Leviticus 15-16

Thursday Evening Bible Study

November 5, 2009


Leviticus is an instruction manual for the Levite priests.

The main theme is “Holiness”

(Lev 19:2 NKJV) …'You shall be holy, for I the LORD your God am holy.

Last week I shared with you an exciting archaeological discovery, an ancient manuscript that brings more to light on the subject of clean and unclean.  It is the ancient text known as: DeuteroMommy.  More of this important text has been translated…

On Screaming

Do not scream; for it is as if you scream all the time. If you are given a plate on which two foods you do not wish to touch each other are touching each other, your voice rises up even to the ceiling, while you point to the offense with the finger of your right hand; but I say to you, scream not, only remonstrate gently with the server, that the server may correct the fault. Likewise if you receive a portion of fish from which every piece of herbal seasoning has not been scraped off, and the herbal seasoning is loathsome to you and steeped in vileness, again I say, refrain from screaming. Though the vileness overwhelm you, and cause you a faint unto death, make not that sound from within your throat, neither cover your face, nor press your fingers to your nose. For even not I have made the fish as it should be; behold, I eat it myself, yet do not die.

If we’re not careful, we can take the book of Leviticus in a bit too lighthearted approach, like the book of “DeuteroMommy”.  Some of the stuff we’ll be looking at tonight might get a little lighthearted.  In reality there is some pretty serious stuff here.

Keep in mind that these last couple of chapters have been dealing with the subject of “clean and unclean”, and it all started when the priests first started their work and ran into a little bit of trouble.

Two priests,  Nadab and Abihu, had been just a wee bit drunk.  As a result, they did something stupid, offering something to God that He didn’t want.  They died. God pulled Aaron aside and told him that priests should not be drinking and ministering at the same time …

(Lev 10:10-11 NKJV)  "that you may distinguish between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean, {11} "and that you may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the LORD has spoken to them by the hand of Moses."

God’s desire is that we be able tell the difference, to tell between what is holy and what is unholy.  He wants us to be able to tell what things are pleasing to God.

Leviticus 15

15:1-12 Unclean male discharge

:1 And the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying,

:2 "Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: 'When any man has a discharge from his body, his discharge is unclean.

:2 dischargezuwb – to flow, gush, issue

This is a flow of certain kinds of bodily fluids from a person’s body.

It could be diarrhea or gonorrhea.
It could be blood, puss, or semen.

The TV show “Monk” is about a fellow who is an obsessive/compulsive disorder, and one of the funny things is about how he is always cleaning everything – he can’t stand anything dirty. Play “Monk Intro” clip. 

When I think of a “discharge”, I think of that sewer pipe spewing brown water all over Mr. Monk.  It’s disgusting.  It’s unclean.

As we’ll see, there are four categories of “discharges

There’s the long-term male discharge, unclean and requiring a sacrifice.

There’s a short-term male sexual discharge, unclean, but no sacrifice required.

There’s a short-term female natural discharge, unclean, but no sacrifice required.

There’s a long-term female discharge, unclean and requiring a sacrifice.

Though there are some lessons in these areas of “uncleanness” as issues of personal hygiene, the actual concern has to do with ceremonial uncleanness.

Those who were unclean were not to be participating in the worship of the tabernacle.

:3 'And this shall be his uncleanness in regard to his discharge; whether his body runs with his discharge, or his body is stopped up by his discharge, it is his uncleanness.

:4 'Every bed is unclean on which he who has the discharge lies, and everything on which he sits shall be unclean.

It seems to us as if this “uncleanness” was contagious.

Though we think in terms of spreading disease, don’t forget that there is also a type of ceremonial uncleanness that is continually hinted at.

:5 'And whoever touches his bed shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

:6 'He who sits on anything on which he who has the discharge sat shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

:7 'And he who touches the body of him who has the discharge shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

:8 'If he who has the discharge spits on him who is clean, then he shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

How’s that for getting even with someone you don’t like!

Spit on them and they can’t go to church!

:9 'Any saddle on which he who has the discharge rides shall be unclean.

:10 'Whoever touches anything that was under him shall be unclean until evening. He who carries any of those things shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

:11 'And whomever the one who has the discharge touches, and has not rinsed his hands in water, he shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

:12 'The vessel of earth that he who has the discharge touches shall be broken, and every vessel of wood shall be rinsed in water.

15:13-15 Offering for male discharge

When a person with this prolonged “discharge” becomes better, there was a ritual to restore them to worship at the Tabernacle.

:13 'And when he who has a discharge is cleansed of his discharge, then he shall count for himself seven days for his cleansing, wash his clothes, and bathe his body in running water; then he shall be clean.

:14 'On the eighth day he shall take for himself two turtledoves or two young pigeons, and come before the LORD, to the door of the tabernacle of meeting, and give them to the priest.

:15 'Then the priest shall offer them, the one as a sin offering and the other as a burnt offering. So the priest shall make atonement for him before the LORD because of his discharge.

I don’t think that the sin offering was because the person was sinful by becoming sick.

The point is that a person with a prolonged disease has missed a lot of opportunities to worship and offer sin offerings.

We all sin, and if we haven’t confessed our sin for some time, it’s probably likely that we need to be doing that.

15:16-18 Semen discharge

:16 'If any man has an emission of semen, then he shall wash all his body in water, and be unclean until evening.

:17 'And any garment and any leather on which there is semen, it shall be washed with water, and be unclean until evening.

:18 'Also, when a woman lies with a man, and there is an emission of semen, they shall bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

There are several ways that a man might end up “emitting semen”.  Keep in mind that sex outside of marriage is a sin.

Is sex inside marriage a “bad” thing?  Be careful with this.

Keep in mind that there won’t be a sin offering required as with other “discharges”.

God was the one who commanded man to be fruitful and multiply.  God was the one that said it was not good for man to be alone.

The writer of Hebrews states:

(Heb 13:4 NKJV)  Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled; but fornicators and adulterers God will judge.

But there can be times when even the marriage bed can be perverted.

For example, a man might fill his mind with pornographic images, and then want to fulfill those fantasies in bed with his wife.

Warren Wiersbe writes: “Perhaps the Lord is telling us that, even in a beautiful experience like married love, there is opportunity for our sinful nature to go to work to defile it.  The Jewish couple had to consider God as well as their own desires, and this helped sanctify their relationship.”

15:19-24 Menstrual discharge

:19 'If a woman has a discharge, and the discharge from her body is blood, she shall be set apart seven days; and whoever touches her shall be unclean until evening.

This is talking about a woman’s regular menstrual period.

This being a natural kind of issue, there was no sacrifice for sin required.

:20 'Everything that she lies on during her impurity shall be unclean; also everything that she sits on shall be unclean.

:21 'Whoever touches her bed shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

:22 'And whoever touches anything that she sat on shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

:23 'If anything is on her bed or on anything on which she sits, when he touches it, he shall be unclean until evening.

:24 'And if any man lies with her at all, so that her impurity is on him, he shall be unclean seven days; and every bed on which he lies shall be unclean.

Probably the sense here is that the man was unaware of his wife’s period, had sex, then he was to be unclean for seven days.

This is in contrast to a man who knowingly lay with his wife during her period, in which the man was to be cut off from the people (Lev. 20:18)


“During the time of her period and for a week afterward, a woman was unclean and had to be careful where she sat and slept and what she touched. But this confinement was a blessing in disguise since it allowed her to enjoy rest and quiet when she needed it most. If her husband was too aggressive sexually, this law kept him from taking advantage of her at a time when intercourse wouldn’t be especially pleasant to her. If he forced himself on her, both he and the marriage bed would be unclean for a week, and this would separate him from everybody in the family and the camp! It wasn’t worth it.”

“Certainly God created sex for pleasure as well as for procreation, but pleasure that isn’t disciplined soon becomes bondage and then torture. Unmarried people must exercise self-control lest they commit fornication and invite the judgment of God (Heb. 13:4), but married people also need self-control lest they take advantage of one another and leave God out of their most intimate relationship. God created sex, and wise is the person who permits the Creator to make the rules.”

15:25-27 Lengthy bloody discharge

:25 'If a woman has a discharge of blood for many days, other than at the time of her customary impurity, or if it runs beyond her usual time of impurity, all the days of her unclean discharge shall be as the days of her customary impurity. She shall be unclean.

:26 'Every bed on which she lies all the days of her discharge shall be to her as the bed of her impurity; and whatever she sits on shall be unclean, as the uncleanness of her impurity.

:27 'Whoever touches those things shall be unclean; he shall wash his clothes and bathe in water, and be unclean until evening.

This is when a woman’s discharge continued on and on, like that described at the beginning of the chapter with a man.

Here, like the first kind of issue for men, a woman was required to give a sin offering, most likely because she had been “unclean” and unavailable for worship for so long.

15:28-30 Offering for woman’s discharge

A woman who had been cleansed would bring the same kind of an offering that a man would bring when he was cleansed.

:28 'But if she is cleansed of her discharge, then she shall count for herself seven days, and after that she shall be clean.

:29 'And on the eighth day she shall take for herself two turtledoves or two young pigeons, and bring them to the priest, to the door of the tabernacle of meeting.

:30 'Then the priest shall offer the one as a sin offering and the other as a burnt offering, and the priest shall make atonement for her before the LORD for the discharge of her uncleanness.

15:31-33 Discharge summary

:31 'Thus you shall separate the children of Israel from their uncleanness, lest they die in their uncleanness when they defile My tabernacle that is among them.

:32 'This is the law for one who has a discharge, and for him who emits semen and is unclean thereby,

:33 'and for her who is indisposed because of her customary impurity, and for one who has a discharge, either man or woman, and for him who lies with her who is unclean.'"

Here’s the reason for the laws –

To keep the people from dying by defiling the Tabernacle

Nadab and Abihu had died when they offered “strange fire” (Lev. 9).
It’s important that the whole nation understand the holiness and purity of God.
I wonder if there isn’t another hint here as to the death of Nadab and Abihu and the mystery of the “strange fire” that they offered?
God warned Aaron and his descendants not to drink alcohol lest they go into the tabernacle and die.  This was tied to being able to discern between holy and unholy, clean and unclean, as well as being able to teach about these things. (Lev. 10:9-11)
(Lev 10:9-11 NKJV)  "Do not drink wine or intoxicating drink, you, nor your sons with you, when you go into the tabernacle of meeting, lest you die. It shall be a statute forever throughout your generations, {10} "that you may distinguish between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean, {11} "and that you may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the LORD has spoken to them by the hand of Moses."

Perhaps there was something about it that fell into the category of “unclean”, something that brought defilement into the Tabernacle.


Clean Living

What can we apply from these principles about clean/unclean?

1.  Recognize what’s unclean

The priests were to be sober enough to be able to discern what was “unclean”.
We know we are to clearly avoid things we could label as "sin".
There are definite things that God wants us to avoid.
There are also areas that not black and white.  They are kind of gray.  There are some things that are okay for some people but not okay for others.  One of these issues in Paul’s day had to do with the kinds of food you might eat.
(Rom 14:13-15 NKJV)  Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother's way. {14} I know and am convinced by the Lord Jesus that there is nothing unclean of itself; but to him who considers anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean.
Some people can drink an alcoholic drink, and it’s okay.  The Scripture doesn’t condemn drinking, it condemns drunkenness.  Others can’t take a single sip because they will be unable to stop.
I need to recognize what things are NOT okay for me.
I think that some people can see a certain movie and be okay, while others may be stumbled by watching the same movie.

If I’m going to be honest though, I’m pretty narrow minded on this, because if you watch a movie that I don’t think I can, I’m convinced that you’re sinning.  I can get pretty judgmental.

{15} Yet if your brother is grieved because of your food, you are no longer walking in love. Do not destroy with your food the one for whom Christ died.
The second part of recognizing what is “unclean” is not just to recognize what is “unclean” for you, but to also recognize what is “unclean” for those people around you, the people who know you and watch you.
Sometimes we need to limit our own freedom in order to keep others from stumbling.  Do we recognize this?

2.  Avoid uncleanness

“Uncleanness” is contagious.
What you associate with, affects you.
(Gal 6:7-8 NKJV)  Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. {8} For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.
You can’t keep carelessly exposing yourself to unclean things without some eventual repercussion.

If I watch a lusty movie, guess what kind of thoughts I have...

3.  Like a doctor

A doctor is constantly being exposed to things that can make a person sick.  But they do it in order to bring healing to others.
While we need to be careful that we don’t defile ourselves, there’s a balance we need to have, to realize that God wants us to reach out to unclean people.
When Jesus was rebuked for reaching out to sinners, He said,

(Mat 9:12 NKJV)  …"Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick.

Look at how Jesus deals with a problem that fits in our chapter.
(Mark 5:25-34 NKJV)  Now a certain woman had a flow of blood for twelve years, {26} and had suffered many things from many physicians. She had spent all that she had and was no better, but rather grew worse.
Can you place this woman within Leviticus 15?  She is a woman with a flow of blood that lasted longer than her menstrual period.  She is “unclean”.  She has been unable to go to church for twelve years.
{27} When she heard about Jesus, she came behind Him in the crowd and touched His garment. {28} For she said, "If only I may touch His clothes, I shall be made well."
She is being a bad girl.  She might be technically accused of trying to make Jesus unclean by touching His clothes.  But she has this idea that instead of her making Him unclean, He will heal her.
{29} Immediately the fountain of her blood was dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of the affliction. {30} And Jesus, immediately knowing in Himself that power had gone out of Him, turned around in the crowd and said, "Who touched My clothes?" {31} But His disciples said to Him, "You see the multitude thronging You, and You say, 'Who touched Me?'" {32} And He looked around to see her who had done this thing. {33} But the woman, fearing and trembling, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell down before Him and told Him the whole truth. {34} And He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be healed of your affliction."
Jesus was not afraid to touch or be touched by unclean people.
Instead of “catching” their uncleanness, He made them clean.
You may be feeling like you’re pretty unclean at times. He can make you clean.

Leviticus 16 – Yom Kippur

:1 Now the LORD spoke to Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron, when they offered profane fire before the LORD, and died;

We are now going to get the description of Yom Kippur, the “Day of Atonement”.

If you are paying attention, you note that just like the previous chapters, this too was tied to the event when Aaron’s sons died.

God is going to reinforce the concept that He is holy.

This is going to mean that the people aren’t going to be able to come into His presence whenever they want.  Only the High Priest would be allowed, and only once a year, and only after carefully performing sacrifices designed to take away sin.

:2 and the LORD said to Moses: "Tell Aaron your brother not to come at just any time into the Holy Place inside the veil, before the mercy seat which is on the ark, lest he die; for I will appear in the cloud above the mercy seat.

:3 "Thus Aaron shall come into the Holy Place: with the blood of a young bull as a sin offering, and of a ram as a burnt offering.

These two offerings would be for Aaron, the high priest.

:4 "He shall put the holy linen tunic and the linen trousers on his body; he shall be girded with a linen sash, and with the linen turban he shall be attired. These are holy garments. Therefore he shall wash his body in water, and put them on.

There is a dress code for this special day.  What’s interesting is to note the things that are missing.

He is not wearing his flowing purple robes, the ephod, the breastpiece, the crown, the Urim and Thummim.

There is a note of simplicity here.  Nothing fancy, just simple linen clothing.

The priest is not entering into God’s presence as a fancy prince, but as a humble servant.

This is a time for dealing with sin, and you can’t hide sin in fancy clothes.


Cleansing requires humility and honesty.

God is not impressed by fancy things, when you come to Him, He sees right through all the stuff you hide behind.
You can’t hide behind your ministry, your accomplishments, or a pretty façade.
It’s just you and God.
We don’t approach God with all our accomplishments as if that’s going to impress Him.
God sees us for who we really are.  It’s important that we learn to see ourselves in the same way.
(Heb 4:13 NKJV)  And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.

:5 "And he shall take from the congregation of the children of Israel two kids of the goats as a sin offering, and one ram as a burnt offering.

These goats and ram will be for the people.

:6 "Aaron shall offer the bull as a sin offering, which is for himself, and make atonement for himself and for his house.

:7 "He shall take the two goats and present them before the LORD at the door of the tabernacle of meeting.

:8 "Then Aaron shall cast lots for the two goats: one lot for the LORD and the other lot for the scapegoat.

:9 "And Aaron shall bring the goat on which the Lord's lot fell, and offer it as a sin offering.

:9 lots – kind of like drawing straws.  The goat that was chosen to be the Lord’s goat was the one that would be sacrificed.

:10 "But the goat on which the lot fell to be the scapegoat shall be presented alive before the LORD, to make atonement upon it, and to let it go as the scapegoat into the wilderness.

:11 "And Aaron shall bring the bull of the sin offering, which is for himself, and make atonement for himself and for his house, and shall kill the bull as the sin offering which is for himself.

:11 for himself – Before the priest takes care of others, he is to take care of his own sin.


Ministry begins with me

(2 Tim 2:21 NKJV)  Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.
There a sense where we are more useful to the Lord if we allow Him to fully cleanse us.
I think the picture of a “vessel” is a good one.  Sometimes we’re like a dirty old milk container, trying to pass on clean water to others.  Yuck!  Wash the container out first!  So they taste nothing but what you contain.  None of you.

A pastor was asked to dinner by one of the folks in his church who he knew was a bad housekeeper. When he sat down at the table, he noticed that the dishes were the dirtiest that he had ever seen in his life. “Were these dishes ever washed?” he asked his hostess, running his fingers over the grit and grime. She replied, “They’re as clean as soap and water could get them”. He felt a bit apprehensive, but blessed the food anyway and started eating. It was really delicious and he said so, despite the dirty dishes. When dinner was over, the hostess took the dishes outside and yelled, “Here Soap! Here Water!”

Paul wrote to the Galatians telling them how to help others caught in sin:
(Gal 6:1 NKJV)  Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.

Considering yourself” includes making sure you are clean, making sure that you aren’t going to jump into the same temptation.

If you aren’t aware of your own tendency to sin, you will not be “gentle” with those who are caught in a sin.

It’s learning to remove the log from my own eye (Mat. 7:5) before I try to get a splinter out of my friend’s eye.

:12 "Then he shall take a censer full of burning coals of fire from the altar before the LORD, with his hands full of sweet incense beaten fine, and bring it inside the veil.

:13 "And he shall put the incense on the fire before the LORD, that the cloud of incense may cover the mercy seat that is on the Testimony, lest he die.

One commentary called this a “smoke screen” (BKC) to keep the priest from seeing the Shekinah glory of the Lord, and kept him from dying because of it.

It wasn't to hide Aaron from the Lord, but to keep Aaron from seeing God's glory.

:14 "He shall take some of the blood of the bull and sprinkle it with his finger on the mercy seat on the east side; and before the mercy seat he shall sprinkle some of the blood with his finger seven times.

:15 "Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering, which is for the people, bring its blood inside the veil, do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat and before the mercy seat.

:15 the mercy seat – this was the solid gold lid to the Ark of the Covenant, meant to be a picture of the throne of God.

The mercy seat was the place of “propitiation”, a place where sins were covered, where they were washed away.

(1 John 2:1-2 NKJV)  My little children, these things I write to you, so that you may not sin. And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. {2} And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the whole world.
Your sins have been taken care of by Jesus' death on the cross.  Once and for all.

This whole ritual was to prepare the way for a complete atoning, through Jesus Christ.

(Heb 9:23-26 NKJV)  Therefore it was necessary that the copies of the things in the heavens should be purified with these, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.

The Tabernacle was simply a model, a “copy” of heaven.  The earthly Tabernacle was purified through this ritual on the Day of Atonement.
The real thing, heaven, would be purified with a better sacrifice.

{24} For Christ has not entered the holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us; {25} not that He should offer Himself often, as the high priest enters the Most Holy Place every year with blood of another; {26} He then would have had to suffer often since the foundation of the world; but now, once at the end of the ages, He has appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.

The high priest repeated this ritual every year.
Jesus only had to do it once.

:16 "So he shall make atonement for the Holy Place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions, for all their sins; and so he shall do for the tabernacle of meeting which remains among them in the midst of their uncleanness.

Note the use again of “uncleanness”.

:16 atonement - kaphar - to cover, purge; to ransom, to remove by paying a price.

This is one of the pictures of how God deals with our sins.

This is all paving the way for our Savior, who would pay the price for our sins by dying on a cross in our place.

:17 "There shall be no man in the tabernacle of meeting when he goes in to make atonement in the Holy Place, until he comes out, that he may make atonement for himself, for his household, and for all the assembly of Israel.

Aaron was to do this alone, they were not to risk having a second individual be in the tabernacle who had not dealt with his own sin.

:18 "And he shall go out to the altar that is before the LORD, and make atonement for it, and shall take some of the blood of the bull and some of the blood of the goat, and put it on the horns of the altar all around.

:19 "Then he shall sprinkle some of the blood on it with his finger seven times, cleanse it, and consecrate it from the uncleanness of the children of Israel.

:20 "And when he has made an end of atoning for the Holy Place, the tabernacle of meeting, and the altar, he shall bring the live goat.

:21 "Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, confess over it all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions, concerning all their sins, putting them on the head of the goat, and shall send it away into the wilderness by the hand of a suitable man.

:22 "The goat shall bear on itself all their iniquities to an uninhabited land; and he shall release the goat in the wilderness.

With the sin offerings, we saw the sins of an individual being transferred to an animal, which was slain.  Then when the priest ate a portion of that animal, the priest “bore” the sins.

Now we see the sins being put on a goat and then sent off into the wilderness.

scapegoat‘aza’zel – means a “goat + go away”, or, “goat of removal”.

This is the origin of where we get the term “scapegoat”

It’s the person who gets blamed for things he didn’t do.  “You’re just making me the scapegoat”.

The ultimate “scapegoat” - Jesus

(Isa 53:5 NKJV)  But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities; The chastisement for our peace was upon Him, And by His stripes we are healed.

This offers us a different slant on how God takes care of our sins.  He not only covers our sins, He not only pays for the penalty of our sins, but He totally removes our sin.

The blood atoned for the sin before God, the scapegoat removed the sin from the people.

(Psa 103:12 NKJV)  As far as the east is from the west, So far has He removed our transgressions from us.

(Micah 7:19 NKJV)  He will again have compassion on us, And will subdue our iniquities. You will cast all our sins Into the depths of the sea.

:23 "Then Aaron shall come into the tabernacle of meeting, shall take off the linen garments which he put on when he went into the Holy Place, and shall leave them there.

:24 "And he shall wash his body with water in a holy place, put on his garments, come out and offer his burnt offering and the burnt offering of the people, and make atonement for himself and for the people.

:25 "The fat of the sin offering he shall burn on the altar.

:26 "And he who released the goat as the scapegoat shall wash his clothes and bathe his body in water, and afterward he may come into the camp.

:27 "The bull for the sin offering and the goat for the sin offering, whose blood was brought in to make atonement in the Holy Place, shall be carried outside the camp. And they shall burn in the fire their skins, their flesh, and their offal.

No flesh was eaten from these sacrifices because their blood had been sprinkled in the Holy Place. (Lev. 6:30)

(Lev 6:30 NKJV)  'But no sin offering from which any of the blood is brought into the tabernacle of meeting, to make atonement in the holy place, shall be eaten. It shall be burned in the fire.

:28 "Then he who burns them shall wash his clothes and bathe his body in water, and afterward he may come into the camp.

:29 "This shall be a statute forever for you: In the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, you shall afflict your souls, and do no work at all, whether a native of your own country or a stranger who dwells among you.

This is the holiday known as Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.

This year it was celebrated on September 27.

:29 afflict – The Jews have taken this to mean a day of fasting.

:30 "For on that day the priest shall make atonement for you, to cleanse you, that you may be clean from all your sins before the LORD.

Today, for the Jew, it is a day of reflection, thinking about all the bad things you’ve done and all the good things you’ve done.  Hopefully the good outweighs the bad.

Sadly, the Bible doesn't say that we can atone for our sins with good works, but our sins can only be atoned with blood.

(Heb 9:22 NKJV)  And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.

:31 "It is a sabbath of solemn rest for you, and you shall afflict your souls. It is a statute forever.

:32 "And the priest, who is anointed and consecrated to minister as priest in his father's place, shall make atonement, and put on the linen clothes, the holy garments;

:33 "then he shall make atonement for the Holy Sanctuary, and he shall make atonement for the tabernacle of meeting and for the altar, and he shall make atonement for the priests and for all the people of the assembly.

:34 "This shall be an everlasting statute for you, to make atonement for the children of Israel, for all their sins, once a year." And he did as the LORD commanded Moses.

:2…not to come at just any time …

This was the only time during the year that anybody was allowed into the Holy of Holies.

Approaching God wasn’t to be an everyday kind of thing.

Doing it might mean taking your life into your own hands, you might not come out alive, just like Nadab and Abihu.

Part of the priest’s robe was a hem with golden bells sewn to it.  As they went into the Tabernacle, people could hear the priest walking around because of the bells.  If the bells stopped tinkling, something was wrong.

It is thought that later the high priests began to tie a rope around their ankle, just in case they died, then somebody from the outside could pull their body out.


You CAN enter in.

Unlike the Old Testament worship, we ARE able to enter into God’s presence at any time.
That is because the blood of Jesus Christ is so much better than the blood of bulls or goats.  His blood made the way open once and for all.
(Heb 10:19-22 NKJV)  Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, {20} by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, {21} and having a High Priest over the house of God, {22} let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.
It is healthy for us as Christians to retain that sense of awe and fear at the presence of God, yet to be able to rejoice that we can come before God at any time.
We are actually able to literally come before God’s throne, not be killed, and give praise and worship to God.