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This Week's Reading: Exodus 35-40; Leviticus 1; 16; 19
Come Follow Me Insight #1
In this week’s reading, we FINALLY see God’s return to man’s presence after 2500 years of separation (source). During the time of the Garden of Eden God had been able to dwell among His sinless children. However, when Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit God could no longer physically be with them. But now, with the introduction of the first recorded temple in man’s history, God would once again be able to be in His children’s presence (in the holy of holies). This is a big point in the spiritual history of mankind!
Come Follow Me Insight #2
At the beginning of Exodus, the biggest threat to the Israelites’ survival was the evil of Pharaoh and his power to destroy them. However, by the end of Exodus things had changed drastically. The Israelites had left Egypt and no longer lived in fear of Pharaoh. They were given many chances to choose God and enjoy His power and protection. But they repeatedly rejected Him and showed their unworthiness to be His covenant children. The end of Exodus powerfully portrays this message with Moses– as Israel’s representative– attempting to enter the newly built tabernacle/temple and not being allowed to enter (Exodus 40:35). This is symbolic of how Israel– though they were finally free of the threat of Pharaoh’s evil– had so damaged their relationship with God that their own evil was threatening their spiritual survival.
Come Follow Me Insight #3
The book of Leviticus includes a lot of details about rituals that needed to be performed. One of these was to occur on what was known as the Day of Atonement– a day in which the sins of all the Israelites were to be washed clean.
In this ritual, two goats were to be brought to the high priest. One goat was to be used as a sin offering. It would be killed and its blood sprinkled on the mercy seat in the tabernacle. This is beautifully symbolic of how Christ’s blood earns us the mercy of a just God. (Leviticus 16:9, 15-16)
The other goat is a bit more confusing. This goat was not killed but was symbolically burdened with all the sins of the Israelites. The goat was then sent out into the wilderness rather than being killed. While this might initially seem confusing it is a beautiful illustration of how– when we repent– our sins are literally taken away from us. They are not just forgotten, they are gone. Christ is both a sacrificial offering and our scapegoat, the one who takes away from us the blame that is rightfully ours. (Leviticus 16:21)
My Favorite Scriptures for the Week
- Exodus 30:17-21
- Exodus 35:4 – 36:7
- Exodus 37:1-9; 40:20-21
- Exodus 37:17-24
- Exodus 38:1-7
- Exodus 40:26-27
- Leviticus 1:1-9; 16