As the children of Israel were in the wilderness Moses was given the set of instructions, by God, concerning the need for personal sacrifice. He commanded what type of sacrifice was to be brought and the qualifications of that sacrifice. The list of requirements was very specific as to what would be, and what would not be, accepted. It was stipulated the animal being sacrificed must be perfect. It was essential it be without spot and completely absent of all blemishes. It had to be perfect. The sacrifice was to be delivered to the priest who was required to inspect it to be certain all the criteria, and all the demands, given by God, were met.
It was no doubt an interesting situation, from time to time, as the members of the congregation would bring their sacrifices to be offered. Undoubtedly there would be those coming to the tabernacle, bringing their sacrifice who the priest knew on a personal level. Perhaps it was a neighbor who lived in the next tent or someone they would regularly encounter during the course of ordinary day to day living.
As the animal was being presented, it could have been difficult, at times, for the priest not to consider his own opinions. Perhaps there had been previous occasions when the worshiper and the priest had experienced arguments or disagreements. Perhaps in the mind of the priest there would be a thought or a belief that surely this worshiper was not worthy to have their sins covered.
While there would be others who came, who in the opinion of the priest, were so gracious and so wonderful they had little if any need for forgiveness.
The opinions of the priest could have been true and quite possibly correct. Because in the course of fulfilling the duty of the priesthood there would be those who would come before him who were wicked and despicable while there would be many who were kind and loving. They were dealing with humanity and humans tend to run the full spectrum from terrible to terrific with many degrees in between.
But it’s important to notice the priest’s feelings, his opinions and his beliefs were of little consequence. He was not instructed to judge, or examine, the worshiper, he had been commanded to simply examine the sacrifice.
Year after year, day after day, over and over again, the people of Israel were continually bringing their sacrifices. And with each one it was the job of the priest to examine the lamb to be certain of its perfection.
But God in his infinite mercy had a better plan for mankind. Clothing himself in flesh, he came in to this world. He dwelt among men. He provided himself as the flawless and perfect final sacrifice. The only sacrifice which was able to provide the pure, and perfect, blood capable of redeeming fallen man and releasing him from the sins of his past.
This sacrifice had to be made because soon there is coming day, a day of final judgement. A place of accounting where all the linage of Adam’s race, must appear. As we stand before the God of god’s and the King of kings, God himself will be the great high priest on that day. He will take upon himself the responsibility of examining the sacrifices we bring.
It is my desire that on that day He not see me as I am in my humanity. If he were to examine me he would uncover my true nature. He would find frailty and failure. He would discover disappointment and defeat. He would see my shame and my sin. He would find me to be completely unworthy and totally undeserving.
But the sacrifice I desire to bring and offer, for his examination, is the flawless redeeming lamb of Golgotha. For when he examines that sacrifice he will find it to be perfect and without blemish. At the great and final judgement it is my desire that God not see me for what I am but that He might see the sacrifice I bring, the spotless and unblemished perfect Lamb of Calvary.