Nepaug Bible Church - - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes -

Leviticus: Fellowship With A Holy God
Part I: Acceptable Relationship With A Holy God, Leviticus 1:1-7:38
A. The Burnt Offering: The Need For Wholehearted Commitment To A Holy God
(Leviticus 1:1-17)
  1. Introduction
    1. Jesus noted that if the believer kept His word, God would fellowship with him in his life, John 14:21-23.
    2. However, to fellowship with a holy God demands a wholehearted commitment to heeding God, and this truth is revealed in the burnt offering of Leviticus 1:1-17 in accord with its context (as follows):
  2. The Burnt Offering: The Need For Wholehearted Commitment To A Holy God, Leviticus 1:1-17.
    1. After God's presence had filled the newly-erected tabernacle in Exodus 40:34-38, in great contrast to God's having presented Himself with staggering harshness in perfect righteousness on Mount Sinai, He gently spoke from the tabernacle to Moses on how Israel could enjoy fellowship with Him, Lev. 1:1-2:
      1. God's first presentation of Himself to Israel from Mount Sinai came with great harshness that the people dreaded, Exodus 19:16-24. Terrifying thunder, the shrill wail of a ram's horn, and the sight of a consuming fire and smoke with an continual earthquake all frightened the people, and God's exacting demands of holiness that required them not even to gaze so closely at the Lord's glory lest they see Him all indicate the contrast between God's infinite righteousness and man's great sinfulness.
      2. Yet, to reveal how sinful man could peacefully fellowship with such an infinitely righteous God in GRACE in great contrast to the Mount Sinai event, God gently spoke to Moses from the tabernacle, directing how such fellowship was possible, Leviticus 1:1ff.
    2. That fellowship with a holy God required first of all a wholehearted commitment to Him, Lev. 1:3-17:
      1. The Lord had directed in the first of the Ten Commandments that His people have no god before Him, that they not make any graven image nor bow down to any entity other than Himself, Exodus 20:1-6.
      2. In accord with this call, the Lord directed the first type of sacrifice an individual was to offer was a burnt offering that signified wholehearted commitment unto the Lord (as follows), Leviticus 1:3-17:
        1. The sacrificial animal offered in a burnt offering (Leviticus 1:3) "symbolized the offerer's voluntary presentation to God," Ryrie Study Bible, KJV, 1978 ed., ftn. to Leviticus 1:3.
        2. The offerer was to lay his hand on the head of the animal, signifying the animal was his substitute before the Lord as an atonement in his behalf, Leviticus 1:4.
        3. After the animal was killed, its shed blood was sprinkled round about on the altar, and the entire carcass was cut up and consumed by fire on the altar as an acceptable aroma unto God, Lev . 1:4-9.
        4. Whether the animal was a bull (Lev. 1:3), a sheep or a goat (Lev. 1:10) or just a pair of turtle doves or pigeons (Lev. 1:14), the whole carcass was consumed on the altar, Leviticus 1:8-9, 10-13, 14-17.
      3. This complete burning of the carcass on the altar prefigures the wholehearted dedication of Christ to do the Father's will as He died a substitutionary death for all men, 1 Peter 2:24; 1 John 2:2 with John 4:34.
      4. However, once justified, the believer, like his Savior, is similarly to commit himself wholeheartedly to God to do His will for all of his Christian life and service, Rom. 12:1-2, 3-15:13; Ibid., ftn. to Lev. 1:3:
        1. Paul taught that, in response to God's great salvation grace unto us, we believers are obliged to present our bodies as living sacrifices unto God, our spiritual act of worship, Rom. 12:1-2.
        2. From the ensuing Romans 12:3-15:13 context, we see this commitment involves using our spiritual gifts for service in the local church (Rom. 12:3-8) and living godly lives on all fronts, including life in relation to society (12:9-21), to government (13:1-14) and to other believers (Rom. 14:1-15:13).
Lesson: Fellowship with a righteous God demands that (1) we rely on Christ's wholehearted atonement for our sin by trusting in Him for salvation, John 1:11-13. (2) Then, we must be FULLY committed to SERVE and LIVE for Him in His will to enjoy blessed fellowship with Him, J ohn 14:21-23.

Application: (1) May we trust in Christ's atonement offered for us in righteous wholeheartedness to a perfectly righteous God, John 3:16. (2) Then, may we FULLY COMMIT ourselves to LIVE and SERVE our perfectly righteous God that we might enjoy His blessed fellowship in our daily lives!