God calls for offerings once the Temple is complete. He gives very specific instructions about how each offering is to be prepared. The people offer animals (bulls, sheep, goats and birds) and grains (how it is offered depends on how it was prepared; it must never ever ever contain yeast). The people also bring animals as peace (or "wave" or "fellowship" offerings) and sin offerings.
A sin offering is something that I am very pleased we don't follow to the letter anymore. Depending on who the person was in society, their either brought a bull, lamb or a goat before the temple. The elders would lay their hands on its head and then kill it. Blood is then sprinkled all over the place and the animal is taken outside the city and burned. I can only imagine how disgusting that could get in downtown Atlanta... :)
The part that gave me chills was when it discussed the offering of the lamb. It uses the same languages and techniques as the other animals but I can't help but draw the comparison to Christ and it gives me chills.
33 He is to lay his hand on its head and slaughter it for a sin offering at the place where the burnt offering is slaughtered. 34 Then the priest shall take some of the blood of the sin offering with his finger and put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering and pour out the rest of the blood at the base of the altar. 35 He shall remove all the fat, just as the fat is removed from the lamb of the fellowship offering, and the priest shall burn it on the altar on top of the offerings made to the LORD by fire. In this way the priest will make atonement for him for the sin he has committed, and he will be forgiven.
In the same way Jesus' blood was spilled before God and the world for the atonement of our sins... when I think about the true magnitude of it all, it just takes my breath away.
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