The burnt offerings in the Old Testament were quite a to-do. It was important which animal was chosen, how it was killed, and what was done with the blood. Then finally, how it was placed and burned on the altar. We can be thankful that Jesus became the ultimate sacrifice for the world.
If the animal you present as a burnt offering is from the herd, it must be a male with no defects. . . Then the priest will burn the entire sacrifice on the altar as a burnt offering. It is a special gift, a pleasing aroma to the Lord. Leviticus 1:3, 9
One recent warm February evening I took advantage of the unusual weather we were experiencing in the northeast. I cooked burgers on the grill. When those round discs of ground beef started to cook, boy did they smell good.
Occasionally we will put a roast in the crockpot and let it slow cook all day. When we would come into the house in the evening, the aroma of that beef was mouth-watering.
So. . . what is my point?
As the priests would sacrifice a cow or ox, they would cut it up and lay the pieces on the fire. When it laid on the coals and the cooking began, can you imagine how good it would have smelled? It probably gave off an aroma making it tempting to slice off a piece. But as the offering continued it moved past the cooking stage. It would eventually burn to a black crisp.
Every cow or ox, lamb or goat, that was laid on the altar served as a valuable object lesson. While each offering burned before the Lord, the stench would continually get worse. It was a reminder of how wretched sin is to the Lord. In fact, the aroma was a sweet smell to God compared to the stench of the sin of His people.
Jesus is the Ultimate Sacrifice
Jesus became the ultimate sacrifice for us. In the book of Hebrews, the author described how Jesus was a better sacrifice. His blood was poured out for our sins when He was lifted up from the earth on a cross.
How much more will the sacred blood of the Messiah thoroughly cleanse our consciences! For by the power of the eternal Spirit he has offered himself to God as the perfect Sacrifice that now frees us from our dead works to worship and serve the living God. Hebrews 9:14
Jesus, our Savior, conquered death and the grave. The writer of Hebrews continued by telling us the benefit of Christ being our ultimate sacrifice.
Just as each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment, so also Christ was offered once for all time as a sacrifice to take away the sins of many people. Hebrews 9:27-28
And because of what He accomplished for us, the stench of our sin can now be replaced by our sacrifice of praise. That praise is a sweet aroma to the Lord. When we read the rest of verse 28, we will want to praise Him.
And now to those who eagerly await him, he will appear a second time; not to deal with sin, but to bring us the fullness of salvation. Hebrews 9:28
Lord, thank you for your death on the cross and your resurrection from the grave. Also thank you for entering the throne room of God on our behalf. Because of your sacrifice, you have given each of us an opportunity to bow before you and receive forgiveness of our sins.
With Jesus being the ultimate sacrifice, you may want to read this related post. The Difference Between the Old Laws and the New.
More on evangelism can be read at this post called How To Reach Lost People For The Kingdom Of God.
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