TODAY’S SPECIAL: Leviticus 17:11

TO CHEW ON: "For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one’s life." Leviticus 17:11

Moses had been up on the mountain with God for a long time and God had told him many things. One of the things God gold Moses was a way to deal with sin.

What is sin? It is missing the target. If we think of doing everything God has said we should do, and not doing anything God has said we shouldn't do as the target, sin is missing that target.

For example, when God told Adam and Eve not to eat of the special tree in the garden and they did – that was sin. And when God told the people they were not to worship any other God but Him and they made a calf idol and worshiped it – that was sin. God gave the people a list of rules (we call them the Ten Commandments) which told them what was sin for each area of life, from how they treated parents and neighbors to how they treated God. The trouble was, no one could keep all these rules.

The punishment for breaking these rules – even one of them – was death. Period.

But on the mountain, God told Moses that He would make a way for the people to come back into His good favor – make atonement. It was a way they didn’t have to take the punishment of death themselves. They could substitute the blood of an animal. The blood would show that the animal had died (for no living thing, human or animal, can live without blood going through its body). The blood showed that the death penalty had been paid – for now. God accepted as a temporary punishment for sin, the death of an animal instead of the death of the sinful person.

Bringing the lamb as an offering - Picture from

PRAYER: Dear God, thank You for making a way for people to be right with You – through animal sacrifices, and then through Jesus. Amen.

MORE: Sin’s Wages

God’s punishment for sin hasn’t changed. Paul, in the New Testament book of Romans calls this punishment ‘wages.’ Those wages are still death. Every one of us earns these wages every time we sin. But Someone – not an animal – took the punishment of death for the sins each one of us has committed.
1. Who was that Someone? (I Corinthians 15:3) ____________
2. What penalty did He pay? _____________

Here is a verse to memorize. It will remind you of sin’s wages and God’s gift to us through Jesus:

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 6:23