Summary: An outline from the first three chapters of the book of Leviticus on how to approach the Holy One.
The Way to the Holy One
By Dr. Fernando Cabrera
The book of Leviticus is a fascinating book. It is divided into two main sections. In chapters 1-10, we find the Way to the Holy One. In chapters 11-27, we find the Way of Holiness. In the first part we find a God who says, ¡§I am holy¡¨. In the second half, we find a God who says, ¡§therefore, you shall be holy¡¨.
But what is the way to the Holy One. We find the first answer to the question in chapters 1-7. We find in chapters 1-7 that the Way to the Holy One is through sacrifice. The second answer to the question is found in chapters 8-10. The Way to the Holy One is through the Priesthood. In chapter 1-7 we discover that these offering can be categorize into two groups:
„X The first three were offerings of dedication, while the last two were offering of expiation
„X The first three were Godward, while the last two were manward
Let us look at the first three offerings:
1. Burnt Offering (chapter 1)
a. It was the most common
i. It was offered every the morning and evening
ii. Since the burnt offering was the first offering of the day in normal worship, we are reminded that our forgiveness of our sins is the first step toward genuine and authentic worship
b. The word burnt offering means ¡§ascending¡¨, as ascending to God in smoke
c. What was dedicated in the Burnt Offering?
i. There were three types of animals which were sacrifice in the Burnt Offering
1. Cattle (1:6-9)
2. Sheep or Goats (1:10-13)
3. Birds (1:14-17)
a. Please take notice how organized this book was written. It follow a sequence, which made it easier to remember and follow.
d. How were the animals dedicated?
i. First the worshipper laid his hands on the head of the animal
1. Laying of hands symbolizes a ¡§transfer¡¨ (v.4)
a. It was symbolic of transferring his sins
b. The word ¡§lay¡¨ literally means ¡§to press¡¨ (see Is. 59:16, Ez. 24:5; Amos 5:19)
c. It is very possible that the worshipper would either pray or sing a psalm (Psalms 20:4, 40:7, 50:8). He would probably share with the priest why he brought the offering
i. Psalms 20 or 50 may have been the priestly reply indicating the acceptance of the sacrifice.
ii. The worshipper would then kill the animal himself (v.5)
1. The word ¡§slay¡¨ used in the passage is the Hebrew word shahat. It was a special word used for the type of sacrificial slaughter that involved the total draining of the blood.
iii. The blood was collected by the priest in a basin and sprinkle (v. 5) on the sides of the altar
1. The word ¡§sprinkle¡¨ was a word used of pouring liquids (Ex. 24:6)
iv. The worshipper would then skin it, gut it out and chop it (v.6)
1. the back of the legs (see 11:21) were cleansed from any excreta at the laver
v. The priest would then burn it piece by piece.
1. the skin would be the only thing not burnt
vi. Special treatment when it came to the sacrifice of birds
1. The bird would be split open so it could burn faster
a. But it was not completely divided into two
b. The word ¡§tear¡¨ in verse 17, is the same word used in Judges 14:6 to describe Samson tearing a lion