Have Sacrifices Ceased Forever?

Introduction

“Since Jesus died and rose again, and was the sacrifice and fulfillment of the sacrifices, there is no need for sacrifices again, right?”

Sacrifices Cannot Remove Sin

Hebrews 10:1 For the Torah, having a shadow of good things to come—and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect.

 

Hebrews 10:11  And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. 12But this man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God 13from henceforth expecting till His enemies be made his footstool.

 

Why do sacrifices if they cannot remove sin?

 

The Knowledge of Sin

Romans 3:20  Therefore by the deeds of the Torah there shall be no flesh justified in His sight. For by the Torah is the knowledge of sin.

 

The Torah (the first six books of the Bible) gave the knowledge of sin. The sacrifices are a central part of the Torah, making thoughtful sacrificers aware of the sinfulness of sin.

 

The next few paragraphs consider sacrifices and what they show.

 

The Sacrifices Had to Be Perfect

Exodus 12:5  Your lamb shall be perfect, a male of the first year. Ye shall take it from the sheep or from the goats.

 

Exodus 29:1 And this is the thing that thou shalt do unto them to hallow them to minister unto me in the priest’s office: Take one young bullock, and two perfect rams…

 

Leviticus 1:3 If his offering is a burnt sacrifice of the herd, he shall offer a perfect male. He shall offer it of his own voluntary will at the door of the Tent of Appointment before Yehovah.

 

Leviticus 1:10 And if his offering is of the flocks, namely, of the sheep, or of the goats, for a burnt sacrifice, he shall bring it a perfect male.

 

Leviticus 3:1 And if his oblation is a sacrifice of peace offering, if he offer it of the herd, whether it be a male or female, he shall offer it perfect before Yehovah.

 

Leviticus 3:6 And if his offering for a sacrifice of peace offering unto Yehovah be of the flock, male or female, he shall offer it perfect.

 

Leviticus 4:3  If the priest that is anointed do sin according to the sin of the people, then he shall bring for his sin that he hath sinned a young perfect bullock unto Yehovah for a sin offering.

 

The sacrifices had to be perfect. Whatever they portray must also be perfect. (The translation without blemish is inaccurate. Only a few Hebrew texts have without blemish.)

 

Blood Shedding is Required

Hebrews 9:22  And almost all things are by the Torah purged with blood. And without shedding of blood is no remission.

 

Exodus 12:6  And ye shall keep it until the fourteenth day of the same month. And the whole assembly of the congregation of Israel shall slaughter it in the evening.

 

Exodus 12:21 Then Moses called for all the elders of Israel. And he said unto them, “Draw out and take you a lamb according to your families, and slaughter the passover.”

 

Exodus 29:11  And thou shalt slaughter the bullock before Yehovah, by the door of the Tent of Appointment.

 

Exodus 29:20  Then shalt thou slaughter the ram, and take of his blood, and put it upon the tip of the right ear of Aaron, and upon the tip of the right ear of his sons, and upon the thumb of their right hand, and upon the great toe of their right foot, and sprinkle the blood upon the altar round about.

 

Leviticus 1:5  And he shall slaughter the bullock before Yehovah. And the priests, Aaron’s sons, shall bring the blood, and sprinkle the blood round about upon the altar that is by the door of the Tent of Appointment.

 

Leviticus 1:11  And he shall slaughter it on the side of the altar northward before Yehovah. And the priests, Aaron’s sons, shall sprinkle his blood round about upon the altar.

 

Leviticus 3:2  And he shall lay his hand upon the head of his offering, and slaughter it at the door of the Tent of Appointment. And Aaron’s sons the priests shall sprinkle the blood upon the altar round about.

 

Leviticus 3:8  And he shall lay his hand upon the head of his offering, and slaughter it before the Tent of Appointment. And Aaron’s sons shall sprinkle the blood thereof round about upon the altar.

 

All animals sacrificed were slaughtered to shed the blood, sometimes also sprinkling it. Whatever the sacrifices portray must also include blood shedding and sometimes sprinkling.

 

Vicarious Covering

The slaughtered animals typify (picture) the Messiah. Whenever anyone takes the place or role of another, he is being a vicar (a stand-in). If an Israeli sinned, he would bring an animal that would die in his place, picturing Messiah Who would truly die in the sinner’s place.

 

If an Israeli wanted to do certain kinds of non-sin-sacrifices involving animals, the animals were slaughtered, picturing the price Messiah paid for the relationships described by these sacrifices. One such sacrifice was called the sacrifice of the peaces (in Hebrew):

 

Leviticus 3:1 And if his oblation be a sacrifice of the peaces, if he offer it of the herd, whether it be a male or female, he shall offer it perfect before Yehovah.

 

Leviticus 3:3  And he shall offer from the sacrifice of the peaces, an offering made by fire unto Yehovah.

 

Leviticus 3:6 And if his offering for a sacrifice of the peaces unto Yehovah be of the flock, male or female, he shall offer it without blemish.

 

Some sacrifices are coverings:

 

Exodus 29:36  And the bull of the sin sacrifice thou shalt make to the day above the coverings. And Thou shalt sin-sacrifice upon the altar via thy covering upon him. And thou shalt anoint him to sanctify him.

 

Exodus 29:37  Seven days thou shalt cover upon the altar. And thou shalt sanctify him. And the altar shall be holy of holies. Every toucher in the altar shall be holy.

 

Exodus 30:10  And Aaron shall cover upon his [the altar’s] horns once in the year from the blood of the sin-sacrifice of the coverings. Once in the year he will cover upon him to your generations. Holy of holies is he to Yehovah.

 

Exodus 30:15  The rich-person shall not multiply and the poor-person shall not diminish from the divided shekel to give the elevating of Yehovah to cover upon your beings.

 

Exodus 30:16  And thou shalt take the silver of the coverings from with the children of Israel. And thou shalt give him upon the service of the Tent of Appointment. And he shall be for the children of Israel for a remembrance to the faces of Yehovah to cover upon your beings.

 

Exodus 32:30 And it was from the next day. And Moshe said unto the People, “Ye, ye sinned a big sin. And now I will ascend unto Yehovah. Perhaps I will cover for the sake of your sin!”

 

A covering that had to be repeated did not accomplish a permanent goal:

 

Hebrews 10:11  And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins.

 

Wages of Sin is Death

The sin sacrifice, one of several kinds of sacrifices, pictured the results of sin:

 

Romans 6:23  For the wages of sin is death.

 

The sinner had to lay his hands on the animal, then slaughter it:

 

Leviticus 4:29 And he shall lay his hand upon the head of the sin sacrifice. And he shall slaughter the sin sacrifice in the place of the ascension.

 

By this means, the sinner pictured transferring his sin to the animal. More of the text shows more of the picture:

 

Leviticus 4:30 And the priest shall take from her blood via his finger. And he shall give upon the horns of the altar of the ascension. And all her blood he will pour unto the foundation of the altar. 31And all her fat he will remove just as the fat was removed from upon the sacrifice of the Peaces. And the priest shall incense altarward for a fragrance of sweetness to Yehovah. And the priest shall cover upon him. And he shall be pardoned for him.

 

Some Obvious Details

The sacrifices could be expensive. They were done in public, and a careful observer could determine the kind of sacrifice (whether for sin or some other reason). The sacrifices requiring blood were messy and bloody, and required traveling to an appropriate place and arranging with an appropriate priest. Mere private confession was not an option. When sin is troublesome and costly, folks tend to see it in a different light.

 

“Wasn’t Christ’s Sacrifice Final, Eliminating the Need for Sacrifices?”

 

If Yeshua’s Sacrifice succeeded in stopping all sin and sinning, it eliminated the need for further sacrificing. His sacrifice was final, covering the sin of the world:

 

John 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world!”

 

The world did not take advantage. Yeshua’s sacrifice will not profit most of the world’s populations. The need for some demonstration of sin’s price and damage is necessary while sin is in the world. Sacrifices will be abolished once sin has been eradicated.

 

Sacrifices will be necessary to teach the non-Jewish races even when Israel and Israelis no longer sin. The following texts show that the Israelis will not sin after sin has been removed from Israel:

 

Jeremiah 31:31 “Behold, the days come,” saith  Yehovah. And I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah–32not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, which my covenant they brake although I was an husband unto them,” saith  Yehovah. 33And this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” saith  Yehovah. “I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. 34And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour and every man his brother, saying, ‘Know  Yehovah!’ For they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them,” saith Yehovah. For I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”

 

Zephaniah 3:13  The remnant of Israel shall not do iniquity, nor speak lies. And a deceitful tongue shall not be found in their mouth. For they shall feed and lie down, and none shall make them afraid.

 

Sacrifices will continue, however:

 

Hosea 3:4  For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and without teraphim. 5Afterward the children of Israel shall return and seek Yehovah their God and David their king. And they shall fear Yehovah and His goodness in the latter days.

 

Psalm 51:18  Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion. Build thou the walls of Jerusalem. 19Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with ascending sacrifices and whole ascending sacrifices. And they shall offer bullocks upon thine altar.

 

(At the time this psalm was penned, the walls of Jerusalem were in fine condition. This text has to refer to an event after King David’s day.)

 

Isaiah 19:18 In that day five cities in the land of Egypt shall speak the language of Canaan, and swear to Yehovah of hosts. One shall be called Sun City. 19In that day shall there be an altar to Yehovah in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof to Yehovah. 20And it shall be for a sign and for a witness unto Yehovah of hosts in the land of Egypt. For they shall cry unto Yehovah because of the oppressors, and He shall send them a saviour and a great one, and he shall deliver them. 21And Yehovah shall be known to Egypt, and the Egyptians shall know Yehovah in that day, and shall do sacrifice and oblation. Indeed, they shall vow a vow unto Yehovah, and perform!

 

Egypt will be doing sacrifices at this future event.

 

Isaiah 56:4  For thus saith Yehovah unto the eunuchs that keep my sabbaths and choose the things that please me, and take hold of my covenant, 5even unto them will I give in mine house and within my walls a place and a name better than of sons and of daughters. I will give them an everlasting name that shall not be cut off. 6Also the sons of the stranger who join themselves to Yehovah to serve Him and to love the Name of Yehovah, to be His servants, every one that keepeth the sabbath from polluting it and taketh hold of my covenant, 7even them will I bring to the mountain of my holy-one, and make them joyful in my House of prayer. Their ascendings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar. For mine House shall be called an House of prayer for all peoples.

 

Yehovah will accept their sacrifices. If Christ’s sacrifice eliminated the need for sacrifices, why would Yehovah approve of these future ones?

 

Only Certain Animals Qualify As Sacrifices

Yehovah specified which animals to sacrifice. No unclean (none kosher) animal (a pig, for example) could be used, and only a few kinds of clean animals. A non-priest Israeli could not use a bull, for example, but the High Priest had to use a bull. Every animal pictured some important aspect of human or Godly behaviour, and the animals chosen for specific sacrifices manifested the best characteristics for those sacrifices. While I cannot give specifics to prove or show evidence of this, Yehovah only allowed certain animals to be used sacrificially, and He always has a reason for every choice. The study of types (real persons, things, times, etc. standing for real persons, things, times, etc. that are far more important) covers this field. Types have never been abolished, and sacrifices are types.

 

Today’s Lost Sense of Sin

Few today know the significance of sin. When sacrifices were a part of life, some folks considered sin’s significance and manifest evil, even if many chose to ignore them. The most serious student of the character of God, righteousness and evil will be hard-pressed to grasp sin’s ruination as long as sacrifices are merely a matter of historical (or future) record.

 

I have witnessed and heard approved missionaries showing great flippancy and lightness regarding sin. All proponents of teachings like “God knows that we will sin on occasion, and He has provided forgiveness for us” demonstrate their unfitness for the Kingdom of God and their contempt for His sacrifice, no matter how they express emotions when speaking about the nails being driven into His hands. Were they to lay hands on a sheep or goat lamb, then slit the animal’s throat each time they sin, paying for the animal, they might have a change of view, avoiding sin with at least as much zeal as a speeding ticket. This will not happen, however, and they will continue to give license to sin on the basis of the lie, “Nobody’s perfect.”

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