“He is to slaughter the young bull before Adonai ; and the sons of Aharon, the cohanim, are to present the blood. They are to splash the blood against all sides of the altar, which is by the entrance to the tent of meeting.”-Leviticus 1:5
The Bible uses a special word to describe the slaying of the sacrificial animal.
In Hebrew, that word is SHAHAT.
This word refers to the very specific way the sacrificial animal was slain so as to make it as painless and quick as possible.
How this worked is that the animal was tied to one of the four horns on the Altar, and then its throat was slit.
Biologically speaking, what this resulted in was that the main artery running through the animal’s neck, the one that fed blood to the brain, was severed.
As gruesome as all of this may sound, this was the most humane thing to do because it caused almost immediate unconsciousness and death.
This procedure was also performed in a manner that pretty much allowed all of the blood to be captured in an authorized sacrificial vessel which was offered up to God in a ceremonial gesture and then splashed onto the sides of the Brazen Altar.
Afterwards, the animal was skinned, chopped up and sectioned into pieces.
Finally, the officiating priest would place the chunks of meat on top of the altar where they would be completely BURNT UP in the flames.
All of this took place on the North side of the altar.
If the OLAH (burnt offering) was a bird, slightly different procedures had to be performed because the bird was too small to have its throat slit.
Now the important takeaway to be gleaned from all of these procedures is that it was the worshipper, the common person who performed most of the sacrificial procedures.
After the common Israelite laid his hands on the animal, it was he who killed the animal, NOT the priest.
The duties of the attending priest were to catch the blood in a ritual container, splash it onto the sides of the Altar, and put the meat into the flames.
However, it was the worshipper who performed most of the duties including the slaying of the sacrificial animal.
Now contrast this with your average worship service in our day and age.
Worship today is basically just showing up, singing a few songs, listening to a boring sermon, engaging in a bit of superficial chit-chat and then going home.
This was not how it was supposed to be according to the Lord’s plan.
Under God’s plan, the worshipper was an active participant in the rituals and sacrificial procedures.