Leviticus 6:1 ¶ And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
This phrase is used continually to preface the instructions being recorded in this book. It’s easy to read over it without taking note that God is emphasizing that these are His instructions—not Moses’.
Leviticus 6:2 If a soul sin, and commit a trespass against the LORD, and lie unto his neighbour in that which was delivered him to keep, or in fellowship, or in a thing taken away by violence, or hath deceived his neighbour;
Leviticus 6:3 Or have found that which was lost, and lieth concerning it, and sweareth falsely; in any of all these that a man doeth, sinning therein:
Leviticus 6:4 Then it shall be, because he hath sinned, and is guilty, that he shall restore that which he took violently away, or the thing which he hath deceitfully gotten, or that which was delivered him to keep, or the lost thing which he found,
Leviticus 6:5 Or all that about which he hath sworn falsely; he shall even restore it in the principal, and shall add the fifth part more thereto, and give it unto him to whom it appertaineth, in the day of his trespass offering.
Leviticus 6:6 And he shall bring his trespass offering unto the LORD, a ram without blemish out of the flock, with thy estimation, for a trespass offering, unto the priest:
Leviticus 6:7 And the priest shall make an atonement for him before the LORD: and it shall be forgiven him for any thing of all that he hath done in trespassing therein.
These verses address the need for a trespass offering for sins against ones’ neighbor regarding…
Š things entrusted to your protection
Š deceit with intent to deprive, embezzle or cheat
Š lying about finding lost property and swearing to support your lie.
“because he hath sinned, and is guilty (v4)” – sounds like it is the guilty conscience of the person causing them to acknowledge their sin, but the original language seems to include being proven guilty.
Obviously, the sin must be acknowledged, but the offender is to restore the principal plus 20% interest to the one wronged. This is to be done on the same day that he brings a trespass offering to seek God’s forgiveness; note the order—restitution first, then offering to God. It is to be a ram without blemish as approved by the priest and offered according to the instructions given previously.
Leviticus 6:8 ¶ And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Leviticus 6:9 Command Aaron and his sons, saying, This is the law of the burnt offering: It is the burnt offering, because of the burning upon the altar all night unto the morning, and the fire of the altar shall be burning in it.
Leviticus 6:10 And the priest shall put on his linen garment, and his linen breeches shall he put upon his flesh, and take up the ashes which the fire hath consumed with the burnt offering on the altar, and he shall put them beside the altar.
Leviticus 6:11 And he shall put off his garments, and put on other garments, and carry forth the ashes without the camp unto a clean place.
Leviticus 6:12 And the fire upon the altar shall be burning in it; it shall not be put out: and the priest shall burn wood on it every morning, and lay the burnt offering in order upon it; and he shall burn thereon the fat of the peace offerings.
Leviticus 6:13 The fire shall ever be burning upon the altar; it shall never go out.
It seems that this section would have been a better spot to start this chapter. This section seems to give further instruction to the priests—Aaron and his sons—regarding burnt offerings. These instructions would seem to apply to the daily morning and evening offerings that were offered on behalf of the people as instructed in Exodus 29. The offering is to burn on the altar all night.
In the morning the priest is to put on his linen garments to gather the ashes from the offering and put them in the designated place beside the altar. He is then to change into other clothes to take the ashes outside the camp to the appointed place. The fire on the altar for burnt offerings is never to be allowed to go out. He is to put fresh wood on it every morning. It is also on this altar that the fat of the peace offerings is to be burnt.
Exodus 29:38–42 “Now this is that which thou shalt offer upon the altar; two lambs of the first year day by day continually. The one lamb thou shalt offer in the morning; and the other lamb thou shalt offer at even: And with the one lamb a tenth deal of flour mingled with the fourth part of an hin of beaten oil; and the fourth part of an hin of wine for a drink offering. And the other lamb thou shalt offer at even, and shalt do thereto according to the meat offering of the morning, and according to the drink offering thereof, for a sweet savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD. This shall be a continual burnt offering throughout your generations at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation before the LORD: where I will meet you, to speak there unto thee.”
The fact that the fire was never to be allowed to burn out paints a picture to me of the truth that the LORD is always available to the repentant sinner and that the sacrifice of Jesus would be sufficient forever.
Another important picture of instruction in this section is the difference in clothes worn by the priests when serving in God’s presence; they are to identify them as separate from the world. Purity and holiness are everywhere pictured in God’s instructions as to what pleases Him and is according to His will. This was in stark contrast to the practices associated with the worship of false gods.
I remember from my study of Ezekiel that linen was specifically chosen so as not to cause the wearer to sweat. Following is a pertinent excerpt from that journal.
“The emphasis seems to be that the garments do not cause the priest to sweat. This, I believe, is a statement regarding our position before the Lord. Nothing that we have done contributes to our salvation in any way. Jesus has done all the work required for our redemption. Our service before Him is a privilege and not a burden. The priests are to picture that truth as they serve before the Lord in the millennial temple.
The linen also represents purity. Although the word for linen used here is not specific, the Hebrew for the word “linen” used in Exodus regarding the garments for Aaron and his sons indicates “bleached stuff, i.e., white linen.” This also emphasizes the holiness and purity that the Lord imputes to each of us as part of a “holy priesthood.”
1Peter 2:5 “Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.” [end excerpt]
Leviticus 6:14 ¶ And this is the law of the meat offering: the sons of Aaron shall offer it before the LORD, before the altar.
Leviticus 6:15 And he shall take of it his handful, of the flour of the meat offering, and of the oil thereof, and all the frankincense which is upon the meat offering, and shall burn it upon the altar for a sweet savour, even the memorial of it, unto the LORD.
Leviticus 6:16 And the remainder thereof shall Aaron and his sons eat: with unleavened bread shall it be eaten in the holy place; in the court of the tabernacle of the congregation they shall eat it.
Leviticus 6:17 It shall not be baken with leaven. I have given it unto them for their portion of my offerings made by fire; it is most holy, as is the sin offering, and as the trespass offering.
Leviticus 6:18 All the males among the children of Aaron shall eat of it. It shall be a statute for ever in your generations concerning the offerings of the LORD made by fire: every one that toucheth them shall be holy.
Instructions to the priests continue in this section regarding the meat offering (chapter 2). Here we learn that the priests are to be allowed to eat from the remainder of these offerings from the people; however, it was to be eaten without leaven in the holy place in the court of the tabernacle. Even the male children—future priests of Israel—were allowed to eat from this offering. Emphasis is given that this offering was only to be touched by those that had been set apart or consecrated to God as priests.
Leviticus 6:19 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Leviticus 6:20 This is the offering of Aaron and of his sons, which they shall offer unto the LORD in the day when he is anointed; the tenth part of an ephah of fine flour for a meat offering perpetual, half of it in the morning, and half thereof at night.
Leviticus 6:21 In a pan it shall be made with oil; and when it is baken, thou shalt bring it in: and the baken pieces of the meat offering shalt thou offer for a sweet savour unto the LORD.
Leviticus 6:22 And the priest of his sons that is anointed in his stead shall offer it: it is a statute for ever unto the LORD; it shall be wholly burnt.
Leviticus 6:23 For every meat offering for the priest shall be wholly burnt: it shall not be eaten.
This section provides instruction for the meat offering made by the priests beginning on the day of their anointing for service. This offering is to consist of a tenth of an ephah of fine flour and cooked in oil in a pan over the fire. When it is cooked, it is to be broken into pieces; half is to be offered in the morning and half in the evening (probably in connection with the evening and morning sacrifices made for the people). The sacrifice is to be totally consumed by fire; none is to be eaten by the priests. This sacrifice is to be made daily during the time of service of the priest.
Leviticus 6:24 ¶ And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Leviticus 6:25 Speak unto Aaron and to his sons, saying, This is the law of the sin offering: In the place where the burnt offering is killed shall the sin offering be killed before the LORD: it is most holy.
Leviticus 6:26 The priest that offereth it for sin shall eat it: in the holy place shall it be eaten, in the court of the tabernacle of the congregation.
Leviticus 6:27 Whatsoever shall touch the flesh thereof shall be holy: and when there is sprinkled of the blood thereof upon any garment, thou shalt wash that whereon it was sprinkled in the holy place.
Leviticus 6:28 But the earthen vessel wherein it is sodden shall be broken: and if it be sodden in a brasen pot, it shall be both scoured, and rinsed in water.
Leviticus 6:29 All the males among the priests shall eat thereof: it is most holy.
Leviticus 6:30 And no sin offering, whereof any of the blood is brought into the tabernacle of the congregation to reconcile withal in the holy place, shall be eaten: it shall be burnt in the fire.
This section provides further instruction for the priests concerning the sin offering (discussed in chapter 4). It is to be sacrificed on the altar similar to the burnt offering. We learn here that the priest that makes the offering is given the remains to eat in the holy place like the meat offering detailed above. This is considered a most holy offering, since it is another type of the sacrifice that Jesus made for our sin. Anything that touched the flesh of this offering was considered holy. If blood from the sacrifice splattered on a garment, it was to be washed in a designated place set apart for that purpose. If an earthen pot is used to cook it, the pot is to be destroyed afterward. If it is cooked in a metal pot, the pot is to be scoured (thoroughly and carefully washed) and rinsed in water. All male priests are allowed to eat meat cooked from this sacrifice. If, however, the offering made required that the blood be taken into the holy place, the whole offering was to be burned; none of it was to be eaten.
It continues to stand out that God is sovereign and alone establishes the standards for what is acceptable and holy before Him. It is very obvious that He demands holiness in His presence. Were it not that we are imputed the very righteousness of God in Jesus we could have no hope of future fellowship with God in His presence as part of His family.
2 Corinthians 5:17–21 “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God. For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.”
As I was looking for help in understanding this section, I ran across these thoughts from Adam Clarke that are well worth considering.
“Does the perpetual fire burn on the altar of thy heart? Art thou ever looking unto Jesus, and beholding, by faith, the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world? And dost thou feel the influences of his Spirit, at all times witnessing with thy spirit that thou art his child, and exciting thee to acts of gratitude and obedience? If not, of what benefit has the religion of Christ been to thee to the present day?”