Friday, February 5, 2010

Weekly Recap #5 - Exodus 34 - Leviticus 15

Well, we finished up Exodus this week and got into the book of Leviticus. 
If I told you that I understood....and will remember....everything I read in the book of Leviticus....well, it wouldn't be the truth.  Leviticus has been very difficult for me, even reading from the New Living Translation. 

Let's see where we left off last week....oh, yeah....Moses had gone back up on Mt. Sinai....

~~~Moses chiseled 2 more stone tablets to replace the ones he broke and he climbed Mt. Sinai for the Lord to write the commandments on them.  When Moses came down from the mountain, his face reflected the glory of God (oh, how I wish that could be said of me)....because He had been in the presence of the Lord!!!!!

~~~Moses asked the people to bring sacred offerings to the Lord and for those with generous hearts to offer specific gifts.  He asked for craftsmen to construct certain objects for the Tabernacle.  All those whose hearts were stirred and whose spirits were moved came and brought their sacred offerings to the Lord.  As I read this, I could just imagine the excitement going thru the hearts and minds of the people....I'm sure they couldn't wait to see what the new Tabernacle and all its furnishings were going to look like.  Both men and women came, especially women who were skilled in sewing and spinning!!!  I liked that the scriptures specifically pointed out that God could use women, too!!!

~~~Bezalel oversaw the craftsmen and seamstresses as they made everything according to the Lord's instructions.  Moses inspected all the work and saw that it was just as the Lord had directed and he blessed them and their work!!!  After the Tabernacle was set up as the Lord had instructed with all its furnishings, the cloud they had been following  settled over the entrance and the glory of the Lord filled the Tabernacle.  Moses could no longer enter the Tabernacle.  Whenever the cloud lifted, the people would set out on their journey following it.  If the cloud didn't move, they stayed put.  The cloud hovered over the Tabernacle by day and at night fire glowed inside the cloud so it could be seen by all the families of Israel!! we've finished up Exodus....and we're on to Leviticus.  The book of Leviticus is actually worship instructions for God's Chosen People....the Hebrew nation.  Since the priests (Aaron and his sons)....were from the tribe of Levi....and it was up to the priests to offer the sacrifices for the people....hence the name "Leviticus". 
One thing that I read that I REALLY liked was the overall theme of the book of Leviticus was summed up in chapter 11, verse 45:

 For I, the Lord, am the one who brought you up from the land of Egypt, that I might be your God. Therefore, you must be holy because I am holy. order for God's chosen children to be "holy"....they had to obey His laws and commandments.   The people were instructed to bring  many types of sacrifices, or offerings, to God...burnt offerings, grain offerings, peace offerings, sin offerings, and guilt offerings.  These gifts showed loyalty and devotion to God.
.....a blood offering....when the blood of a sacrificed animal was went beyond just a gift.  It was a symbol of the person offering his own life to God. 
The Hebrews believed that "the life of the flesh is in the blood". 

Isn't this a wonderful reminder of what Jesus did for us when He shed His blood....once and for all, doing away with the need to sacrifice an animal, or take our sins to a priest?  The blood of bulls and goats and sheep and pigeons....they held no power to take away sin, it was part of the ritual they were to practice.  This was "a shadow of the good things to come" .(Hebrews 10:1). 
All these things pointed forward to God's ultimate sacrifice, given freely on our behalf.
"So Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many"
(Hebrews 9:28)

A few things that stuck out to me were:
***When the animals were sacrificed, the kidneys and liver were burned on the altar.  The kidneys were considered organs of understanding, like we think about the brain.  The liver represented life and vitality, sort of how we see our heart.
***The fire on the altar had to be kept burning at ALL could never be allowed to go out.
***When Moses dressed Aaron and his sons in their priestly robes....I imagined being in the crowd watching.  Can you just imagine the excitement and what a sacred, holy ceremony it was?  I also wondered how nervous Aaron was thinking about all the rules and procedures and step-by-step instructions they had to remember and follow!!!
***Part of the ceremony included Moses dipping his finger into the blood of the animal that was sacrificed and putting blood on the priests ear lobes, right thumb, and the big toe of the right foot.  This was kind of confusing until I did a bit of research.  The symbolism of the blood on the ear lobe meant that to truly serve God, we must be able to hear His word. The blood on the right thumb represented the hands....used to serve the people and the Lord, to undertake His work.  The blood on the right big toe was used to ordain the feet of the priest to take him where he needed to go...and to move at His command.
***Aaron's sons, Nadab and Abihu were also priests, but they didn't follow God's commandment regarding the use of the fire in their censers, or incense burners.  Since they disobeyed, the Lord sent fire and burnt them both up.  Moses explained to Aaron that this is what the Lord meant when He said, "I will show my Holiness thru those who come near me.  I will display my glory before all people".
And....Aaron was silent.
When I read this....I thought of a couple of things;
1)  First of all....I'm so thankful that God doesn't send fire to consume me when I disobey Him, and
2) Being burnt up was what I deserve for my sins, but Jesus' death on the cross took care of that for me!!!
So...that's it for this week's recap!!!
Hope those of you who are "reading the Bible in a year" are enjoying it, too.  I would love to hear from you as to what you're learning and gleaning from the word of God!!!
Blessings to you!!!
In His Most Precious Love....and with mine!!!

1 comment:

  1. I just love reading/writing about our recaps. To see how the Lord shows us different things is so amazing. I'm with you on Leviticusas being difficult even with me using the NIV. I think even using the Message is hard for I reread some of Exodus and my brain just went HUH? Good blog love ya!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Kind words are like honey—
sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.
Proverbs 16:24