“Anything that touches the offerings will become holy…If someone touches anything unclean…and eats meat from the Lord’s fellowship sacrifice, that person must be cut off from his people” (Leviticus 6:18, 7:2, HCSB).
Leviticus Chapters 6 and 7 contain descriptions of the five offerings of the ancient Jewish sacrificial system and instructions to the priests in conducting these offerings.
There’s an important principle about holiness revealed in these guidelines that’s particularly important for spiritual development.
Simply defined, holiness is an attribute of God indicating He is separate or distinct from His creation. God is not defined by His creation, but His attributes may be demonstrated or displayed in His creation.
So contact or association with God can make something holy. Conversely, something that is unclean or unholy cannot be associated or have fellowship with God because God by His own nature is holy.
The burnt offering, sin offering, and guilt or restitution offering signified atonement and were offered to manage personal or collective sin.
The grain offering signified thanksgiving for God’s provision (first fruits of the harvest). Through these offerings God imputed holiness to the penitent or thankful person.
But the fellowship offering referenced by these verses signified an existing relationship with God (and by implication already imputed holiness) and so a strict prohibition about contact with anything that was defiled accompanied this offering.
In 1 Corinthians 11 the Apostle Paul applies this principle to participation in the Lord’s Supper or communion: “Whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy way will be guilty of sin against the body and blood of the Lord. So a man should examine himself; in this way he should eat the bread and drink from the cup. For whoever eats and drinks without recognizing the body, eats and drinks judgment on himself” (1 Corinthians 11:27-29, HCSB).
The sacred place where God now dwells is in human hearts. He places His very presence—the Holy Spirit—in our lives, in our spirits, to make us like walking fellowship offerings.
The Holy Spirit dwells in us and enables us to live righteously for God and be transformed into the likeness of Jesus.
Because the indwelling Holy Spirit imputes God’s holiness and makes us separate from this world, we should continually examine ourselves to be sure that no impurities from this world work their way into our lives to defile our fellowship with God.
And the Holy Spirit will enable us to live holy lives in this present world in order to prepare us for eternal life with the One who is eternally holy!
“Don’t you know that your body is a sanctuary of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God?” (I Corinthians 6:19, HCSB)
- The Discerning Christian – Leviticus 10:10 (stevesbiblemeditations.com)