3. The Continual Burnt Offering—a Living Sacrifice
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  • 01-27,
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Scripture Reading: Lev. 1:3-4, 8-9; 6:9, 12a, 13; Heb. 12:29; Rom. 12:1
I. The burnt offering typifies Christ not mainly in His redeeming man from sin but in His living a life that is absolutely for God and in His being the life that enables God’s people to have such a living—Lev. 1:3; John 5:19, 30; 6:38; 7:18; 2 Cor. 5:15; Gal. 2:19-20:
A. In Leviticus the first offering that is mentioned is not the sin offering or the trespass offering but the burnt offering—1:3:
1. We need Christ first as our burnt offering because our first situation before God, our first problem related to God, is not a matter of trespasses but of not being for God:
a. God created us to be His expression and His representation—Gen. 1:26.
b. God created us that we might be for Him; He did not create us for ourselves, but as fallen human beings, we live for ourselves, not for Him.
2. The burnt offering means that as those who were created by God for the purpose of expressing and representing Him, we should be for nothing other than God—vv. 27-28; cf. Psa. 73:25; Mark 12:30.
3. We need to realize that we are not absolutely for God and that in ourselves we cannot be absolutely for God, and then we need to take Christ as our burnt offering—Lev. 1:3-4:
a. Christ as our burnt offering is completely for God, absolutely for God—John 4:34; 5:30; Heb. 10:8-10.
b. Whatever the Lord Jesus was, whatever He spoke, and whatever He did was absolutely for God—John 6:38; 5:17, 36, 43; 8:28; 10:25; 12:49-50.
B. John 7 reveals that Christ was fully qualified to be the burnt offering:
1. As One who lived a restricted life—a life restricted from doing things for the self—the Lord sought the glory of God for God’s satisfaction—vv. 3-9, 18.
2. In verses 16 through 18 we see that the Lord Jesus did not seek His own glory in that He did not speak from Himself; He sought the glory of the One who sent Him.
3. John 7 reveals that the Lord Jesus was a person restricted by God, that He was of God, that He was sent by God and came from God, and that He did not speak His own words but spoke God—v. 18; 12:49-50.
4. When the Lord spoke God’s word, God was expressed through His speaking; God came forth from Him through His speaking—7:17-18.
5. In John 7 we see that the Lord Jesus is the reality of the burnt offering, for He lived a life that was restricted by God and wholly for God.
II. The Divine Trinity is revealed in the type of the burnt offering—Lev. 1:3, 8-9:
A. The crucial items revealing the Divine Trinity in verses 3, 8, and 9 are the burnt offering, the Tent of Meeting, Jehovah, the priest, the fire, and the water.
B. The burnt offering typifies Christ as the food for God’s satisfaction—v. 3.
C. The Tent of Meeting typifies Christ the Son as the place of offering—vv. 1, 3:
1. The offerings were offered at the entrance of the Tent of Meeting; in order for an offering to be legitimate, it could not be offered anywhere else.
2. In order to offer anything to God, we must take Christ as the ground of our offering.
D. In Leviticus 1, because Christ the Son is offered to Jehovah, Jehovah refers to the Father as the Receiver of the offering—v. 3.
E. In verses 8 and 9 the priest who served the offering typifies Christ the Son as the serving One—our great High Priest and a Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek—Heb. 4:14-15; 5:5-6; 7:17.
F. As typified by the burnt offering, the Tent of Meeting, and the priest, Christ the Son is simultaneously the offering, the place of the offering, and the One who serves the offering—Lev. 1:3, 8.
G. The fire signifies God as the accepting agent—vv. 8-9:
1. Fire consumes and devours; God accepted the offering by burning it.
2. The fire that burned the burnt offering was God Himself; it was God’s mouth—Heb. 12:29.
3. The burning of the burnt offering was the divine eating—Num. 28:2.
H. The water that washed the inward parts and legs of the burnt offering signifies the Spirit as the washing agent; Christ’s inward parts and His daily walk were continually being washed by the Holy Spirit to keep Him from being defiled by His contact with earthly things—Lev. 1:9; John 7:38-39.
I. In Leviticus 1:3, 8, and 9 we see that the entire Divine Trinity is involved in the burnt offering.
III. Today in our Christian life and church life, there is a need for the continual burnt offering—vv. 3-4, 8-9; 6:9, 12a, 13:
A. God’s people were required to offer the burnt offering every day, not only in the morning but also in the evening; on every Sabbath, at the beginning of every month, and during every festival, special burnt offerings were required—Num. 28:3—29:40.
B. Due to the requirements regarding the burnt offering, the bronze altar was specifically called “the altar of burnt offering”—Exo. 30:28; 38:1.
C. The burnt offering was the continual offering, and the fire for the burnt offering was to burn unceasingly; it had to burn day and night—Lev. 6:9, 12a, 13:
1. “The burnt offering shall be on the hearth on the altar all night until the morning, and the fire of the altar shall be kept burning on it”—v. 9:
a. “The fire on the altar shall be kept burning on it; it must not go out”—v. 12a.
b. “Fire shall be kept burning on the altar continually; it shall not go out”—v. 13.
2. All night until the morning signifies that a burnt offering should remain in the place of burning through the dark night of this age until the morning, until the Lord Jesus comes again—v. 9; 2 Pet. 1:19; Mal. 4:2.
3. The continual burning of the fire on the altar signifies that God as the holy fire in the universe is always ready to receive (burn) what is offered to Him as food, and that God’s desire to accept what is offered to Him never ceases—Lev. 6:9b, 12a, 13; Heb. 12:29.
D. The type of the burnt offering shows us that we need to have a life of the continual burnt offering, a life with fire burning on the altar all day long—Lev. 6:12a, 13.
IV. To live a life of the continual burnt offering is to be a living sacrifice—Rom. 12:1:
A. The burnt offering is a type of our consecration, of our offering ourselves to God as a living sacrifice; the meaning of consecration is to offer ourselves to God as a living sacrifice—Lev. 1:3-4, 8-9; 6:9, 12a, 13; Rom. 12:1.
B. The daily burnt offering in the Old Testament typifies that, in the New Testament, we who belong to God should offer ourselves daily to God—Num. 28:3-8.
C. The sacrifice in Romans 12:1 is living because it has life through resurrection—6:4-5:
1. To be a living sacrifice means that we constantly offer ourselves to the Lord.
2. We offer ourselves to the Lord continually, and the Lord can use us continually.
D. This sacrifice is holy because, positionally, it has been separated to God by the blood of Christ from the world and from all persons, matters, and things that are common; and because, dispositionally, the natural life and the old creation have been sanctified and transformed by the Holy Spirit with God’s life and God’s holy nature for God’s satisfaction; thus, this sacrifice is well pleasing to God—12:1.
E. In verse 1 the bodies are plural, but the sacrifice is singular:
1. Although many bodies are presented, they become one sacrifice, implying that, although we are many, our service in the Body of Christ should not be many individual services, separated and unrelated.
2. All our service should constitute one whole service, and this service must be unique because it is the service of the one Body in Christ—vv. 4-5.
3. The church life as a whole is a burnt offering for the satisfaction of God.
4. The believers live in the Body of Christ by presenting their bodies as a living sacrifice; to have the Body life we need to present our bodies to the Lord and to His Body—vv. 1, 4-5.
V. All our service to God must be based on the fire from the altar of burnt offering—v. 11; Lev. 9:24; 16:12-13; 6:13; cf. 10:1-2:
A. God wanted the service of the children of Israel to be based on this fire—6:13.
B. The service that we render to God in the church life must originate with the fire on the altar of burnt offering, and our service must come out of the burning of God’s fire and be the issue of this fire—Exo. 3:2, 4, 6; Rom. 12:1, 11.
 
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