israel through His law.
- God is holy and separate from sinful man.
• Sin is costly, requiring a payment or sacrifice.
• There is no forgiveness without the shedding of blood.
All the laws, ceremonies, priests, and offerings in the Old Testament were a shadow of the good things to come. None of the animal sacrifices could actually take away sin. While serving as a reminder of sin, those offerings also pointed ahead to the Lamb of God: Jesus Christ came to be the final sacrifice. He gave His life at Calvary, bringing complete forgiveness for all sin.
We who live on this side of the cross may be tempted to think too lightly of our sins because we have never sacrificed an animal or seen blood flowing from the throat of an innocent lamb because of our wrongdoing. Nor did we watch the crucifixion of our Lord as He hung on the cross, bearing God’s judgment for our sins. The only cost we actually see involves the consequences we suffer for our rebellion and disobedience.
As difficult and painful as it may be, let’s seriously consider what our sins cost the Savior. If we allow our hearts to be broken, our worship and gratitude will overflow, and we’ll respond by living a holy life.
Bible in One Year: 1 Samuel 15-16