“In the Old Testament, by His deeds, His promises, the prophecies, temple worship and sacrifices, etc., God preached to His people the gospel of salvation through the coming Messiah. Today, in addition to the witness of the OT, we have the gospel clearly taught and proclaimed to us in the New Testament. And by grace alone through faith alone because of Christ’s person and finished work alone, we are saved from wrath and have received God’s free gift of eternal life.” – Pastor Glem Melo
By Pastor Glem Melo
Rhyse Furio, a dear friend who lives in Lebanon, asked me questions that led to an enjoyable discussion on Facebook.
Why did God require the Israelites to make all those sacrifices? I thought their purpose was to cleanse the Israelites from their sin?
Hebrews 9:13 says that Old Testament sacrifices only provided outward purification (“sanctify for the purification of the flesh” with emphasis on “flesh”), unlike Christ’s sacrifice which provides inward purification (verse 14: ”purify our conscience from dead works” with emphasis on “conscience”).
So why did God institute the sacrificial system of the Old Testament? He did so to teach the Israelites and us about:
1. Our sinfulness and inexcusable guilt before Him
2. His unfathomable holiness and wrath against sin
3. His mercy and grace in providing a way of atonement by substitution and imputation
4. What Christ has done for us through His sufferings…
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