If you’ve ever read through Leviticus, you may have wondered why God gave the Israelites so many rules and details about sacrifices and worship procedures. When I was a boy, I remember thinking all those cows could have fed a lot of people. To me, the sacrifices seemed like a big waste, but that’s because I didn’t understand what the Lord was teaching His people.
Today we have the finished Scriptures to help us understand who God is and what He desires of us. But in the days of the Old Testament, He taught His people by example. He wanted them to grasp three things: His holiness; their sinfulness and the consequences of disobedience; and His care for them—that He was the source of every good thing. The rules and regulations He instituted were visible object lessons.
In every detail, He revealed His holiness—and in every sacrifice, the cost of sin. The rules of the tabernacle taught the people not to take worship lightly. It was a serious and awesome privilege to approach a holy, righteous God.
Today, it’s rather easy to lose sight of the Lord’s holiness. To prevent that, try re-examining the Old Testament sacrificial system for a fresh perspective on the seriousness of worship.
God is our heavenly Father, and we have instant access to His throne room. Yet we should think about whether we’re treating Him with the reverence He deserves. At church, instead of being preoccupied and distracted, we should understand what a privilege it is to come into His presence.