‘If his offering is a goat, then he is to present it before Adonai.”
What often surprises some folks is that for the ZEVAH sacrifice (peace offering) in addition to cattle and sheep, goats may also be used.
The reason is because of the following NT verse:
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, accompanied by all the angels, he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be assembled before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates sheep from goats. The ‘sheep’ he will place at his right hand and the ‘goats’ at his left.”-Leviticus 3:31-33
When people read this verse, people jump to the conclusion that goats must be, in all circumstances, animals that somehow symbolize uncleanness or evil.
This is a perfect example of inflexible, black-and-white Greek or gentile thinking in action.
Yeshua isn’t cursing goats for all time in this verse, he’s just using the type of work a shepherd does when he SEPARATES certain animals from one another as an analogy for how a similar type of SEPARATION is going to occur in the end times.
The truth is goats were prime sacrificial animals and they were generally heartier and more fertile than sheep.
They were perfectly acceptable sacrifices to the Lord.
Having said that, they did hold a slightly lower status than sheep and yes, sometimes they could be viewed as negative.
Again, let’s not be so rigid or Greek in our thinking folks.
Think of leaven or yeast in food.
Depending on its use, it can sometimes be both positive and negative.
In the same way, goats can represent both sides of the coin.
Speaking of the rigid Greek mind, this brings me to my next point.
Why can’t we seem to be able to find the “Peace Offering” in the New Testament?
The reason is because the only NT manuscripts we have are in Greek, not Hebrew.
And there is no equivalent word for ZEVAH in the Greek language.
The ZEVAH offering is a purely Hebrew concept.
The truth is the various types of Levitical sacrifices we are studying ARE in the New Testament, but we just can’t recognize them.
Because the Greek Bible translators lumped them all under the one word “sacrifice”.
For example, in chapter 24 of Acts, we are told that Paul paid for the offering of four men who had taken Nazarite vows.
He was paying for the sacrificial animals necessary for a ZEVAH or Peace Offering.
Heck, if you want some surefire Scriptural evidence that the law wasn’t done away with, here it is folks.
After we’re finished studying Leviticus, I think you’ll find your understanding of the New Testament greatly enhanced, as you’ll be able to recognize the various sacrifices and offerings being performed.
CONNECTING THIS TEACHING TO THE NEW TESTAMENT
“What, then, is to be done?
They will certainly hear that you have come.
So do what we tell you.
We have four men who are under a vow.
Take them with you, be purified with them,
and pay the expenses connected
with having their heads shaved.
Then everyone will know that there is nothing
to these rumors which they have heard about you;
but that, on the contrary,
you yourself stay in line
and keep the Torah.”