Today I want to provide the answer to the question of ‘why we should even study the Book of Leviticus at all?’.
Now fair warning here.
Before we even begin to touch the first verse of the first chapter of Leviticus, there is quite a bit of intro info that needs to be imparted first.
I’m talking about possibly six to ten articles in total before we even get into the Biblical text itself.
This information is absolutely necessary and will set the stage for all to follow.
Okay, so back to the question of why even study Leviticus at all?
Well, the first obvious answer is because Yeshua of Nazareth was the fulfillment of all that the sacrificial system of Leviticus pointed to.
Much criticism is leveled at the Jews during Yeshua’s day, who because of primarily relying on tradition instead of the Holy Scriptures themselves, failed to see the important connection made by the ancient prophets and Yeshua’s coming.
However, how about the leaders of all of those Christian denominations who mouth the words “Jesus is the sacrifice for our sin” from the pulpits yet have no solid understanding of the Biblical sacrificial system that was the prophetic shadow of Christ’s work?
How can they even begin to comprehend the need for, the meaning behind, and the tremendous impact of what Yeshua accomplished, except in the shallowest sense, unless they understand Leviticus?
Thus, this is one important reason to study Leviticus.
Understanding this 3rd book of the Torah will allow you to fully grasp the depths of the transaction that took place on that bloodied execution stake in 30 A.D.
Understanding God’s ordained sacrificial system, as explained in Leviticus will give you a much deeper appreciation of what Yeshua accomplished on the cross, why He did it, and how awesome God’s plan of redemption for us really is.
So I urge you to please do NOT treat Leviticus as some historical oddity, a book that was intended to only be studied by Biblical scholars and historians who are wearing glasses with lenses ten inches thick.
Also don’t think this book is just for the Levitical priests, whether past or in the future when the temple will be built once again in Jerusalem and the blood of bulls and sheep are going to be spilled and we’re going to witness the smoke from the Brazen Altar start billowing towards the heavens seven days a week once again.
No, this book is for all believers, and that includes YOU and me.
Leviticus reveals the major elements of the Lord’s justice system or His MISHPAT.
It gives us a picture of how the Lord intends to bridge the gap between a fallen mankind and an infinitely Holy God.
And a BIG part of this picture is the principle of SUBSTITUTIONARY SACRIFICE and how it releases us from the sin debt we had been carrying.
Now there is another major important reason why we should study Leviticus.
Leviticus gives us the PRIESTLY WORLDVIEW.
Why in the world should that be so important to us?
Well, check out these couple of verses from the Book of Revelations.
“To the seven churches in the province of Asia:
Grace and peace to you from him who is,
and who was,
and who is to come,
and from the seven spirits before his throne,
and from Yeshua the Messiah,
who is the faithful witness,
the firstborn from the dead,
and the ruler of the kings of the earth.
To him who loves us and has freed us
from our sins by his blood,
and has made us to be a kingdom and priests
to serve his God and Father—
to him be glory and power for ever and ever!
Now I know there is going to be some disagreement with what I’m about to say here (sorry Kathy), but is not this verse saying that all blood-bought believers are priests of the Kingdom of God, whose King is Yeshua of Nazareth?
I mean it’s not even an allegorical or metaphorical statement, it LITERALLY says He has made us a kingdom AND PRIESTS.
Again, I’m aware that some will say when taken in its proper context, the Lord is referring ONLY to Levite Hebrews here.
Their reasoning is that Yeshua sent out disciples or apostles but never priests (I’m not saying this is wrong, I’m still studying this issue).
However, whether or not all believers become priests or not, the Levite priests were to serve as models reflecting the Lord’s Holiness and we are ALL called to be HOLY because the Lord is Holy.
Now if we are all called to be Holy and the Levite priests are to be model reflections of that Holiness, don’t you think it would be a good idea to study the very book where Holiness itself is defined in exacting detail?
This is why we are studying Leviticus.
One final point.
I want to share some words from the Apostle Paul, the very man gentile believers just looooooooooooooooooooooooooove to quote to substantiate their claims that the Law has been done away with.
Check these words out:
“Whatever was written in former times
was written for OUR learning,
so that with the encouragement of the Scriptures
we might patiently hold on to our hope”.
Hmmm, this is mighty finger-licking interesting.
So what was WRITTEN IN THE SCRIPTURES was for our learning and encouragement!!!
And keep in mind that when Paul penned these verses, he was ONLY referring to the Old Testament because the New Testament didn’t even exist at this time.
Paul says the Scriptures are there for our learning.
So, let’s learn ’em!