Sermon #15                                                     Leviticus Sermons


     Title:       God’s People – God’s Priests

     Text:       Leviticus 6:14-23

     Subject:  The Believer’s Priesthood

     Date:       Sunday Morning – August 5, 2001

     Tape #    W-54b

     Reading: Psalm 132:1-18



Christianity recognizes no earthly priesthood. The very thought of calling a sinful man a priest is blasphemous! And it is the height of sinful pride and base blasphemy for any man to call himself a priest, a mediator, an advocate, a confessor, between God and men.

·        Call no man father, because God alone is our Father.

·        Call no man master, because Christ alone is our Master.

·        Call no man holy, or reverend, because our Savior’s name alone is “holy and reverend.”

·        Call no man priest, because Christ alone is our great High Priest.


One Mediator


There is only one Mediator between God and men; and that one Mediator is the Man Christ Jesus. (Not Mary. -- Not the Pope. – Not some sissified looking man in funny looking clothes.)


     He who is my Priest must be able to stand in the holy place on his own merit before God. He must have a sacrifice God will accept for the ransom of my soul. He must be a man who is himself God. – He who is my Advocate with the Father must be perfectly righteous himself and one whose righteousness avails for me. – He who is my Mediator must be THE MAN who is God’s own fellow. Christ alone qualifies!


A Royal Priesthood


However, our Lord Jesus Christ is a Priest of such merit and efficacy that he has, by the merits of his blood and righteousness and by the power and grace of his Holy Spirit, made all who trust him both kings and priests unto God (Rev. 1:4-6; 1 Pet 2:9).


[Revelation 1:4-6]  John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne; [5] And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, [6] And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.


[1 Peter 2:9]  But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:


Proposition: The title of my message is God’s PeopleGod’s Priests. – All who are saved by the grace of God enter into that which is within the veil by the blood of atonement and do business with God himself in the holy place, being accepted in Christ (Heb. 4:16; 10:19-22[1]). As such, we offer sacrifices well-pleasing to God (Heb. 13:15-16).


[Hebrews 13:15-16]  By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. [16] But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.


     With that in mind, I want you to turn with me to Leviticus 6:14-23. In this passage the Holy Spirit gives us a beautiful, instructive picture of the believer’s priesthood in Christ[2]. May God the Holy Spirit teach us how we are to live before and serve our God as “a royal priesthood.


Divisions: As we go through this passage together, I will call your attention to three things portrayed in “the law of the meat-offering” as it related to the priests of Israel.

1. The Act of Consecration (v. 14)

2. The Acceptance of the Worshipper (vv. 15-16)

3. The Gift of God (vv. 17-23)


I. First, in verse 14, we see the act of consecration. Aaron and his sons were required to bring their meat-offering to the Lord. This was an act of publicly avowed consecration.


[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.


     Throughout the Scriptures, those who believed God, by one means or another, publicly identified themselves with Christ, his gospel and his people.

·        Circumcision

·        Baptism – Church Membership

·        The Sacrifices

Should anyone think such a public confession of faith in and consecration to Christ is unimportant, let him ask Moses (Ex. 4:24-26).


     Here the priest was required to take the meat offering from the Israelite who brought it and solemnly present it before the Lord, before the altar, that is to say in view of the congregation of the Lord. This meat offering symbolized that he and all that he possessed (his body, his property, his soul, his very life) belonged to God. He publicly declared to God and all who stood before him, “I am not my own. I have been bought with a price. I do, this day, publicly declare that I have given over the rule of my life to God my Savior and Redeemer.”


My life, my all I give to Thee,

Thou Lamb of God who died for me.

O may I ever faithful be,

My Savior and my God!


II. Second, in verses 15-16, we see the acceptance of the worshipper in the acceptance of his offering.


[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.


1.     The oil was an emblem of God the Holy Spirit. – Our acceptance with God is in no way the result of the Holy Spirit’s work of grace in us. We were made “accepted in the Beloved” from eternity (Eph. 1:3-6). Our acceptance with God is the result of Christ’s blood atonement, as the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. But there is no knowledge of this acceptance, no knowledge of electing love and blood atonement until God the Holy Spirit brings the oil of grace into our hearts in regeneration.


2.     The frankincense upon the meat offering represented the sweet incense of Christ merit, interceding for us in heaven. – Once God the Holy Spirit has called the sinner, giving him life and faith in Christ, the believing sinner is assured of his acceptance with God in Christ, by the merit of his blood and righteousness (Rom. 8:33-34).


[Romans 8:33-34]  Who shall lay any thing to the charge of God's elect? It is God that justifieth. [34] Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.


3.     The meat offering, burned upon the altar, with the sweet savor of the smoke of the frankincense, as a memorial to the Lord, declared both the complete consecration of the worshipper and God’s acceptance of him and his sacrifice.


     When the memorial offering was taken and burned, the worshipper saw a sight that must have both refreshed and overwhelmed his soul He saw the altar of God smoking and smelled the sweet incense. Breathing the smoke of the incense, he breathed the fresh air of divine approval and acceptance! Seeing God’s salvation in Christ and knowing the blessedness of it, the believing sinner must have shouted for joy (Ps. 132:16).


[Psalms 132:16]  I will also clothe her priests with salvation: and her saints shall shout aloud for joy.


[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.


     That which remained of the meat offering, the priests’ portion, was to be eaten unleavened in the holy place, as it were, upon holy ground. Since that which was burned with fire was holy, that which remained was holy. There was nothing impure or defiling in it.


     Here is a ransomed sinner standing upon holy ground, feasting before the Lord. When our Lord Jesus Christ was offered as a burnt offering and a sweet savor to God in our room and stead, that which remained (his body, the church) was made pure and holy before God, justified and freely admitted into communion and fellowship with the holy Lord God.

·        In Christ we are worthy worshippers (1 Cor. 11)!

·        Worthy of God’s acceptance!

·        Worthy of Heavenly Glory (Col. 1:12)!


[Colossians 1:12]  Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.


     The holy place” where the priest was required to eat the meat offering was the court of the tabernacle (v. 26), where the altar and laver stood. It is called the holy place for the same reason that Peter called the mount of transfiguration “the holy mount” (2 Pet. 1:18), and the place where God revealed himself to Moses in the burning bush was called “holy ground” (Ex. 3:5). – Like that priest of old, eating the sacrifice in the holy place, you and I, God’s priests stand in the holy place, upon holy ground in Christ.

·        This is the place of sacrifice. – The Altar!

·        This is the place of cleansing. – The Laver!

·        This is the door of heaven. – The Door of the Tabernacle.

·        This is the place of forgiveness.

·        This is the place of God’s presence.

·        This is the place of divine revelation and instruction.

·        This is the place of divine communion.


III. Third, in verses 17-23, the Lord God plainly declares that the salvation portrayed in this and the other sacrifices is the gift of God


[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.


     This bread was not to be treated as ordinary, common bread. God required that no leaven be mixed with it. It was to be eaten unleavened specifically because it was God’s gift. All its sweetness, all the relish of its taste was to be derived from this fact: -- “I have given it unto them for their portion.


A. Salvation is the gift of God.


It takes very little thought to understand the significance of this. God’s Gift is Christ. He is our Portion, and our Salvation! He is the heavenly Gift, the gift of God to his people. The sweetness and joy expressed in Hannah’s song was not found in Samuel, but in God who gave him. Therefore she sang, “My heart rejoices in the Lord, my horn is exalted in the Lord” (1 Sam. 2:1).


[Psalms 16:5]  The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot.


[Psalms 73:26]  My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.


[Psalms 119:57]  Thou art my portion, O LORD: I have said that I would keep thy words.


[Lamentations 3:24]  The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.


[James 1:17]  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.


[John 4:10]  Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water.


[Romans 5:15-18]  But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. [16] And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. [17] For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) [18] Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.


[Romans 6:23]  For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.


[Ephesians 2:8-9]  For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: [9] Not of works, lest any man should boast.


[2 Corinthians 9:15]  Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.


B. God’s salvation in Christ, indeed, Christ himself, is the gift of God to be enjoyed.


The Lord God declares, “I have given it as their portion of MY offerings.” He thereby declares that all that is in Christ are as community goods belonging equally to God himself and to all his people. – “All things are yours, for ye are Christ’s and Christ is God’s!


1.       What joy there is here! – God and his people find satisfaction in and feed upon the same Bread! – Christ! – If ever a sinner comes to experience the bountiful free grace of God in Christ, he will leap and dance before the Lord like David before the ark.

2.       What grace there is here! – The smallest service done for Christ, the slightest gift offered to God by him, is declared by God himself to be “most holy!” – These were only cakes of flour. Yet, God counts them as valuable in his sight as the sin offering and the trespass offering. Do you see that? -- “It is most holy, as is the sin offering, and as the trespass offering.”

·        A Cup of Cold Water

·        The Widow’s Mite

·        The Alabaster Box of Ointment


C. Nothing evokes reverence and awe like a free gift of great value and sacrifice, given in love, grace, and kindness. – So it is with the Gift of God! Read verse 18.


[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.


1.     This gift was eaten with great reverence.

2.     The man eating the gift knew that God reckoned him to be holy because of Christ. – Touching the Bread of Life, eating the Bread of Life, we are holy!

3.     Nothing is more blissful than the assurance of our acceptance with God and nothing more awesome. Bethel was the gate of heaven, the house of God. Yet, no place was more dreadful, more consuming to proud flesh, more demanding of reverence.


[Psalms 89:7]  God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about him.


D. Being reckoned holy God’s people are a holy, royal priesthood, anointed of God for holy service in the holy place (vv. 19-23).


1.     Believers are anointed as priests with that anointing which only Christ can give. We have the Holy Spirit as an unction from the Holy One, and by that Spirit we offer continual sacrifice to our God day and night (Phil. 3:3).


[Leviticus 6:19-20]  And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, [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.


2.     Believers bring their gifts of worship (“the tenth part of an ephah of fine flour) as gifts representing their entire consecration to God. – True worship is the outflow of genuine devotion.

·        The Old Testament Tithe

·        Our Gifts


3.     God’s priests bring their gifts of worship fully prepared. – Nothing about the worship and service of our God is flippant, half-hearted, or thoughtless. – This meat offering was brought to the house of God fully baked.


[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.


4. Our worship, praise, gratitude, and devotion to our God, arises from and is accepted because of an offering fully consumed upon the altar by the fire of God’s holy wrath.


     Verses 22-23 tell us of another priest who offers the sacrifice. As Bonar put it, “The ministering high priest already in office presented the offering of the sons of Aaron on the day of their consecration.”


[Leviticus 6:22-23]  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. [23] For every meat offering for the priest shall be wholly burnt: it shall not be eaten.


     This sacrifice was for God alone. It was not to be eaten. It pictures Christ our Savior, who gave himself entirely and completely as a sacrifice to God for us. This refers to him alone. He who is our Substitute, our Mediator, our High Priest, our Savior gave himself entirely, body and soul, to the consuming flames of divine justice. “Our God is a consuming fire!” And the fire of God’s wrath withered our Redeemer’s very soul as he was made to be sin for us and endured for us the curse of divine justice. Yet, he who was consumed by the fire consumed the fire for us. Now, we who fully deserved God’s wrath have free, permanent access to God by him, as priests of the most high God.


[Hebrews 4:16]  Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.


[Hebrews 10:19-22]  Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, [20] By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; [21] And having an high priest over the house of God; [22] Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.


[Hebrews 13:15-16]  By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. [16] But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.


Application: God’s people are God’s priests…


1.     Consecrated to God.

2.     Accepted by God.

3.     Possessing the Gift of God.

4.     Serving in the Holy Place.

[1] [Hebrews 4:16]  Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.


[Hebrews 10:19-22]  Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, [20] By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; [21] And having an high priest over the house of God; [22] Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.

[2] Without question, Aaron and his sons were primarily typical of Christ himself. However, as it is impossible to separate Christ from his people, they are also, in many ways, typical of God’s servants (gospel preachers – 1 Cor. 9:13) and of God’s people (1 Pet. 2:9.