02/01/16 A Sweet Aroma

READING: Leviticus 1-4

May I be honest with you with this devotion? The book of Leviticus is not an easy read for me. I much prefer the narratives of journeys, battles, victories, and miracles. The guy in me likes the adventure, and the pragmatist in me likes texts that are seemingly much easier to apply to my life. Nevertheless, Leviticus has much to teach us — as all of God’s Word does. 

Again today, I am captured by the repetition of single phrases in these chapters. First, some of the offerings in chapters 1 and 3 are described as “a fire offering of a pleasing aroma to the Lord” (Lev. 1:9, 13, 17; 3:5, 16 ). The smell of the sacrifice indicated the obedience of God’s people — which is exactly what God wanted. Later, Jesus would be the sacrifice that was most pleasing to the Father (Eph 5:2). 

Second, the result of a sin offering is described several times in chapter 4 as follows: “In this way the priest will make atonement on his behalf for that person’s sin, and he will be forgiven” (Lev 4:26, 31, 35). The beauty of the gospel is foreshadowed in verses like these. Our Creator God, against Whom we have sinned, has put in place a plan for forgiveness. He does not compromise His Word (thus, He demands death where there is sin), but He provides a gracious substitutionary means of forgiveness. The fragrance of the death of his Son makes it possible for us to be forgiven. 

Now, here’s the application piece for me today. I wonder how often I take that simple truth for granted. I wonder how many times I choose to follow the devil’s path simply because the gospel itself no longer brings me to my knees in gratitude. May God forgive me. 

ACTION STEPS: Consider these steps today:

  • Use today to focus on the sacrificial death of Jesus. 
  • Thank God for the cross. 
  • In the light of the sacrifice of Jesus, say “no” to temptation. 

PRAYER: “God, I praise you for your grace you extend to me. May my life be a sacrifice for You today.”

TOMORROW’S READING:  Leviticus 5-7