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Sermon27 Lev1-7 Guide

Lev 1:1-9, recitation verse Lev 11:44-45

The praise and honor and glory be to our heavenly Father who seeks true worshipers who worship Him with the Spirit and truth.

During last few weeks, we learned that God instructed the Israelites how to live holy before God and how to worship God, by giving them ten commandments and statutes of Tabernacle after leading them to Sinai wilderness before Mount Sinai, delivering them who became a great nation of 2.5 M people while being suffered for 430 years. This week, we would like to learn more about the details of five offerings.

1) The theme of Leviticus is that His people should be holy as God is holy and thematic verse is Lev 11:44-45 “For I am the Lord your God. Consecrate yourselves therefore, and be holy, for I am holy. You shall not defile yourselves with any swarming thing that crawls on the ground. For I am the Lord who brought you up out of the land of Egypt to be your God. You shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.” And we can divide it chapter 1-7 which talks about holy offerings, chapter 8-10 and 21-22 which talks about holy priests, chapter 11-16 which teaches the uncleaness and it purification statutes and chapter 17-20 and 23-27 which talks about holy life.

2) Today’s text of chapter 1-7 is about the holy offerings. The five offerings which were commanded by God are the burnt offering, the grain offering, the peace offering, the sin offering, and the guilt offering or the trespass offering. The burnt offering was an offering that signifies complete dedication and devotion of Christians and was an offering in which the entire sacrifice of cattle, sheep, goat, or bird, was burned on the altar of burnt offering. It was based on the perfect sacrifice of Christ, and today it can be understood as a living sacrifice in which Christians offer their entire lives. The grain offering was an offering in which the worshippers offered grains such as raw grain flour, bread without yeast, or first fruits of grain in gratitude for God's provision and protection or as the pledge of loyalty, and it signifies the bread of life of Christ and the first fruits of resurrection of Christ. For Christians, It can be understood as a premise for pouring out everything, even life as Philippians 2:17 says. Peace offering was the offering which was offered with cattle, sheep or goats in gratitude, vows, or other voluntary offerings for reconciliation with God. They signify the reconciliation achieved by Christ, and can be seen as today's Holy Supper and Christians’ peace making ministry spreading God's peace. Regarding atonement, there were two offerings; sin offering and guilt offering. While the sin offering was for the atonement of sins committed unknowingly or unintentionally and refers to the atonement work of Christ, the guilt offering was mainly an offering offered when the sin affected people or property so that the compensation was needed. One-fifth of the amount of the damage or the loss must be added, and it can be understood that Christ endured the curse and suffering that are the result of sin. However, this sin offering was not for the offering for the intentional arime that required punishment for that crime. From a modern perspective, it can be understood to mean faith in the atonement of Jesus, confession and repentance of sin, and practice of forgiveness and reconciliation toward others. Ultimately, these five offerings fulfill our three spiritual needs, namely forgiveness and purification of sins, communion and fellowship with God, and devotion and commitment to God.

3) These five offerings can also be divided into fire offering, heave offering, wave offering, and drink offering, depending on the method of offering. The fire offering was an offering that burns on the altar, like a burnt offering as the pleasing aroma to the LORD. Wave offering refers to the offering which was offered to God after waving the sacrifice such as the breast of the peace offering, while heave offering was the offering which was lifted up to the LORD as if worshipper give to God the offering such as the first-fruits of the grain, or the tithe or the spoils. The drink offering was the offering that the wine was poured onto the sacrifice in the burnt offerings, grain offerings, or peace offerings, meaning to offer one's whole life to God.

4) We would like to look at more details of the process of each offering. First the burnt offering which offered of a male cattle, lamb, goat or birds, should prepare the blameless one year old male sacrifice and come before the LORD at the entrance of the tent of meeting. After laying hands on it for atonement, worshipper had to slaughter it, and the priest took the blood and splatter it against the sides of the altar. And then the worshipper skinned it and cut the offering in pieces, the head and the body which should be parted in pieces and washed entrails and legs while separating the fat to give them all to the priest. Then priest burnt them all on the altar. And the grain offering was an offering of fine flour, unleavened bread, or the first-fruit of grain. If it is fine flour, after pouring oil and putting frankincense on it, the worshipper had to bring it to the priest. The priest burned some of them with oil and frankincense on the altar as a memorial and the rest was used as food for the priests. All grain offerings must be seasoned with salt, but, not with yeast or honey. And for the peace offering of cattle, lamb or goats, the difference with the burnt offering was that male or female could be offered, and only the fat was burnt on the altar and the rest of the offering was shared by his family and friends after giving the breast to the priests as the wave offering and the right thigh to the priest who served as the heave offering. For the sin offering, the offering was different based on the social position, for instance, the priest and the entire assembly must offer a cattle without blemish, the leader of the tribe a goat without blemish, the citizens a ewe or a she-goat, and the poor a turtledove or a pigeon, or a tenth of an ephah of fine flour. After the fat was burned on the altar, the rest was brought to the clean place, the ash heap, outside the camp and burned on the wood. But, However, for the sin offering for Aaron and his sons, the offering was given to them for their food, instead of burning them outside the camp. Depending on the sins, the guilt offering offered 'a year old ram without blemish', 'two turtledoves or pigeons', 'three-tenths of an ephah of fine flour', or 'a log of oil', and the differences from the sin offering are that for the compensation of the loas, in addition to the loss, 1/5 of the loss was added, and that unlike the sin offering in which the sinner killed the offering and burned it by himself outside the camp, in the guilt offering, the priest had to slaughter the offering on his behalf, and eat the offering as well.

5) Through today's passage, we would like to learn few things. Firstly, in these five offerings, the blood was sprinkled on the altar and the fat was burned. The blood symbolized Christ's atonement death and the fat symbolized the Holy Spirit, meaning that all sacrifices were offered, based on the work of Christ and the Holy Spirit. Applying this to us today, even though we no longer need to offer the Old Testament sacrifices of slaughtering animals or grains and burning them on the altar of burnt offering, but we believe that we must always worship by relying on Christ, who is the Word, and the Holy Spirit during worship. That is why John 4:24 says, “God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in Spirit and truth.” Secondly, all five offerings had to be offered to God so that God would accept them. For this purpose, the worshipper had to first find a one-year-old sacrifice without blemish and offer it to the LORD at the entrance of the Tent of Meeting and also had to lay his hands on the head of the burnt offering for the atonement of himself and then the priest had to burn them all on the altar. But, I think this is very different from the worship we currently offer. I mean, even though we say that we offer the worship service to God, I think we are actually focusing on the grace of worship, whether it is the grace of the sermon or the grace of praise, we are focusing on the grace we receive through worship, not having interest on what and how to offer in worship. However, I believe that just as five offerings had to be offered to God and God was pleased, in the worship, we have to offer ourselves as the sacrifice to God to make Him pleased. Then, do we have to leave with empty hands after we worship? What do you think? Let us think more details on the offerings. I mean, in order to offer the offerings to God, worshipper had to experience the grace of God first. In other words, as the burnt offering was an offering in gratitude for God's holistic salvation, the grain offering was an offering in gratitude for God's provision and protection, and peace offering was an offering as the thanksgiving for God's grace or as a vow offering after he received God’s grace, always God’s grace came so the offering was offered in response to that grace. Even as the sin offering and guilt offering were offered when we, who have been saved by the full grace of God, have sinned against God or our neighbors, even if unknowingly, always God’s grace was advanced before the offering was offered. As such, after we find and recognize His pre-existing grace, we offer our worship service to God in thanksgiving and even sacrificing us and our lives to God. That’s why, Psalm 50:23 said, “Those who offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving glorifies me.” I pray that we may be worshippers who find His abundant grace in our lives and worship Him in gratitude to please God.

Key Questions as Small Group Activity

Q1 As we saw the details of the offerings which was offered in Old Testament era, we would review our worship service to check what we offer to God every week. I hope you can share your thought and idea for the worship with your team members.

Q2 If we could worship like that, wouldn’t we be able to leave the chapel and go out into the world looking forward to what kind of grace God will fill us with for the week? Even though there are challenges and difficulties in the world, when you hope to live a life in which we expect to have enough pre-existing grace that God prepared and gave us already, then think about such a life in which all the pre-existing grace is already abundant then think about how this change in perspective will also change our lives. I hope you can share your thoughts and ideas with your team members.

Love you. Thank you. God bless you.

Prayer Note

Dear ( God’s attribute which you found Today ) God!

Thanks for ( something you received through the sermon or even during the week )

Praise, gratitude and glory be to You, Lord!

Today, I realized my sin (pains) that ( the sin God reminded through the sermon ),

please forgive (or heal) me and help me not to repeat ( the sins you recognized ).

I learned that ( something you learned through the sermon )

Please help me to live in that ( learned way of life )

I pray in ( Jesus’ attribute you find ) Jesus’ name. Amen.


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