Finding Grace in Leviticus Menu

Finding Grace in Leviticus Menu

Leviticus is often referred to as one of the most boring books in the Bible. As Christians, we tend to skim over this book because we believe that the rituals no longer apply and so we couldn’t possibly learn anything new. But Leviticus is a book where God reveals His heart. He shows us how to meet his expectations of holiness and live life as He expects.

In Leviticus, we see numerous examples of God’s grace. Every sacrifice reveals a new aspect of God’s grace.  Explore this Bible study as we find grace in Leviticus.

Leviticus 1

Leviticus. It’s the book with all the blood in it; the one with all the sacrifices. “Why do I even need to know this?” You might ask. “After all, we don’t need to offer sacrifices anymore. What’s the point?” My friend, I will have to challenge you. Leviticus is not just a “bloody” book. It’s a story of God’s grace and his love for humanity.

For the next month or so we’re reading the book of Leviticus and we would like to share that journey with you. We would like to help you uncover the grace in Leviticus. Read more…

Leviticus 2

Leviticus 2 is all about the grain offering. The Israelite would make an offering of fine flour with oil, frankincense, and salt to God. The priest would take a handful and burn it on the altar and the rest would belong to the priest. This offering was given after the burnt offering.

But what did God want with flour anyway?

Nothing. He doesn’t need flour. Again, the sacrifice is all about the condition of the heart and what it costs the giver. God wants his people to give of their best. The burnt offering was one of thanksgiving. The giver got to decide whether it was cooked or uncooked and what quantity was offered. Read more…

Leviticus 3 - The Peace Offering

Leviticus 3

The peace offering was so the people could enjoy peace with God.

We enjoy peace with God when we give him our best (the fat) and our lives (the blood).

All the fat and blood belong to God. Just as we can never fully remove the fat and blood from our meat, so we will see the hand of God in everything.

Leviticus 3 is about the peace offering also known as the fellowship offering. The Israelite would make an offering of a lamb or a kid – it could be male or female. The giver would lay his hand on the head of the animal’s head before slaughtering it.

The offering had to be willingly given and should be of the best quality.

While it wasn’t a sin offering, it mimicked it in that the giver would always be reminded that as sinful human beings we are not worthy to come into the presence of God. Read more…

Leviticus 4 - The Sin Offering

Leviticus 4

The big points:

1) With a high position comes great responsibility. The sin one anointed priest required the same sacrifice as the sin of the whole congregation.

2) Sin destroys. The bull sacrificed for the priest and the whole body could not be eaten and had to be burnt like garbage.

3) Sin separates us from God. The sin offering required blood on the veil of the covenant. Without the covering blood, there could be no communion with God.

The first thing I love about this chapter is the sin offering wasn’t in the first or second chapter. Read more…

Leviticus 5 - The Sin & Trespass Offerings

Leviticus 5

The big points:

1) We should be careful about what we say. Swearing/making an oath carelessly could lead to sin as we say something at the moment, forget all about it and ultimately break our word (lie).

2) When we witness someone swearing we can become guilty by association. This shows that as Christians we have a role to play in ensuring (or at least encouraging) the people around us to live according to God’s precepts.

3) We can be guilty of sin and not know it. It’s important for us to ask forgiveness not only for sins known but also for sins unknown.

4) The sin offering could be paid by the poorest person (they could take as little as 1/10 of an ephah).  This was to show that forgiveness was available to all mankind and that it was not the sacrifice that wrought forgiveness. Read more…

Leviticus 6 - More on the Sin, Grain & Trespass Offerings

Leviticus 6

The big points:

Here we are given more on the burnt, trespass/guilt and sin offerings. In each case, we can see that God wants things done in a particular way. We also see that:

1) We must be blameless before our fellow man before we can be blameless before God. Forgive others before we can expect to receive forgiveness.

2) God provides for the people who he set apart to do his work. The priests didn’t own property yet they were fed and were able to give the necessary sacrifices before God. Jehovah-Nissi – wonderful provider! Read more…

Leviticus 7 - More on the Peace & Trespass Offerings

Leviticus 7

The big points:

1) The meat of the trespass belonged to the priest who offered the sacrifice and could be eaten by all male priests. The grain offering belonged to the priest who offered it and should be shared by all priests.

Again we see the provision of God for those he had set apart. We also see where he is building sharing into the fellowship of the priests.

2) Ceremonial purity was required before one could eat the meat of the sacrifices. A clean heart is a prerequisite for fellowship with a holy God.

3) Give God what belongs to him (blood, fat and the offerings that he requests). But do so knowing that God asks us for things not because he wants nor needs anything from us. Everything on earth including us belongs to him.

He asks for our sacrifices to test the condition of our hearts. Read more…

Leviticus 8 - The Consecration of Aaron & His Sons

Leviticus 8

The big points:

1) The priests were humbled before the congregation of the Israelites and before God. Can you imagine how these grown men must have felt to be bathed and dressed before thousands of people of both genders?

This reminds me of the baptismal service. It is a public acknowledgment before God and man.

2) They had robes put on them. These clothes were provided for them based on specifications set by God. This represented the righteousness of Christ.

3) The fellowship meal symbolized the relationship with God. It had to be individual, active, continual and fresh. Read more…

Leviticus 9

The big points:

1) The priestly ministry is officially handed over to Aaron and his sons.

2) After spending a week just sitting in the tabernacle the first thing they had to do was make a sin offering. This shows that no matter how perfect the animal sacrifice the blood of lambs cannot save.

3) The priest had to first make confession of his sin before making atonement for anyone.

The first thing you will notice about this chapter is that even though Aaron and his sons did nothing for 7 days in fellowship with God, the first thing they had to do was make a sin offering for themselves. This was a reminder that hey, the blood of animals only covers your sin for so long and no more. Read more…

Leviticus 10 - The Unholy Fire of Nadab & Abihu

Leviticus 10

The big points:

Aaron’s sons Nadab and Abihu offered “profane fire” before the Lord and were consumed by fire from heaven. From this account we learn a number of things:

1) God is holy and so before we come into His presence we must be sanctified. It is not enough to “come before God”; we must do so in the right manner.

2) When we mourn the people who have been judged by God, we should be careful that we don’t give the impression that God made a mistake.

3) Sometimes our identity in Christ takes precedence over our other identities. Aaron was not able to remove the bodies of his sons because doing so would have made him unclean and unable to perform his role as a priest before the people. Read more…

Leviticus 11 - God has a meal plan all written out for us, have you read it?

Leviticus 11

The big points:

1) The Law of clean versus unclean animals served to set the children of Israel apart. God required his people to act, eat and be different.

2) The dietary laws also served as health laws. They were restricted from eating that caused diseases.

3) The practice of ceremonial uncleanness also served to protect them from diseases.

**Fun fact: in 1350, when 25% of Europe died from the Black Death aka bubonic plague the Jewish communities were largely untouched because they practiced the Levitical laws.

God has laid down his laws: this is what you’re allowed to eat. He doesn’t explain why certain animals should not be eaten, only that they are unclean and should not be eaten. Read more…

Leviticus 12 - The Ritual After Childbirth

Leviticus 12

The big points:

1) Seclusion didn’t mean punishment. This was a time for mother and baby to bond. A time free of chores to heal and recover: Wilderness Maternity Leave.

2) Even a newborn baby needed to be covered under the blood. This shows the long-reaching effect of sin.

3) Babies are a gift from God.

4) The poor were allowed to take a lesser offering and still receive forgiveness and grace. Two turtledoves or two pigeons are all it took. We realize that Jesus’ parents were poor because of what they were able to offer. Read more…

Leviticus 13 & 14 - All About Leprosy

Leviticus 13 & 14

Leviticus 13 – The big points:

1) God is concerned with every area of our lives including our health.

Leviticus 14 – The big points:

1) God has a plan and everything he does is connected. There was no natural cure for leprosy at the time yet he put a purification ritual in place – waiting for the day when Jesus healed the leper. I have a new respect for the leper of Mark 1. He took a huge risk believing that Jesus could heal him.

Let’s talk about leprosy. Leviticus 13 & 14 go into great detail about how leprosy should be identified, what is to be done if you are not sure, what’s to be done if you are sure. Read more…

Leviticus 15 - Rules Concerning Bodily Discharges

Leviticus 15

The big points:

1) The discharge referred to in verses 2-13 appears to be a sickness. Ceremonial uncleanness protected others from contracting whatever the sickness was.

2) Semen and other discharges were not sinful. They only made a person ceremonially unclean.

3) God wanted us to separate worship from sex. Jehovah did not want to be worshiped as the heathen gods were.

Ceremonial uncleanness makes us temp unable to come to God but this is not our permanent state. Read more…

Finding Grace in Leviticus Menu

Leviticus 16 - The Day of Atonement

Leviticus 16

The big points:

1) The High Priest could only go into the Holy Place at God’s invitation and at a specific time.

2) Coming into God’s presence requires a change of garments. We have to put off our self-pride and put on humility.

3) When atonement was complete the priest emerged from the tabernacle in glory (the glory that came from God).

4) The Day of Atonement was repeated yearly showing that the sacrifices of man were unable to purify. Read more…

Leviticus 17 - The Sacredness of Blood

Leviticus 17

The big points:

1) Sacrifices must be done in the prescribed manner, at the designated place by the appointed priests. It couldn’t be done in any old way.

2) Even though the Israelites had worshipped idols (verse 7), God still showed them grace.

3) All blood aka life belongs to God and should be dedicated to him and him only.

All sacrifices were to be done by the priests. It was done longer acceptable for anyone else to sacrifice animals on their own behalf. God had set up a system and in order to receive atonement, they had to go through that path. Read more…

Leviticus 18 - The Laws of Sexual Morality

Leviticus 18

The big points:

1) God’s people are called to act differently. We are set apart and should behave that way by adhering to a higher standard.

2) A lot of the prohibitions that are in this chapter are played out in other parts of the Bible and we see their effects. In fact, we see them played out today where it has been proven that only bad things can come from them. First, homosexuality was legalized; then gay marriages. Now it’s okay to have sexual relations with an animal in Canada as long as there’s no penetration.

3) The laws of sexual morality are there for our protection.

4) A lot of the things that God prohibited were practiced by pagan nations to their detriment. God wanted to protect us from ourselves because He knew that opening the door to sin leads to even greater sin. Read more…

Leviticus 19 - The Moral & Ceremonial Laws

Leviticus 19

The big points:

1) Be holy because I am holy. The word translated as holy is qâdôsh which means ceremonially and morally sacred; inherently holy; set apart. This is more than just surface holiness – it goes soul deep.

2) God once again shows Himself concerned about every aspect of His people’s life. Isn’t it interesting though that He had to go into such detail? This confirms that the Israelites were chosen not because of good behavior but because God loved them.

3) Many of the instructions were to separate Israelites from hedonistic practices.

4) Love your neighbor as yourself. It’s about the heart. God desires His people to be set apart from the inside out. Read more…

Leviticus 20 - The Penalties for Breaking the Law

Leviticus 20

The big points:

1) God’s people were to separate themselves from the sin practiced by the nations around them.

2) Consecration is done by God but requires the participation of the one being sanctified.

3) All sexual sin is sin in the eyes of God.

4) In some cases judgment could only be carried out by God. This tells us that God is intimately concerned with our lives. Read more…

Leviticus 21  - Regulations for Conduct of Priests

Leviticus 21

The big points:

1) The priests of God are held to a higher standard. As people who are responsible for a nation, they had an important role to play.

2) Be holy for I am holy. There’s a lot of emphasis on sanctification as it relates to the priest and his family.

3) The reason for holiness: Yahweh is not like any other god and He deserves a level of holiness that idols don’t. Read more…

Leviticus 22  - More Instructions to the Priests

Leviticus 22

The big points:

1) Priests must take special precautions so that they are not defiled aka made ceremonially unclean. That meant that some things that were allowed for “ordinary folks” were not allowed for them such as eating an animal that died naturally.

2) God is holy so His earthly representatives had to be holy too.

3) Ceremonial uncleanness was temporary. Once the new day began at sundown, the priest was able to start the day with a clean slate. No matter how we mess up, God’s mercies are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness. Read more…

Leviticus 23  - The Feasts of the Lord

Leviticus 23

The big points:

This chapter was all about the feasts/festivals of the Lord. Interestingly enough it starts with a reminder to keep the Sabbath as a day of “solemn rest”. And no, that doesn’t mean serious sleeping (smile). It was more than it was to be characterized by deep sincerity.

During these times of feasting and celebration, the people were to remember what God had done for them at various points in their history.

1) The feasts were grouped in two sets: three in the first month (Nisan), one a little less than 4 months later in Av and three in the seventh month in Tishrei.

2) The gap between the set feast times would have been the harvest in Israel. Read more…

Leviticus 24  - The Tabernacle Lamp & The Egyptian Blasphemer

Leviticus 24

The big points:

1) Each tribe was represented before the Lord.

2) Everyone had to carry out God’s edict. The man’s actions didn’t only affect himself or God. He impacted the community. His sin affected them too.

3) God values human life above animal life. Hence the death of a human carries a greater sentence.

4) Justice must fit the crime. Telling the Israelites “an eye for an eye” wasn’t a literal statement. Rather it was saying if we get a scratch from someone we can’t amputate his arm in retaliation. Read more…

Leviticus 25  - The Sabbath of the Land & the Year of Jubilee

Leviticus 25

The big points:

1) Rest is important to God. Even the land had to keep its Sabbath.

2) The Sabbath year was a time to be reacquainted with God’s laws.

3) Most things that were lost through debt could be redeemed in the year of Jubilee.

4) The kinsman a redeemer was a type of Christ – a distant relative of King David who came to redeem every Israelite (and all sinners) from sin. Read more…

Leviticus 26  - Blessings & Curses

Leviticus 26

The big points:

1) There were many blessings for being faithful to Jehovah. They would have rain in due season, crops aplenty and victory in the battle to name a few.

2) The best thing about obedience was that God would dwell among them and be their God.

3) Disobedience had a set of curses – drought, famine, cannibalism, exile, servitude… The curses got greater the longer the Israelites refused to obey God.

4) God does not say that He would forsake them or choose another people. He would punish them, but they were still His. Read more…

Leviticus 27  - Dedicating Things & People to God

Leviticus 27

The big points:

1) God had chosen the Levis to be His priests but He still made a way for persons in other tribes to dedicate their lives to Him.

2) Being consecrated to God could not be used as a “get out of death free” card.

3) The rich man and the poor man had the same value to God.

4) The priests were called to a great work and needed to have a variety of skills. They were public health inspectors, butchers, accountants and assessors to name a few.

The Israelites were God’s people. He declared it. But it was the Levi tribe that was consecrated to minister to God. Read more…