Horns of the altar

Leviticus 4:7

“The priest shall put some of the blood on the horns of the altar of sweet incense before the Lord…”

The blood of Christ atones for our sin. After the sin was confessed onto the head of the animal, and the animal was killed, one of the things the priest did was to put the blood on the horns of the altar.

The horns of the altar was the place of the authority and justice of the Holy God. God is holy and His righteous laws must be obeyed. Human beings deliberately disobey His laws and are therefore separated from God. Because God is holy He will punish sin, which is the one thing that destroys our world and will lead us into spiritual death forever. God is not willing that we should perish in this way, so He has provided a way of escape. This is why Jesus came to die. These Old Testament scenes of the sacrifices for sin, were just pictures of what Jesus was coming to do.

So the righteousness of God must be satisfied. The price of sin is very serious, it results in death, and therefore the animal had to die. The blood was shed to make recompense for the sin of the person who made the sacrifice. The blood was applied to the place of the authority and justice of God, to show that the applied blood could make the payment for the sin of the person.

The blood on the horns of the altar would satisfy the justice of God, because the price of sin had been paid. God was pleased because the sin was wiped out and He could forgive the person for their sin against Him.

So this picture shows us the aspects of the death of the Lord Jesus, as the atonement for sin. He is the perfect sacrifice for sin, and is able to save all those who come to Him. The shedding of His blood has paid the price for our sin and He can wipe it out. Only he can make us clean. His sacrifice was so powerful and so deep, and His blood is so righteous, that he is able to save us. He has paid the awful price for our sin, so that we can go free. He lost His life, so that we could gain ours. This is the love of the Saviour of the world. He is willing and able to to take on the punishment that we should have had, and take the blame and the shame and pay that price to set us free from these things.

The death of Christ was what it took to satisfy the holiness of God and to deal with sin. This speaks to us of the purity and righteousness of God, and also the very deep sinfulness of sin in us. We should run from our sin and run to Christ for forgiveness. All who come to Him in faith are never sent away. He is the loving Lord and ready to forgive us.

His blood is sufficient to cleanse us and keep us and bring us safely to heaven at the end.

“But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ, his Son, cleanses us from all sin.”

1 John 1:7

Jesus is able to save us, and what a Saviour, that He can wipe out all sin and make us clean and holy before God the Father. How good to know that there is no more punishment hanging over us and we are free people.

“There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who don’t walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.”

Romans 8:1

We are therefore free people, and we can now stand in the presence of the Father and speak with Him, serve Him and worship Him. What privileges we enjoy and what peace we have with God, because of Jesus our Saviour and Lord. It is no wonder that Christians love Jesus, and when we see the pictures in the Word of God more clearly, it makes us love Him more.

What He endured for us, we can never really contemplate, but it was such a deep work, that it satisfied the righteous requirements of the holy law of God, and we get to enjoy the outcome of what He did on the cross. We will never have to suffer for our sin, because of Jesus.

“For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus made me free from the law of sin and of death. For what the law couldn’t do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God did, sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh; that the ordinance of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”

Romans 8:2-4

The law could never save us, but the love of the eternal Saviour has done so. We can now walk in the power of the Spirit of God and live righteous lives before the Lord. The power of the hold of the flesh is now broken in us, and we are free to obey and do what is right.

Such is the power of the shed blood and the righteousness of the atoning sacrifice of Christ. We can now walk as he walked and please the Lord.

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