Friday, February 7
Once for all
Scripture: Leviticus 4-6, Acts 14
Leviticus 4:28–29 When they become aware of their sin, they must bring as an offering for their sin a female goat with no defects. 29 They must lay a hand on the head of the sin offering and slaughter it at the place where burnt offerings are slaughtered.
Leviticus describes the elaborate Jewish sacrificial system. In the verses above, when common people sinned and became aware of their sin, they were to bring a female goat for sacrifice, lay their hands on its head (thus transferring their guilt to the animal), and then slaughtering it. It was a bloody reminder that the penalty for sin is death, and to avoid that death, something (or Someone) died in your place.
I wonder how often a common person offered this sacrifice. There is hardly a day when I’m not aware of my sin either in thought, word or deed. I would be going to the priest every day, slaughtering multiple animals! I wonder if they only did this for larger sins, or if they did it weekly or monthly. I can’t imagine doing it daily!
This makes me so grateful for Jesus and helps me understand the book of Hebrews, where the author emphasizes that Jesus has sacrificed Himself “once for all.” Once for all people, all sin, all time.
Hebrews 7:27 Unlike those other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices every day. They did this for their own sins first and then for the sins of the people. But Jesus did this once for all when he offered himself as the sacrifice for the people’s sins.
See also Hebrews 9:12, 26, 10:2, 10.
Rather than running to the priest to sacrifice an animal every time I sin, I simply go directly to God and confess my sin, knowing that Jesus has already died for it so I can be forgiven.
1 John 1:9 But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness.
I’m so glad I live under the new covenant that Jesus instituted with His death and resurrection! I’m fully forgiven and free!
Prayer: Thank you Jesus for making our sacrifice once for all!