The Sin Offering, Part II
For as long as 3000 years, there has been in India what we would call the Caste system. The word is actually derived from the Portuguese word casta which means “race, breed, lineage” and the like. That was derived from an earlier concept meaning “pure” or “unmixed.”
The actual words used to describe the Caste system are Varna and Jati (Jaytee). Varna means “color” and is used as a framework for grouping people into classes. Jati means “birth.” This is considered to have its basis in religion. In the end, this is not uncommon in the world. Religion often finds ways of oppressing people. In the case of the Indian Castes, there are five major groups. At the top are the Brahmins, and at the bottom are the Dalits.
None of the Castes are to intermarry, but the poor Dalits, or untouchables, aren’t even be spoken to or looked at for the most part. As a Caste, they are considered so low that they aren’t even considered a Caste. They were excluded from the four-fold Varna system and simply formed into the unmentionable “Fifth Varna.” And so they are a Caste that isn’t a Caste.
Although there are high-ranking and low ranking people within the Hebrew society, there is the underlying truth that all humans are created in God’s image and are of equal worth. This may not always be the idea which comes forth out of many Jewish sects today. Some of the religious sects look at the Gentile world as “far below them.” They are the righteous and favored, the Gentiles are the dogs. Such is life for those who reject the truths of the Bible, or who selectively pick and choose certain verses to merge with a presupposition about others.
Even in Christianity, there have been those who have used the Scriptures to justify the notion that one group of people is less valuable than another. Slavery, subjugation of other people groups, and a diminishing of the value of life grows naturally out of a liberal view on humanity.
However, the more biblically fundamental a person is, and the more conservative they are in their life, political, and work ethic, the more a true sense of value for human life is realized. The notion of abortion becomes abhorrent, the concept of euthanasia is seen for the evil that it truly is, and the equality of all men is brought into its highest place. Why is this? It is because the ground is level at the foot of the cross.
There is but one offering by which all must come to God the Father. The richest person can offer no more, and the poorest person can come with no less. The cross is, above all, the great equalizer. No wonder the lower Castes in India love the message of the gospel, and the higher classes shout to have it banned.
The Old Testament focuses almost solely on the Hebrew people and their relationship with God, with but a few exceptions. The outside nations did their own thing, and they were, for the most part, regarded in a negative light, but the value of the individual – whether Hebrew or Gentile – is actually quite prominently on display.
However, if we were to just look at the dealings within the Hebrew society, and nowhere else, we would note that there is no such thing as a Caste system. There were Hebrew slaves, but they became that way for a reason, and they were to be given their freedom after certain intervals of time, or if certain other occasions required it by law.
There were also nobles within the society, but they were bound under the exact same laws as everyone else. In the end, one cannot find a system where the poor, or certain other groups, were intentionally kept subjugated by the framework for the society which is the Law of Moses. In fact, just the opposite is true.
Text Verse: “Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us: we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled to God. 21 For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” 2 Corinthians 5:20, 21
The sin offerings of Israel highlight the fact that all were bound under the law, all had to come to God for forgiveness when they transgressed the law, and all were given equal forgiveness when they came forward for it. But within the sin offerings, there are clues that God actually exalted the lowly. The terminology used in the verses today highlights the offerings of the poor people in a way that is not highlighted for the high priest or the ruler who sinned. These things need to be highlighted, because they show that God looks on the poor and lowly and regards them.
He doesn’t look more favorably on some and less on others just because of their looks, the size of their pocketbook, or the type of car they drive. Instead, he looks on the heart and determines the value of the person. As I said, at the foot of the cross, the ground is level. What a wonderful God to allow all who will come, to come.
If you have bad breath because you can’t afford to go to the dentist, or if you make minimum wage and live with your parents because there is no other place you can afford, that in no way means that you are lacking worth in God’s sight. If you have called on Christ, you are well-loved and highly favored. Paul writes about that a lot in the New Testament. We’ll get there soon enough, but it’s even evident here in the Old. Yes, these things are all to be found in His superior word. And so let’s turn to that precious word once again and… May God speak to us through His word today and may His glorious name ever be praised.
I. The Sin of the Congregation (verses 13-21)
13 ‘Now if the whole congregation of Israel sins unintentionally,
As was saw in the previous sermon, the words of verse 3 which say, “…if a person sins,” is speaking of each of the categories that will then be listed. The first was a sin of the high priest. The next category is now given which deals with the entire congregation. The categories are following a descending ladder of importance.
If the high priest were to sin, there could be no mediation for anyone until his sin was atoned for. That is why his category was first. Now, the sin of the entire congregation is given. As a unified whole, atonement must be made before the congregation can have a proper relationship with the Lord once again. An example of corporate guilt is that of the sin of Achan in Joshua 7.
One person transgressed the command of the Lord, but it brought guilt upon the entire congregation. Until that sin was dealt with, the entire congregation was considered as guilty. This type of corporate sin is seen again in 1 Samuel 14 when the people collectively slaughtered and ate meat which still contained the blood in it. This is the type of sin being referred to here.
The word which is translated as “unintentionally” is shagah. This is the first of 21 times it will be used. It means to cause to go astray or to make wander. It in essence is the committing of sin through ignorance. For example, in Proverbs it is used of the person being led astray, not the one doing the leading –
There would be two kinds of unintentional sin which would qualify here. The first would be where attention is called to the sinfulness of an act, and that sin is then acknowledged. The second would be where a sinful act is not understood to be sinful until the law is explained. Once the explanation is given, and the deed was realized as sinful, a sin-offering would be needed. Either way, what was wrong was revealed after being hidden…
13 (con’t) and the thing is hidden from the eyes of the assembly, and they have done something against any of the commandments of the Lord in anything which should not be done, and are guilty;
These words show the fundamental truth that ignorance before the law is no excuse. The congregation has violated a commandment and they bear guilt because of it. In 2 Samuel 21, we will see that when Saul violated the covenant which was made between Israel and the Gibeonites, there was a famine in the land because of it. David had to inquire of the Lord to find out why the famine persisted. Such examples show that the congregation was considered guilty before the Lord because a violation of a covenant between men is still a violation of the Lord’s word because vows are to be held sacred.
Here two new words are introduced into the Bible. The first is alam, translated here as “hidden.” It means blind, hide self, secret thing. It comes from a root meaning to veil from sight. Solomon uses it in Ecclesiastes as a thing hidden from sight –
The second new word translated here as “and are guilty” is asham. This word is variously translated, having come from a root which means “to be guilty.” Thus, by implication, it can mean “to be punished” or even “to perish.” Ezekiel, speaking of the sins of Jerusalem, uses the word to identify their guilt –
“You have become guilty by the blood which you have shed, and have defiled yourself with the idols which you have made. You have caused your days to draw near, and have come to the end of your years; therefore I have made you a reproach to the nations, and a mockery to all countries.” Ezekiel 22:4
And so with these two new words, we see that even with a sin that was hidden from the people’s knowledge, they were still considered guilty. That leads to our next verse…
14 when the sin which they have committed becomes known, then the assembly shall offer a young bull for the sin, and bring it before the tabernacle of meeting.
Other than the Day of Atonement, there would be no reason for an offering for sin when there was no idea that the congregation had sinned. However, should the sin become known, an offering would then be required. What is implied is that if one was not made after the guilt was realized, the sin would go from being unintentional to intentional. To avoid this, the offering had to be made. In this case, the same offering as for that of the high priest of verse 4 would be required, a young bull.
Because the whole congregation was guilty, it included the high priest. Therefore, in type and picture, there needed to be the same sin-offering as there was for just the priest. As we saw, the bull points to Christ. Without a sin-offering for the priest, who is included in this transgression, there would be no one to mediate between the people and God. Having said this, we read the following in Numbers 15:24 –
“…then it will be, if it is unintentionally committed, without the knowledge of the congregation, that the whole congregation shall offer one young bull as a burnt offering, as a sweet aroma to the Lord, with its grain offering and its drink offering, according to the ordinance, and one kid of the goats as a sin offering.”
Here in Leviticus a bull is the stated requirement, but in Numbers, the sin-offering is to be a goat. The difference is believed by some to be that Numbers is speaking of a sin of omission concerning a ceremonial duty rather than a violation of a commandment. However, it never says this.
What seems more likely is that the sin-offering mentioned in Numbers 15 is speaking of that which is detailed for the sin of the congregation on the Day of Atonement. The priest offered a bull for his sins during the year, and then he offered a goat for the sins of the people. If, however, the sin is recognized during the year, before the day of atonement, and which involved the whole congregation, then a bull was to be used for all of the people, including the high priest.
And, as a point of clarification, this verse says that “the assembly” shall offer the bull. The intent is not that every person in the congregation would have to lay their hands on the animal. Rather, it is an idiomatic expression that the bull will be offered on behalf of the assembly. Whether the leaders of the tribes, or certain designated people performed the ritual, they stood on behalf of the entire assembly. This becomes more evident with the next words…
15 And the elders of the congregation shall lay their hands on the head of the bull before the Lord. Then the bull shall be killed before the Lord.
The NKJV has done a good job of terminology in these three verses. Two different words are used for “congregation” and “assembly” in the Hebrew. As two different words are used, it makes sense to distinguish them in the English as well. They are both very close in meaning, but the Lord decided to use them both, so hat’s off to the NKJV for being precise.
There is the assembly which is here noted as being a congregation, led by these elders. It is they who are designated to lay their hands upon the head of the bull in the presence of the Lord. Thus, they are signifying the transfer of the sin from the entire congregation, through them, to the bull. As the high priest shared in the guilt of the congregation, and as he belonged to a tribe of Israel, then we can infer that either he, or a designated leader of Levi, would stand and confess for the entire tribe. Once this was done, the bull was then to be slaughtered. Again as always, there is no remission of sin without the shedding of blood. An innocent must die in the place of the guilty.
16 The anointed priest shall bring some of the bull’s blood to the tabernacle of meeting.
This verse corresponds to verse 5, and the wording is very similar in the Hebrew. The same procedures were to be followed because the matter involved the mediator who stood between the people and the Lord. As he was to come into the holy place each day, he would be unqualified to do so unless his sin – which was united with the whole congregation – was dealt with first. His duties would be ineffective, and therefore there would be no forgiveness for himself or the people he represented.
17 Then the priest shall dip his finger in the blood and sprinkle it seven times before the Lord, in front of the veil.
Again, the words are very similar to, but not exactly the same as, those in verse 6. As with verse 6, every detail points to Christ. If you missed that sermon, you have your assignment for this evening. Just as God created in six days and rested on the seventh, being satisfied with His accomplished work, so the blood is sprinkled until there is satisfaction for the sins committed. This picture of the work of Christ is realized in the seventh sprinkling. In all ways, whether it is a Sabbath day observance, or full cleansing from sin, each instance of Christ’s work shows completion for the believer.
18 And he shall put some of the blood on the horns of the altar which is before the Lord, which is in the tabernacle of meeting; and he shall pour the remaining blood at the base of the altar of burnt offering, which is at the door of the tabernacle of meeting.
Once again, this verse is similar to verse 4:7. It says essentially the same thing, just restructuring the words a bit. However, the same procedures are followed as for that sin-offering.
19 He shall take all the fat from it and burn it on the altar.
This verse is a condensed form of verses 4:8-10. What was more exactingly described then, is now simplified. However, it carries the same meaning.
20 And he shall do with the bull as he did with the bull as a sin offering; thus he shall do with it. So the priest shall make atonement for them, and it shall be forgiven them.
The same result of atoning for the high priest’s sins of the earlier verses will be the result for the entire congregation in these verses. The sin of the high priest, which was included in the sin of the congregation was forgiven, and thus his mediation on behalf of the people is to be accepted as well. The sin-debt was removed in the death of the bull and its associated rituals.
21 Then he shall carry the bull outside the camp, and burn it as he burned the first bull.
This verse corresponds to verse 12. As was done with the bull for the high priest’s sin, so is done with the bull for the sin of the congregation.
21 (con’t) It is a sin offering for the assembly.
The sin-offering did not undo the sin, and any wrong which was done was left unchanged, but the guilt for the sin was removed. The sin was taken from His sight so that the people stood before Him without fault. A New Testament equivalent of this corporate sin is found in Acts 3 –
“The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified His Servant Jesus, whom you delivered up and denied in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let Him go. 14 But you denied the Holy One and the Just, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, 15 and killed the Prince of life, whom God raised from the dead, of which we are witnesses. 16 And His name, through faith in His name, has made this man strong, whom you see and know. Yes, the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.
17 ‘Yet now, brethren, I know that you did it in ignorance, as did also your rulers.’” Acts 3:13-17
The people of Israel crucified Christ in ignorance, and thus they were guilty. However, as He is the final sacrifice for the sins of the people, which these only looked forward to, then their collective guilt remained. One must go outside the camp to Christ, just as the carcass of the bull was carried outside the camp. The collective guilt of Israel remains to this day. Until they collectively call out to Him, the national guilt will remain. Such is the nature of rejecting the One to whom these rites and rituals only pointed. This will become abundantly evident when we get to Leviticus 16. Stay tuned for amazing details.
We have sinned and now we realize what we have done
We rejected God’s offer, the Gift he sent to us
We have crucified our Lord, God’s perfect Son
Together we have rejected the Lord Jesus
But we did it in ignorance and so there is hope
For us there is an offering for sin
It is through His blood, atonement unlimited in scope
Through Him peace is restored, and there can be fellowship again
Thank God for His tender mercies upon us
Thank God for this marvelous thing He has done
Through the cross of Calvary and the death of Jesus
We are whole once again, and the victory is won
II. The Sin of the Ruler (verses 22-26)
22 ‘When a ruler has sinned, and done something unintentionally against any of the commandments of the Lord his God in anything which should not be done, and is guilty,
The next category to be specified is the nasiy, or ruler. It is a common word which is translated as “prince,” “chief,” “captain,” “ruler,” etc. The word is derived from nasa, which means “to rise,” or “to lift.” Thus, it is one lifted up or exalted. What this particular verse is referring to is debated. Some say it is speaking of a main ruler, like the judge or king of Israel. Others say it is referring to anyone placed above others, as in a leader of a tribe.
However, if we look at the other sin-offerings, we may come to the correct conclusion. In verse 4:2, 4:3, 4:13, and 4:27, at the beginning of each category, it uses the term Lord, meaning Yehovah. However, in this verse, it says Yehovah elohav, or “The Lord his God.” Thus, it appears to be speaking of a ruler who is appointed directly by God.
In Numbers 1, the leaders of each tribe were designated by name. Probably, this sacrifice would then include them. Moses was specifically called, and so this would probably refer to him. Judges were called by God, and so it would seem to refer to them. The kingly line was called by God, and so it would likely refer to them. It would not be right to be dogmatic here, but the specific term seems to speak out to one who was specifically called by God, and then those who followed after them in that same line afterwards. Whatever the true meaning, when this person sinned unintentionally before the Lord his God, he became guilty.
23 or if his sin which he has committed comes to his knowledge,
This is all one thought, and so it should read “and,” “if,” or “also,” but not “or.” The word in Hebrew is ow, and so most translations say “or,” but because it is one continuous thought, it indicates the result of what he has learned. He committed a sin, and then at some point he became aware of it. Upon realizing the error, he must make atonement for that same sin.
23 (con’t) he shall bring as his offering a kid of the goats,
The animal here is not a bull, but rather a goat, but more specifically it is a sa’iyr izzim, or hairy goat. The word sa’iyr was first used to describe Esau, the hairy son of Isaac. To understand the significance of this offering, one must understand the significance of hair in the Bible. It denotes awareness. But more specifically, it denotes an awareness of sin. Esau was used as a picture of Adam, who gained a conscience, at the time of the fall.
Thus, the hairy goat is used as a symbol of the consciousness of sin. The bull pictured Christ the high priest. Likewise, it pictured Christ the leader of the congregation, to whom the congregation is united. Here, the goat pictures Christ, who came to die for the awareness of sin in fallen man. He is the sin-offering for all who acknowledge their sin, because they are conscious of it. In this case, it is the ruler of the people who is accountable to God for his sin.
23 (con’t) a male without blemish.
Only a perfect specimen could be sacrificed in place of the sin of the ruler. Again, it looks to Christ who, as Peter notes, was without spot or blemish. He was the perfect Sacrifice for the sins committed by one appointed by God because He too was appointed by God, but was without sin of His own.
24 And he shall lay his hand on the head of the goat,
As always, this signifies that the guilty is requesting mercy because an innocent is being offered in place of the offender. It looks to Christ as our perfect Substitute, dying in our place.
24 (con’t) and kill it at the place where they kill the burnt offering before the Lord.
This is on the north side of the altar, corresponding to the north part of Jerusalem where Christ died in fulfillment of the prophetic picture which we are here given. As in type, so in Anti-type…
24 (con’t) It is a sin offering.
The hairy goat took the place of the man who had become conscious of his sin. The conscious Christ, takes the place of those appointed by God to lead, and who become conscious of their sin, requesting God’s mercy and that they be pardoned through Christ who removes the guilt from them.
25 The priest shall take some of the blood of the sin offering with his finger, put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and pour its blood at the base of the altar of burnt offering.
Here, the blood does not need to be carried into the Holy place and handled as it was for either the high priest or the whole congregation. This is because in fulfillment of the type, Christ died, thus becoming our high priest. He is able to purify His people constantly, having no sin of His own to restrict Him from entering the Lord’s presence.
The horns denote the presence and power of God. As there are four pointing out in four directions, they denote the power of God in Christ which is realized to the four corners of the earth. His sacrifice is sufficient to forgive any and all who come to Him. His omnipresence and omnipotence are thus symbolized in these horns.
26 And he shall burn all its fat on the altar, like the fat of the sacrifice of the peace offering.
As we saw, and without repeating all of the details, the fat looked forward to Christ and His work. It was to be burned as incense upon the altar to be a sweet fragrance to God. Such is the atonement of man’s sin through the work of Christ for him.
We are at verse 26, and we have already seen about 6 jillion pictures of Christ. Every aspect of these seemingly mundane and outdated rituals points directly to our wonderful Savior who has done all of the work necessary to reconcile us to God.
26 (con’t) So the priest shall make atonement for him concerning his sin,
As I just noted, Christ is our High Priest. As the work of Christ is the fulfillment of what was needed for the priests, they can now be used to picture his work. He is the One who makes atonement for us. As you can see, each subsequent offering follows logically after the one which precedes it. One step at a time, the entire process is given to show us the totality of what He has done for us.
26 (con’t) and it shall be forgiven him.
This forgiveness is judicial, meaning that it is legally forgiven. Thus, it is forgiven from a civil standpoint within the community, and it is also forgiven in an actual manner as well. This means that it is really and forever forgiven based upon faith in the Messiah to come. Faith, however, is the key. The prophets of Israel speak of the useless nature of offerings which were made without true repentance for what the offerings signified.
What kind of a ruler have I been?
I am supposed to be an example for those under me
And yet, I have transgressed the command, am I done in?
My sin is exposed; I have been found guilty
But I know God’s law offers mercy for what I have done
With an offering at the altar I can find release
I confess my sin against God, against the Holy One
And in my offering, the enmity will cease
Thank God for the cross of Calvary where my sin is put away
Thank God for the blood shed there for me
In calling out for mercy shines the light of a new day
Such glorious forgiveness streaming from that cross on Calvary
III. The Sin of the Common People (verses 27-35)
27 ‘If anyone of the common people sins unintentionally by doing something against any of the commandments of the Lord in anything which ought not to be done, and is guilty,
When I lived in Malaysia, they had a term for indigenous people, bumiputera, or sons of the soil. This was a term brought in from the Sanskrit word bhumiputra – bhumi meaning “earth” or “land,” and putra meaning “son.” The Malay people adopted this term in the 1970s to refer to themselves because they lived there all along.
However, the Chinese moved in, and like Chinese do, they worked hard and procreated quickly. They became wealthy, prosperous, and numerous. The Malays live a little less aggressively. Nap time is more important than work time, and eating durian is preferable to racing off to the tin mines.
Eventually, the Malays, who were still in the majority, voted themselves in many benefits at the expense of the harder working Chinese. Had they not done this, they would never get nice cars and houses… working for stuff like that is so much more difficult than having someone else do it for you. In America, you would lump them under the larger term “democrat.” Instead of eating durian, they mostly prefer Starbucks, but the attitude is the same.
This has nothing to do with the sin-offerings mentioned here, except that the fourth category of sin-offering is that of the am ha’arets, or “people of the land.” It is a term which indicates all of the common people.
Here though, the words v’im nephesh ahat are used – “And if soul, one.” In other words, rather than a corporate sin as was seen in verses 13-21, this is speaking of the sin of an individual, but not one of the other two categories of the high priest or the ruler. This group of individuals will finish up the sin-offering requirements. If any one person so designated was to commit an unintentional sin as is specified, and they become guilty…
28 or if his sin which he has committed comes to his knowledge,
Again as in verse 23, rather than being a contrasting word, “or,” this should be a word of explanation, “and.” He has sinned, and now the sin has come to his attention. When this is the case…
28 (con’t) then he shall bring as his offering a kid of the goats, a female without blemish, for his sin which he has committed.
The offering here, instead of being a sa’yir, or male hairy goat, is to be a seirah, or female hairy goat. The reason for the change is the same as with the other offerings. The female was of less value, and therefore it was more affordable for the common people. As always, the Lord is looking after the people, attending to them in the most merciful way. However, the symbolism is the same. The hairy goat is a symbol of the awareness of sin.
29 And he shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering, and kill the sin offering at the place of the burnt offering.
These words very closely correspond to those of verse 24 with just a few small changes in the wording. The acknowledgment of sin is made, the hands are placed, and the animal is slaughtered at the north side of the altar. How could Christ do this for us!
30 Then the priest shall take some of its blood with his finger, put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and pour all the remaining blood at the base of the altar.
This verse very closely corresponds to verse 25. There is small change in the wording, and the intent is the essentially the same. Every type and picture of Christ seen then for the ruler is seen again here for the people of the land, the common folk.
31 He shall remove all its fat, as fat is removed from the sacrifice of the peace offering; and the priest shall burn it on the altar for a sweet aroma to the Lord.
Just as with the previous offering, so it is with this one. The fat which was detailed for there is removed in this one also, and it is burnt as incense to the Lord. However, unlike the offering for the high priest, the congregation as a whole, or the ruler, the words “for a sweet aroma to the Lord” are added.
Although the particular word, qatar, or that of burning like incense, was used in all of them, only this sin-offering includes the extra words of favor. Each detail is repeated, and even expanded on, to show that the sin of the lowly person is forgiven just as fully and as graciously as it is for the greatest of all. In fact, the forgiveness of the lowly person is actually exalted in the use of the terminology.
31 (con’t) So the priest shall make atonement for him, and it shall be forgiven him.
As it was for Israel with a fallible high priest, so it is for those in the church with the perfect and eternal High Priest. The common folk are provided the same atonement, and they receive the same forgiveness.
32 ‘If he brings a lamb as his sin offering, he shall bring a female without blemish.
As an additional option for the common folk, a kebes, or lamb could be brought instead of a hairy goat. The word kebes is used more than 105 times, and yet all but less than 20 are used in connection with sacrifices. The word comes from a root which means “to dominate.” It thus symbolizes Christ’s domination over sin, and so this offering is an acceptable one for this reason. In this lamb, we hear the words of John the Baptist ringing out –
“Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” John 14:29
This, like all other sacrifices, was to be tamim, or without blemish.
33 Then he shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering, and kill it as a sin offering at the place where they kill the burnt offering.
These words are very close to those of verse 29. All pointing to Christ, all calling us to remember His marvelous deeds which for 1500 years were typified, day in and day out, at the sanctuary where the people came to confess and be restored to a right standing with the Lord.
34 The priest shall take some of the blood of the sin offering with his finger, put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and pour all the remaining blood at the base of the altar.
These words are practically identical to those of verse 30, but with only a couple small changes. Exactly the same ritual is performed here as with that of the female goat, and that ritual points ahead in time to the cross of Calvary, and the pure and perfect atonement which is found in Christ Jesus the Lord.
*35 He shall remove all its fat, as the fat of the lamb is removed from the sacrifice of the peace offering. Then the priest shall burn it on the altar, according to the offerings made by fire to the Lord. So the priest shall make atonement for his sin that he has committed, and it shall be forgiven him.
These words closely correspond to those of verse 31, telling us the same thing once again. The only major difference here is that a lamb can be selected instead of a goat. Both animals picture Christ in their own way, and both are thus ultimately fulfilled in His one-time and for-all-time sin-offering for the common people. How blessed we are to be the recipients of such marvelous wonder!
Though I have tied each and every offering in to that of Christ’s offering, it should be noted that the Greek word used by Paul in 2 Corinthians 5:21, which was our text verse for the day, is harmartian – a sin-offering. That same word was used by the Greek translators of the Old Testament more than 80 times for the Hebrew word khatta’ah, or sin. It is then translated into the English as “sin-offering.”
The Lord has spent an enormous amount of time in man’s history here on earth trying to wake us up to the fact that it is all about Jesus Christ. Every word, not just from a biased view by myself or an aberrant group of Jesus-nut scholars, but every word from countless texts and commentaries which span the ages, shows us that Jesus Christ is the sole Person that God wants us to focus on.
Let’s do our best to not get caught up in fawning over sports stars, eloquent orators, fancy musicians, or even have crazy ideas about religious figures like Mary, Krishna, muhammed, or anyone else. Instead, let us fix our eyes on Jesus, let us fix our attention on His word, and let us secret away in our hearts God’s love for us, all prominently displayed in the cross of Calvary.
May our one boast be in the cross of Christ by whom the world has been crucified to us, and we to the world. Live your life with that high and noble banner ever before you. Jesus Christ is our sin-offering. He is the perfect and unstained Lamb of God who truly and forever takes away the sin of the world. Praise God for Jesus Christ our Lord.
Closing Verse: “Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.” Ephesians 5:1, 2
Next Week: Leviticus 5:1-19 Something to make your heart sing…(The Trespass Offering) (7th Leviticus Sermon)
The Lord has you exactly where He wants you. He has a good plan and purpose for you. Even if you have a lifetime of sin heaped up behind you, He can wash it away and purify you completely and wholly. So follow Him and trust Him and He will do marvelous things for you and through you.
Christ, Our Sin Offering
Now if the whole congregation of Israel sins unintentionally
And the thing is hidden from the eyes of the assembly
And they have done something against
Any of the commandments of the Lord
In anything which should not be done
And are guilty, according to His word
When the sin which they have committed
Becomes known, then the assembly
Shall offer a young bull for the sin
And bring it before the tabernacle of meeting, so shall it be
And the elders of the congregation
Shall lay their hands on the head of the bull before the Lord
Then the bull shall be killed before the Lord
This is according to My word
The anointed priest shall bring
Some of the bull’s blood to the tabernacle of meeting
Then the priest shall dip his finger
In the blood and sprinkle it seven times before the Lord
In front of the veil
So he shall do according to this word
And he shall put some of the blood on the horns of the altar
Which is before the Lord
Which is in the tabernacle of meeting, in this he shall not falter
And he shall pour the remaining blood
At the base of the altar of burnt offering
Which is at the door of the tabernacle of meeting
Such shall be the appropriate proffering
He shall take all the fat
From it and burn it on the altar
And he shall do with the bull
As he did with the bull as a sin offering; in this he must not falter
Thus he shall do with it
To this he shall commit
So the priest shall for them atonement make
And it shall be forgiven them for their sake
Then he shall carry the bull outside the camp
And burn it as he burned the first bull
It is a sin offering for the assembly
Yes, for the assembly as a whole
When a ruler has sinned
And done something unintentionally
Against any of the commandments of the Lord his God
In anything which should not be done, and is guilty
Or if his sin which he has committed
Comes to his knowledge, so he shall do
He shall bring as his offering a kid of the goats
A male without blemish, as I am instructing you
And he shall lay his hand
On the head of the goat, which is his proffering
And kill it at the place where the burnt offering is killed
Before the Lord. It is a sin offering
The priest shall take some of the blood
Of the sin offering with his finger, such is the case
Put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering
And pour its blood at the altar of burnt offering’s base
And he shall burn all its fat on the altar
Like the fat of the sacrifice of the peace offering
So the priest shall make atonement for him
And it shall be forgiven him, his sin concerning
If anyone of the common people
Sins unintentionally by doing something
Against any of the commandments of the Lord
Which ought not to be done, and is guilty in anything
Or if his sin which he has committed
Comes to his knowledge, so it is now admitted
Then he shall as his offering
A kid of the goats bring
A female without blemish, so shall it be
For his sin which he has committed against Me
And he shall his hand on the head of the sin offering lay
And kill the sin offering at the place of the burnt offering
As to you I now say
Then the priest shall take
Some of its blood with his finger, let this be the case
Put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering
And pour all the remaining blood at the altar’s base
He shall remove all its fat
As fat is removed from the sacrifice of the peace offering
And the priest shall burn it on the altar
For a sweet aroma to the Lord, an acceptable proffering
So the priest shall for him make atonement
And it shall be forgiven him without postponement
If he brings a lamb as his sin offering
He shall a female without blemish bring
Then he shall lay his hand on the head
Of the sin offering
And kill it as a sin offering, such the proffering
At the place where they kill the burnt offering
The priest shall take some of the blood
Of the sin offering with his finger, in this he shall not falter
Put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering
And pour all the remaining blood at the base of the altar
He shall remove all its fat
As the fat of the lamb is removed
From the sacrifice of the peace offering
This instruction is what I have approved
Then the priest shall burn it on the altar
According to the offerings made by fire to the Lord
So the priest shall make atonement for his sin
That he has committed, and it shall be forgiven him
——-According to this word
Our Lord Jesus died outside the walls of the city
He died there for the sins of all men on that day
God demonstrated His merciful pity
And in that crucified body, God has opened the way
We now can come home to Him once again
We are reconciled through what He alone has done
May we be willing to share this marvel with all men
That God has given us new life through His Son
Praises to God who has done this most marvelous thing for us!
All praises to God, through our glorious Lord Jesus!
Hallelujah and Amen…