I was reading the Remix Solo which are excerpts of scripture that you examine at a deeper level. Slowly and with a quiet and pensive heart towards God. Like you would sip French press coffee. First inhaling it, then one delicious sip at a time. Examining scripture with that level of intentionality allows it to have a fuller effect on your whole being. Sometimes that effect is like hitting a wall at full speed. I just did that a couple of days ago. Take my word for it, it really hurts and takes a while to recover.
The Scripture was Leviticus 4:32-35 in the Message
32. “If he brings a lamb for an Absolution-Offering, he shall present a female without any defect,
33. lay his hand on the head of the Absolution-Offering, and slaughter it at the same place they slaughter the Whole-Burnt-Offering.
34. The priest will take some of the blood of the Absolution-Offering with his finger, smear it on the horns of the Altar of Burnt-Offering, and pour the rest at the base of the Altar.
35. He shall remove all the fat, the same as for the lamb of the Peace-Offering. Finally the priest will burn it on the Altar on top of the gifts to God. “In this way, the priest makes atonement for him on account of his sin and he’s forgiven.
At first you are to read it slowly. Then again in a whisper as you imagine every part of that scene in your head. Can you see yourself walking into the field to find a little white perfect female lamb. The best that you have. I can imagine that I was there when the perfect little thing came into this world and quickly attached herself to her attentive mother. I would then remember the joy between mother and infant. The bond so strong that I would gladly die for any of my children.
I would have to carry that white, sweet bundle of fur over to the priest knowing what would be done to her. Female, delicate, little, innocent, white, soft. I love animals, this exercise is hard for me. This little baby girl lamb is going to have to pay an ultimate price for my sins that day.
Then I would have to carry that lamb over to the priest knowing what comes next. Would the altar already be bathed in blood? I can imagine the smell of iron in the air, turning my stomach as the lamb looks up at me and calls for it’s mother. I think at this point I would probably start to lose it, through tears or worse. My stomach would be lurching.
I would hand her over with trembling guilt laden hands, knowing what was to come. The priest would lay his hand on her head. In that moment transferring all my sins to that innocent little white bundle, crying for her mother. Then a knife will very quickly slit her throat and her life would leave her innocent eyes. If you have ever had to put down a beloved pet, this sight is haunting. It cuts through all your memories and squeezes your heart with the greatest regret.
The price of my sins would be this offering. Why did God make it so gruesome? Was it because he is insensitive or maybe because our sins are so heinous? God allows this visual demonstration to unfold before us to show us the great cost of our actions against God and others.
I was imagining the Priest who actually had to do all this grotesque work and the fact that My Jesus was the perfect lamb that took away my sins. My sins bore a terrible price. How casual we can be today with the thought of Grace that carries no memory of the great and ultimate price. Jesus’ death was a thousand times worse than what happened to the lamb. His blood was shed so I could be free, free to love, to live forever in His presence and to pursue others so they may know they have been paid for.
I am also free to sin again. But can you imagine that sinning would carry for us a greater burden if you knew the walk you would again have to take to the sheep pen?
How about the greater thought of Jesus’ sacrifice, the cross and the blood that was beaten out of his body for me and for you.
I long to remember the sacrifice so that I constantly rejoice in the freedom to not sin.
My my heart hurt so that I do not hurt yours Lord.