Sermon Summary
Leviticus 1 – Burnt Offering

Scripture: Leviticus 1:1-9

We’re in the time of Lent and looking forward to the resurrection of Jesus Christ. So we’re starting a new series of studies on the book of Leviticus. The book of Leviticus foreshadowed the coming of Jesus and it’s also the foundation of the 12th book of the History of Redemption Series.

The Jewish children start their learning by studying the book of Leviticus. After one sin, in order to rebuild the relationship with God, the instructions and methods are all in Leviticus. We must remember the unconditional love of God, even though we are fallen, and Leviticus reminds us of this.

Our founding pastor Rev Abraham Park says that we can find the overflowing grace of God through this book of Leviticus and we come to understand why Jesus must die on the cross for us.

In Hebrew, the book of Leviticus is named for its opening word, “vayikra,” meaning “and he called.” Here God calls out to Moses, transmitting a set of instructions.

In Hebrew “vayikra” = וַיִּקְרָא
Its meaning “and He called”, shows us God’s love, as God calls all the sinners as He called out to Adam after he sinned. Leviticus is a reminder of God’s love, God calls us to bring us back, and He redeems our sins and saves us.

Leviticus is the 3rd book after Exodus. God called the Hebrews out of Egypt in Exodus and gave them the 10 commandments. But they broke those commandments so now the people needed a way to come back to God.

In the wilderness, Moses built the Tabernacle according to God’s blueprint. Once it’s completed, God told Moses to depart because now God’s presence fills it. (Exodus 40:35)

Then God gave all His Laws in Leviticus, and after that, Moses was able to enter into the Tabernacle again. (Numbers 1:1) This shows that even though we sinned, God wants to be with us.

A summary of the book of Leviticus:
Ch. 1-7 Ritual sacrifices
Ch. 8-10 Ordination or priests
Ch. 11-15 Laws about ritual purity
Ch. 16-17 Day of Atonement and sacrifice
Ch. 18-20 Laws about moral purity (holiness)
Ch.21-22 Qualification of the priests
Ch. 23-25 Holy Days (Feasts)

Today we will study ritual sacrifices, which include burnt offerings, grain offerings, peace offerings, sin offerings etc.

Leviticus 1:2-3
“Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: When any one of you brings an offering to the LORD, you shall bring your offering of the livestock—of the herd and of the flock.
‘If his offering is a burnt sacrifice of the herd, let him offer a male without blemish; he shall offer it of his own free will at the door of the tabernacle of meeting before the LORD.

Hebrews 4:15
For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.

Jesus is the Son of God who came to us as a man without any sin. Jesus is the sacrificial Lamb as well as the door for the sheep to enter in.
The beginning of Passion Week is the Triumph Entry. But once Jesus went into Jerusalem, the people tried to seize him and slaughter Him.

Leviticus 1:4
He shall lay his hand on the head of the burnt offering, that it may be accepted for him to make atonement on his behalf.

Don’t let anyone just lay their hand on your head, as the laying of hand on the sacrifice animal, is to transfer their sin onto the animal. Be very careful, you may think you’re receiving blessings when someone lays their hand on your head, but you’re actually being transferred their sins!

Any offerings made to God must be done with a thankful heart, then it will be pleasing to God. We ourselves must become that spiritual sacrifice and pleasing offering to God.

The worshipper who had sinned must bring the sacrifice animal and kill it on the north side of the altar. (Leviticus 1:11)

This animal must be from your own house, especially the Passover lamb. In here it’s a bull, young enough so that there’s no defect. The people will bring their most friendly animal to offer to God.

Now imagine you’ve to bring your pet as a sacrifice. Then you lay your hand on the poor little thing and then you cut its throat and kill it! This is to show us how horrible and terrible our sin is.

When you offer a burnt offering the blood remains, it’s not burnt. And the skin is taken by the priests. Jesus’s blood is also spilled for us and His tunic was split into four and taken.

The sacrifice animal is cut up bit by bit by the worshipper, and the priest burns it on the altar starting from the head and the fat. (Leviticus 1:8-9)

The head is where sin begins, my sinful thoughts, greed and fleshly desires. Fat represents the most preferred things, my greed and my heart. Entrails is what’s inside me, my gut. Legs for the animals but arms and legs for humans, it’s what carries out my sinful thoughts.

Jesus Christ is our sacrificial Lamb who takes away our sins. They put a crown of thorns on Jesus, then He was nailed on the cross by his arms and feet and pierced through his side.

Burnt offering = olah in Hebrew
The Hebrew noun olah (עֹלָה) means “that which goes up [in smoke]”

The burnt offering is burned and everything is given to God via the smoke and aroma. So we too need to give all to God, when our sins are taken away. The aroma must be soothing to the Lord.

We must become the soothing aroma to God, and then God’s holiness is revealed. (Ezekiel 20:41)

We need the knowledge of God to become a soothing aroma. Let us be the aroma of life and not the aroma of death! What do people smell from our lives? We must have the aroma of Christ permeating our lives. We must have the spiritual aroma to make people find hope of life. (2 Corinthians 2:14,16)

Ephesians 5:1-2
Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.

We must imitate Christ to become this fragrant aroma. We must walk in love! Leviticus is about God’s love, Jesus walked in love and we must also do the same and give ourselves up for Him.

Burnt offerings prevent God’s anger for man’s sins from turning into punishment. It brings God and man together! May we be able to offer up this pleasing offering to God our Father!


Pastor Samuel Kim