The Mosaic Offerings Considered
Relation to Pauline Theology

Dr. W. Noble King
March 14, 1955
All Rights Reserved


In this study we shall consider the five or six Mosaic offerings as they teach regeneration and entire sanctification, and as they were adopted in spiritual interpretation by Saint Paul.

The Trespass Offering 
Lev. 6:1-6; 7:1-7

1.  The Trespass here dealt with, is primarily an invasion on the rights of others, especially with regard to property and to service. The word is used to describe the sin of Achan in taking that thing that God had decreed for himself (Joshua 7:1).

     The word is also used to describe the sin of neglecting the service of God and worshipping idols (II Chr. 28:22; 29:6).  Thus taking that which belongs to others, or withholding from others that which belongs to them.  Both are alike transgressions.  Those two citations, then, would cover every form of possible transgression.  (A person who withholds his heart from God is keeping for himself that which belongs to another.)

2.  This invasion on the rights of others which constitutes a trespass is a deliberate and conscious one.  Notice:

"If a soul sin, and commit a trespass against the Lord, and lie unto his neighbor in that which he delivered him to keep, …or in a thing taken away by violence, or hath deceived his neighbor.  Or hath found that which was lost and lied concerning it, and sweareth falsely, in any or all that a man doeth, sinning therein" (Lev. 6:2, 3).

Here we have conscious lying, conscious deception, conscious fraud, and   deliberate false oaths, and deliberate disregard of God.  The trespass offering covered "That a man doeth knowingly sinning therein."

3. This invasion on the rights of others called for restitution:  "Then it shall be, because he hath sinned and is guilty, that he shall restore that which he took away violently, or the thing that he had deceitfully gotten, or that which was delivered him to keep, or the lost thing which he found"  (Lev. 6:4).

(1) First we have reconciliation with the person wronged by means of confession to him with regard to the wrong done to him.  This evidently had to be done before the penitent had access to the altar of sacrifice (Lev. 6:5).

(2) Second we have restoration to the rightful owner of the thing wrongfully taken from him (Lev. 6:4, 5).  Jesus carried this basic principle over in the New Testament by saying, "Leave there thy gift before the altar, and go thy way; first be reconciled to thy brother, and then come and offer thy gift (Matt. 5:24).

4. This invasion on the rights of others, after confession and restitution, called for the death of a ram at the altar of sacrifice.

(1) The offering of this ram had to be voluntary on the part of the offerer.  No man forced him to do so; but it was death to him if he did not do so.

(2) As the ram stood on the north side of the altar of death for him, the one who offered him placed his hands over the ram’s head, and confessed his sins.  He thus figuratively placed them (transferred them) on the head of that ram.  Because of that transference the ram was doomed to die.  Previously the man was doomed to die because of his sins; now the ram is doomed to die.

(3) The ram was then slain, and his blood was sprinkled around the sides of the altar, and his fat, etc., were burned upon it.  His flesh was eaten by the officiating priests in the holy-place (Lev. 7:3-7).

a. Thus the offerer confessed to all that the ram was taking his place in death.

b. The offerer also confessed to all that the ram was dying because of the nature of sin.  For the man there was a possible substitute, but for the ram there was none.  For us there is a substitute, but for Christ there was none.

c. Sin is in itself a capital offense in its own right.  The sinner must therefore die or find a substitute.  The substitute must be perfect, else he could not atone for others as he would have to die for his own sins.

d. A criminal waiting to be executed for his own crime cannot volunteer to take the place of another criminal guilty of a capital offense, as he must give his all to atone for his own crime.  Thus the substitute had to be perfect as set fourth in the perfect ram.

e. The altar was thus a place of both death and life.  It was also a place of sustenance as the priests lived from that altar.  Jesus was the altar, the sacrifice, and the true bread that came down from heaven.

NOTE:  It must be remembered that in each offering the offerer could go as far, or approach as closely to God as the blood of his offering and the offering were taken.  Thus the forgiven man had access to the altar of life and sustenance and to the holy-place, but not to the altar of incense or the holy of holies.


The Sin Offering
(Lev. 4:8-12, 19-21; 8:2, 14-17; 6:30; Hebrews 13:10-12)

Jesus suffered not only as the Trespass offering, but also as the Sin offering:  "We have an altar whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle.  For the bodies of those beasts whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned without the camp.  Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people (believing people) with his own blood, suffered without the gate."

Note:  The offerings had a certain order.  They were never mixed.  First they started at the Burnt and passed to the Trespass, or they started at the Trespass and moved up to the Burnt.  Moses doctrinally started at the burnt offering (Lev. 1:1 to Lev. 7:7), but in life experiences he started from the trespass offering, and moved to the burnt (Lev. 7:7 to Lev. 1:1).  We are following this method as Paul in Romans follows it, namely, from sinful man to a holy man to a holy God.

1. Let us notice the essential difference between the Trespass-offerings and Sin-offerings.

(1) The trespass-offering required a ram of the first year, and the sin-offering required a bullock (substitution was possibly allowed in cases of poverty or of necessity).

(2) In the case of the trespass-offering the ram was partly burned upon the altar, and his flesh was eaten by the officiating priests in the Holy-Place.  In the case of the sin-offering the bullock was partly burned upon the altar and the rest was taken outside of the camp where the ashes were poured out and burned with fire.

(3) The blood of the trespass-offering was sprinkled on the sides of the altar of burnt-offerings, but was not placed on its horns, nor yet was it taken into the tabernacle proper (mishcan).  The blood of the sin-offering, on the other hand, was placed on the sides of the altar, on the horns of the altar, and also taken into the tabernacle proper (mishcan), and placed on the horns of the altar of sweet incense, and also sprinkled seven times on the separating veil beside the altar of incense (Lev. 4:5-7).  That was as far as anyone was allowed to go until the great day of atonement when Aaron took the blood of the sin-offering within the Holy of Holies and completed the sin-offering sacrifices of the year.  At that time Aaron sprinkled the mercy-seat, and the ground before the mercy-seat, etc.   Thus the offerer of the sin-offering had access to pardon, to cleansing to the horns of the intercessor, and to holy fellowship with God in the Holy of Holies in the person of his representative (In this age each such person is his own representative).

a.  Each offering, in the light of Genesis 3:5 removed that for which it was offered.  The tresspass-offering removed transgression, and the sin-offering removed inbred sin from the soul (Gen. 3:15; John 1:29).  That holy fire that came from the pillar overhead and burns upon that altar represented the fire of the Holy Spirit in effecting regeneration, and entire sanctification.

Note:  Here we have one of the profoundest lessons of symbolism.  The trespass offerer could go as far as his blood was taken —to the sides of the altar of death and life, and in fellowship to the distant presence of God (the Holy-Place).  The offer of the sin-offering could go as far as his blood was taken—to the sides of the altar of death and life, to its horns, to the horns of the altar of incense (the intercessors’ altar), in the Holy-Place, and within the Holy of Holies in the very presence of the eternal God.  Regenerated people live and pray at a distance; sanctified people in the very presence of God.  It is the picture of Isaiah symbolically stated.

II  (Continued)
The Offering of Ignorance

There is another offering called the offering of ignorance.  It is classed with the sin-offering, as it is governed by the same laws.  We shall now deal with it.

1.  There are two widely different definitions of sin in the theological field.  Let us notice them:

(1) The first (Calvinistic) holds that sin consists of any lack of conformity to the full and perfect will of God.  Thus both conscious and known wrongs, and unconscious and unknown wrongs are alike sin.  In short any shortcoming in heart, in ethics, and in character to the perfect holiness of God is sin.  Excerpt:  "Ignorance concerning sin argues man’s real helplessness in dealing with it.  Even if he could by any process rid himself of it (sin), what can he do with the sin of which he is not cognizant?  There is guiltiness in man which never comes within the range of his own consciousness or conscience.  Man’s ignorance of sin proves his total inability to put it away" (PHC., "Lev." P. 45).

Thus, according to that definition of sin man is committing acts of sin which he does not know is sin, and cannot now know is sin, and never can know, in time is sin.  There is something right about that definition, and something tragically wrong about it.

(2)  The second definition is opposed to the first and holds that sin is "the willful transgression of the known will of God."  Not merely a "missing the mark," but an intentional and deliberate missing the mark—we intend to miss the mark.  We sin to do so.  Thus personal guilt accompanies such willful acts of known wrong.  According to this view sin cannot be committed in the unconscious realm, nor yet in the realm of honest or real ignorance.

The first definition of sin does not know what to do with the aspect of the cross of Christ represented by the offering of ignorance.  The second definition makes full use of it, but few of us realize just how we make use of it.

Note:  The offering of ignorance changes the whole aspect and determines the real definition of sin.

2. The same laws that governed the sin-offering, governed the offering of ignorance.  The blood of that offering was sprinkled on the sides of the altar, and on the horns of the altar (Altar of burnt off.); on the horns of the altar of incense, and on the veil.  It was also sprinkled within the Holy of Holies on the great day of atonement.  Those entitled to its merits could go as far as the blood of the offering of ignorance was carried.  That was as far as the blood of the sin-offering was carried.  It is vital to observe this.  In this sense it is an aspect of the sin-offering.  "There is one law for both."  Lev. 4:3, 6, 7, 12, 17, 18, 20, 21, 25.  It thus did the work of the sin-offering, and of the trespass offering, in that it kept errors, mistakes, etc., from becoming trespasses, and carnally staining the soul.  The bullock was emphasized in the sin-offering, but not so in the offering of ignorance.  In this offering there was a wider range of sacrificeable animals.

(1) If a priest sinned through ignorance a young bullock was offered at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.  He laid his hands on its head, and then the blood was sprinkled as was the blood of the sin-offering (Lev. 4:2-13).

(2) If a ruler sinned through ignorance he offered a male kid of the goats at the door of the tabernacle.  He also placed his hands upon its head.  The procedure was then the same as was the procedure in connection with the sin-offering (Lev. 4:22-26).

(3) If the whole congregation sinned through ignorance a young bullock was offered at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.  The elders of the people laid their hands upon its head as it was slain.  The procedure was then the same as was the procedure in the sin-offering (Lev. 4:2, 13-21).

(4) If a common person sinned through ignorance he offered a female kid of the goats.  He placed his hand upon its head at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.  The procedure was then the same as was the procedure in connection with the sin-offering (Lev. 4:27-35).

The higher the religious office held the more valuable was the offering required, signifying that errors in high places, or by leaders, or by persons in official positions, were far more serious in consequences than errors among common people.

3. Let us now notice the changed aspect of the sin question.

(1) A little child dying under the years of accountability goes to heaven.  We teach that, and we are certain that we are correct in this matter.  Said David of his little child:  "I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me" (II Samuel 12:23b).

Note:  Man’s actions in the fields of knowledge and freedom determine his destiny.  The trespass and sin-offerings cover those fields.

 Children are not born regenerated and sanctified.  They are born members of a lost race, and are born dead spiritually.  They are guiltless, and are unconscious of the presence, and of the remedy for carnality in the heart.

           The offering of ignorance covers the child completely.  Should the child die beneath that offering, the offering saves and sanctifies him, and he enters Heaven a holy being.  "Without holiness no man shall see the Lord" is still correct.   (This) is the only field (unaccountability in children, and idiots who never reach accountability) in which God may (if He ever does it) save and sanctify a soul in one work of grace.

           In that field He does not have the freewill of the person to consider.  (We do not know if He does it there even).

(2) An irresponsible idiot remains in heart an innocent child.  In fact he never leaves childhood.  In some cases he never leaves babyhood as far as responsibility is concerned.  He knows nothing of guilt and nothing of the remedy for carnality.  He too, is completely covered by this offering of ignorance aspect of the cross of Christ.

(3) A sanctified saint of God meets with an accident that leaves him for all time mentally, and seriously deranged to the extent that he is no longer responsible for his actions.  He, too, passes completely under this aspect of the atonement (offering of ignorance).

(4) A sanctified saint of God walking with God in the beauty of heart holiness has to have his natural faults, shortcomings, and errors, etc. covered by the sin-offering for ignorance.  This keeps such errors, etc. from becoming transgressions and defiling his soul.  He thus remains holy in a holy state.

a. Now this offering for ignorance makes the first definition of sin completely false, and the second completely true —read them both again.

b. The first would be true if we removed the offering for ignorance from the redemptive scheme.

(5) A regenerated Christian walking with God in all the light he has time to receive; or, owing to a hasty death after regeneration, or, owing to the wrong kind of teaching immediately after regeneration, but remains clearly regenerated, passes under this aspect of the atonement.  He is saved back to the innocency of childhood, and with the child passes under the offering for ignorance:  "If we walk in the light as He is in the light,…"  As long as he remains regenerated he does.  Read: Wood, Perfect Love, p. 29.


The Peace-Offering
(Lev. 3:1-17)

We now pass beyond the offerings covering the sin problem.

1. In human experience a person was not permitted to offer the peace-offering until he had first offered the trespass, and the sin-offerings.  The peace-offering was then voluntarily offered to signify that the offerer had peace with God, with his fellows, and with himself.

(1) In reality it was a soul love feast with God, as dread and fear of God had been removed:  "Perfect love casteth out fear" (I John 4:18ab).  In Rev. 3:20 we read "I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me."  The peace-offering refers to that kind of a continuous soul-love-feast.

(2) The peace-offering was accepted by the Peace-Maker; "And having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven."  The cross is thus the great peace effecting agency.

2. Notice the nature of the offering and the law effecting its acceptance.  It could be a male or a female of the herds or of the flocks.  In all cases it had to be without blemish.  Certain bloodless offerings apparently could accompany this offering.

(1) The offerer led his offering up to the north side of that altar of death for it, but of peace for him.  The offerer than placed his hands upon its head.  It was then slain.  Its blood was sprinkled around about the altar, and taken into the presence of the Lord as was the blood of the sin-offering.

NOTE:  His soul peace went as far as the blood of his peace-offering               was taken—the presence of God.

(2) The valuable parts of the animal were then divided into three portions:  (a) All the fat of the inward areas, and certain organs were offered upon the altar of fire.  That was the Lord’s portion.  (b)  The breast of the animal was given to the community of priests, and the right hind leg was given to the officiating priest.  (c) The rest was eaten by the offerer himself. God and his people were all represented at that feast.

(3) The altar was also called:  "The table of the Lord," and the offering placed upon it was called: "The food of God."  Jesus gave his flesh to eat, and his blood to drink.  That is, he poured out his soul unto death for our peace.

NOTE:  Around that festive board we have Jehovah himself, his priests or ministers, and his redeemed people.  What a gathering!

(4) The value of that peace-offering is thus expressed  "For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and had broken down the middle wall of partition between us" (Eph. 2:14).  And again:  "For both he that sanctifieth, and they who are sanctified, are all of one:  for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren"  (Heb. 2:11).  The dividing partition had been removed by death (death on the cross), and both are now one.  Furthermore the Sanctifier and the sanctified are all of one (In Greek a neuter one, not referring to persons), and are brethren.  That is the kind of Brotherhood we believe in, and not in the Unitarian brand at all.

3. The peace-offering was also the occasion and symbol of great rejoicing.  It was offered at the dedication and completion of the tabernacle in the wilderness, and at the completion and dedication of Solomon’s temple on Mount Moriah (I Kings 8:63; II Chr. 7:1).


The Meat-Offering (Meal-Offering)
Lev. 2:1-16

1. This meat, meal, or food offering was the only strictly bloodless offering of the entire series of offerings.  It takes blood to bring a man up to the state of peace. This is different.

2. Although this offering was bloodless, yet it was offered upon the altar of burnt offerings.  That altar was Christ; so it should have been offered there. 

3. Notice also that before a person could offer the meal-offering he had first to offer the three previous offerings.  They referred to the death of Christ, being blood-offerings.  This refers primarily to life-teaching and life-example.  That phase of modernism that denies the saving efficacy of the blood and tries to cash in on Christ as example, does not have access to Christ as a spiritual example, having denied the three former offerings.

Just as a child has first to be born, then sheltered and fed, so must the soul first be born into the family of God, and protected and sheltered by the atonement before it has access to this meal-offering.

4. Notice the ingredients of this particular offering:

(1) The first mentioned is fine flour (evidently from wheat), oil, and frankincense.  Oil represented the presence of the Spirit, flour the staple commodity of food, and frankincense the delightful odor (perfume) that filled the tabernacle referring to the sweetness of the Spirit developing life.

(3) The second was an oblation baked in the oven as unleaven cakes of fine flour mingled with oil, and evidently overlaid with frankincense. 

(4) The third mentioned was made up on the first-fruits of green ears of corn dried by the fire: or corn beaten out of the full ear.  Oil and frankincense was to be placed thereon.

5. Some things were to be excluded from the meal-offering.

(1) Neither leaven nor honey was allowed in any of those offerings.  Both tended to spoil the offerings and eventually caused them to stink as fermentation set in.  Salt is to be used as salt is a preserving quality.  Jesus said to his disciples "Ye are the salt of the earth."  The ocean would be reeking pits of stench were it not for the salt that is in them.  Thus salt is good.

(2) With all corroding characteristics removed from the heart, and the preserving and illuminating grace of God in command, the soul then feasts with the Lord.  A good field of clover does not have to be fenced to keep the sheep in, but it ought to be fenced to keep the goats out.

6. The officiating priest burned a part of it on the altar of burnt offerings with the sacred fire.  The priests consumed the rest.

The priests represented believers in Christ:  "And hath made us kings and priests unto God, and his Father; to him be glory and dominion forever and ever"  (Rev. 1:6; Isaiah 55:2).


The Burnt-Offering
Lev. 1:1-17

Man, in his fallen state though redeemed, cannot serve God acceptably.  His service must therefore be covered and perfected by an aspect of the atonement.

1. If taken from the herd, a male without blemish was required.  It was flayed and cut into pieces, and then burned upon the altar.

2. Thus the rich and the poor could serve to the limit of their ability—the rich by giving animals of value, and the poor by giving birds (Mark 12:44).

(1) Just as that offering was wholly consumed upon the altar that represented Christ; so the life that has been fully redeemed and fully consecrated to God is to be wholly consumed in the service of God.

(2) In I Thess. 5:23 the word wholly refers to an unconditional, absolute and complete consecration to God preceding the experience of heart holiness.  Then being made h-o-l-y our consecration is operative or lived out actively.  We are thus wholly consumed, in a holy state, in the service of God.  This aspect is emphasized in Romans 12:1, 2, as well as the experience of heart holiness (Phil. 4:18; Lev. 1:9).  The whole-burnt offering embraces all aspects of the atonement-trespass, original sin, service.  The greater embraces the lesser.  This is also true of Romans 12: 1, 2.  Our service is perfected as well as our hearts.

(3) Our faulty service is thus perfected, and the sincere intentions of the heart for the glory of God are thus presented perfect at the throne of God through Christ (that is how a man may be perfect in God’s sight, and far from perfect in man’s sight).

(4) John says that he saw the "Lamb in the midst of the throne."  Symbolism is gone and reality is come.  The Lamb refers to the Victim, and the throne to the Victor.  The Victim becomes the Victor.

NOTE:  Any aspect of redemption may be taught from it.

        The Great Day of Atonement

1. It was the tenth day of the seventh month, and was a solemn Sabbath, and a day of feasting and affliction of the soul in remembrance of sin (Lev. 16).

(1) The ritual and the significance of the day of atonement were given to Moses by God immediately after the slaying of the two sons of Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, who presumptuously drew near without blood (Lev. 16:1;  10:1, 2).  The 16th chapter follows the 10th as far as events are concerned.

(2) The day of atonement completed the expiatory sacrifices of the year.  The sacrifices throughout the year all headed up to this day, and to Aaron who officiated on that day.  Without the sacrifices of this day of atonement the sacrifices of the year would be unfinished.

2. At other times Aaron, the high priest, supervised the other priests, but on this great day he was the acting figure, and the other priests merely assisted him.  He, and he alone, entered into the Holy of Holies.  While he was in the tabernacle of meeting, in either division, no one else was to enter.  (Christ, and Christ alone, effected salvation.—Isa. 63:1-5).

(1) Aaron bathed himself with water (not merely hands and feet as on usual occasions, but the whole body), and removed his priestly garments of glory and beauty, and put on the garments of the common priests (linen coat, linen breeches, linen girdle, and linen mitre), but he kept his white turban and golden crown with "holiness to Jehovah" written upon it (Lev. 16:4; Ex. 28:38).  Aaron was thus setting forth the eternity of Christ, and the humiliation of Christ by symbolizing his offices.

NOTE:  Then Jesus laid aside his glory, and robed himself in common humanity; but he did not lay aside his crown, or cease to be the eternal Christ.  He was still "Lord of all."

(2) Aaron then took a bullock for himself and his house, and two he-goats for a sin-offering; and also a ram for himself, and another for the people for a burnt-offering (Lev. 16:3, 5-7).

a. The two goats were presented before the tabernacle proper, facing the tabernacle with their backs to the people.  From an urn near by the high priest took two tongue-shaped scarlet pieces of cloth.  On one was written La-Jehovah, and on the other La-Azazel.  He laid them writing down at first, on the goats’ heads.  Then he turned the papers over to see how the lots had fallen.

NOTE:  Each step in the process took place in order as we are stating it.

b. The high priest then turned the goat around that drew La-Azazel until he was facing the people:  Each is now facing a different direction.

(3) Aaron then kills the bullock for the sin-offering for himself and for his house.  Evidently, then one of the priests stirred the blood of that sin-offering to keep it from coagulating. 

a. Aaron then took a censer full of burning coals from off the altar of burnt-offerings and two handfuls of beaten incense and brought them within the veil.  He either placed the coals on the ground and the incense upon them, or else placed the altar of incense inside of the veil for that aspect of the atonement (Lev. 16: 13; Heb. 9:4).  The burning of that incense filled the Holy of Holies with smoke to veil the divine glory.
(First entrance within the veil on the great day.)

b. Aaron then returned for the blood of the bullock of the sin-offering for Himself and his house, and then re-entered the Holy of Holies and sprinkled the blood upon the Mercy-Seat eastward, and before the Mercy-Seat seven times (either upon the ground, or upon the veil, or upon both (Lev. 16:14).

NOTE:  Apparently the altar of incense was in the holy place during the year, and within the holy of holies during the completion of the sacrifices of the year on this day. 
(Second entrance within the veil on that great day.)

c. Aaron then returned and took the goat for the people and placed both hands upon its head, and confessed the sin of the people over it, and then slew it.  He then did with its blood as he had done with the blood of the bullock for himself and for his house  (Lev. 16:15).

NOTE:  Those three times are three aspects of the self-same things hence the writer of Hebrews says he entered in once every year.
(Third entrance within the veil on that great day.)

d. Aaron then evidently mixed the blood of the bullock for himself, and of the goat for the people, and went out and made atonement (seven times) for the altar of incense.  Evidently it had been taken out of the Holy of Holies, and replaced in the Holy Place again (Ex. 30:10).  The Holy of Holies, and the Holy Place had to be figuratively cleansed because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel (Lev. 16:19).

e. Aaron then laid his hands on the head of the live remaining goat, and confessed over him all the sins and sin of the people, and then placed him in charge of a capable person who led him away into the wilderness, and left him there.

The two goats represent two different aspects of the same work of Christ:  one died for sin, and the other carried sin away—Christ by dying carried sin away.

3. Aaron then returned to the tabernacle of the congregation and removed his plain garments, and resumed his garments of glory and of beauty. Thus Christ clothed himself in a common humanity to effect redemption, but on its completion he resumed his garments of glory and beauty, and sat down on the right hand of God on high.  Aaron then offered a burnt-offering for himself and for the people.

(1) This second offering was not a definite part of the special offerings of the great day of atonement, but rather the daily yearly evening sacrifice.  Yet it was special in that it united the daily sacrifices with that of the great day of atonement.

(2) Paul studied all this for three years in Arabia in the area where God spake it all to Moses. Thus Paul just continued divine revelation where Moses left off, or removed the symbols and revealed the symbolized.

(3) Closing texts:  Psalm 103:12; Micah 7:19; Isaiah 38:17, 44: 34: Heb. 9:28.

(4) Closing sectional notes:  "All the sacrifices of Judaism culminated in the great act when the High Priest standing in the most Holy and most sacred spot in all the world sprinkled blood upon the mercy-seat eastward, and before the mercy-seat sprinkled of the blood with his finger seven times (Lev. 16:14).

(5) "Thus the crowning height of the Jewish ritual was attained when the blood of the great national sacrifices was offered, not only before God, but with special reference to covering up of the broken and accusing law before the mercy-seat.

(6) "No wonder that on either side of it and moulded of the same mass of metal were the cherubims in an attitude of adoration, with outspread wings covering it, their faces bent, not only as bowing in reverence before the divine presence, but as we expressly read: ‘Toward the mercy-seat shall the faces of the cherubim be.’ For the meaning of this great symbol was among the things which the angels desire to look into.

(7) We can not understand how much was gained when God said, ‘There will I meet with you, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy-seat’" (Lev. 16:22).


1. Moses knew that he was setting up a symbolic order that was to be fulfilled to the letter in the Person of a greater than himself:  "The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren,…unto him ye shall hearken (Deut. 18:15; Acts 3:22; Luke 13:33; 24:19).

2. Jesus stated that Moses, the prophets, and the Psalms wrote and spoke of him:  "For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me; for he wrote of me"  (John 5:46; Luke 24:27, 44, 45).

3. Thus the early sacrifices, the tabernacle and the temple, the altars, and beasts of sacrifice, and the mediating priesthood all passed away when the veil was torn in twain from the top to the bottom.  Just as Cain and Abel entered God’s presence as their own priests, so every person is now his own earthly priest, and may, if he so desires enter into the Holy of Holies through the veil, "that is to say, his flesh."  Stephen was stoned for this truth, and Paul was pushed out of the Jewish group of believers because of this truth, and the author of the Hebrew Letter wrote to sustain it.

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