Hidden Sins Can’t Hide
Hidden sins can’t hide from the eyes of our all-knowing God. We wouldn’t want them to. When we are free from sin’s dominion, we are free indeed! Oh, this is going to be a fascinating study in Leviticus today! The Book of Leviticus was written between 1440 and 1400 B.C. I want to set the stage about what this book is about from the Easy English Bible commentary:
History of the Book Of Leviticus
“Moses, or one of his helpers, wrote Leviticus in the Hebrew language. All the people called Jews spoke the Hebrew language. They belonged to the family that Abraham, Isaac and Jacob started. The Jews called the Book of Leviticus ‘wayyiqra’. This is actually two Hebrew words, ‘way’ and ‘yiqra’. They mean ‘and’ and ‘he called’. But when the Jews translated their Bible into the Greek language, they gave the book a new title. The new Greek title meant ‘about the Levites’. Our title ‘Leviticus’ is the Latin word for ‘about the Levites’.
First for the Jew, Now for Christians
There are no Jewish priests with the same duties as they had at the time of Moses. But the Book of Leviticus is still important. The reason for this is that many things in the book point to (describe) the life and death of Jesus! Leviticus was important after the Jews left Egypt. Today, it is important after a person becomes a Christian. For the Jews, the method of atonement was sacrifice. The animal had suffered death so that the Jews could live as friends with God.
For Christians, that method is also sacrifice. But it is not the death of an animal. God has provided his own precious son, Jesus, to be the perfect sacrifice. His death deals with every sin of the people who invite him into their lives. He has freed them from sin’s power so we can all please God because of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross.
In Exodus, we read how the Jews made the tent. But in Leviticus, we learn what the priests had to do in God’s tent. All the priests belonged to the tribe of Levi. They were God’s special servants.”
We can divide the Book of Leviticus into 8 sections.
- Rules about the sacrifices. (Leviticus 1:1 to 7:38)
- There were Rules about how to make a priest. (Leviticus 8:1 to 10:20)
- Rules about what is clean and what is not clean. (Leviticus 11:1 to 15:33)
- The Day of Atonement. (Leviticus 16:1 to 16:34)
- Rules about religion. (Leviticus 17:1 to 22:33)
- Holy days, weeks and years (Leviticus 23:1 to 25:55)
- Blessings and punishments. (Leviticus 26:1 to 26:46)
- Rules about promises and offerings. (Leviticus 27:1 to 27:34)
The five offerings all had their own purpose:
- The Whole Sacrifice (1:1-17) – To give yourself humbly to God.
- Corn Offering (2:1-16) – An offering to thank God, give your goods and your work to Him.
- Peace Offering (3:1-17 and 22:18-30) – To thank God; to be at peace with God; to be happy with other people; to express love to God. Also, after you have carried out a promise completely.
- Sin Offering (4:1 to 5:13) – An offering to ask God to forgive you when you sinned by accident.
- Guilt Offering (5:14-19) – To ask God to forgive you when you *sinned against his holy things, or when you hurt somebody else.
Hidden Sins Need to be Covered.
God speaks to Moses about instructions concerning offerings. If we remember Cain and Abel, Cain went about presenting an offering in his own way, presenting some of what he had, but Abel offered his best. Sin broke our fellowship with God and has to be paid for. And offerings were how sin was dealt with in the Old Testament.
Purpose of Writing (From www.gotquestions.org commentary):
“Because the Israelites had been held captive in Egypt for 400 years, the concept of God had been distorted by the polytheistic, pagan Egyptians. The purpose of Leviticus is to provide instruction and laws to guide a sinful, yet redeemed people in their relationship with a holy God. There is an emphasis in Leviticus on the need for personal holiness in response to a holy God. Sin must be atoned for through the offering of proper sacrifices (chapters 8-10).”
From Easy English commentary:
“Leviticus is about God’s people. But Leviticus also tells us about Jesus. So, it also tells us about Christian people. The Jews gave these 5 offerings at the meeting tent. Christians do not give animals as their offerings. Instead, Jesus is their offering; he is their whole, corn, peace, sin and guilt offering. Normally, only Jews and Christians give these types of offerings. They are gifts to God from God’s people. That helps us to understand that the first three offerings are not for sin. They are for fellowship. They bring God and his people together.
That is why Leviticus 1:4 has atonement (or ‘at-one-ment’) in it. But it is not the usual meaning of at-one-ment. The usual meaning is when God forgives a sinner for the first time. They become ‘at one’. In Leviticus chapters 1 to 3, it is when a Jew or a Christian wants to be ‘at one’ with God in his daily life. That is why the word ‘wants’ in Leviticus 1:3 is so important. Also, it tells us why they burned everything in chapter 1. The Christian who wants fellowship with God gives everything to God. So, as you read Leviticus chapters 1 to 7, remember this. It is only about God’s people.
In Moses’ time, they were Jews. Now, also, they are Christians. Leviticus is about God’s people. 3500 years ago, they were the Jews. But Leviticus also tells us about Jesus. So, it also tells us about Christian people.”
Hidden and Known Sins Both Cost
All sin costs and needs to be dealt with. But we have a heart problem. Our own hearts will deceive us concerning sin in our lives. As it says in Jeremiah 17:9 ESV “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?”
Scripture of the Day: Leviticus 4:1-2, 13
“Then the Lord said to Moses, 2 “Give the following instructions to the people of Israel. This is how you are to deal with those who sin unintentionally by doing anything that violates one of the Lord’s commands. 13 “If the entire Israelite community sins by violating one of the Lord’s commands, but the people don’t realize it, they are still guilty.”
Remember Luke 12:2 from the other day? “Everything that is hidden will be shown, and everything that is secret will be made known.”
Hidden Sins Have Been Paid For
Now before we panic about hidden sins, the good news is that Christ atoned for all of our sins—hidden and known. But this does not exempt us from examination. We need to be careful to examine ourselves for less obvious sins, or sins we have “gotten used to” in our lives. Living in these jars of clay, it is easy to accept some sins as normal. But all sin will be judged. All sin needs to be covered. Even hidden sins.
Blind Spots Can Be Revealed
But we all have blind spots and struggle to examine ourselves objectively. We all like grace and can grade ourselves on the grace curve. Being deceived about our own sinfulness will not bless us. We need to expose and deal with hidden sins. David grappled with the need to be forgiven for sins we do not see. Psalm 19:12 (NIV) “But who can discern their own errors? Forgive my hidden faults.”
Hidden Sins Enslave Us
Similarly, Paul describes being stuck in a quagmire of the struggle against sin in Romans 7:15-20 (NIV). However, It is hard to recognize our sinfulness. We don’t often see it. On the other hand, others do, right? It takes humility to expose our sin. We have to admit our need. But, oh, the beauty of being free from sin’s dominion! Sin has dominion over us and seeks to master us. But when we practice sin, and some think it is freedom, it is enslavement.
Acceptance Comes from Obedience
As it says in Genesis 4:7 when God spoke to Cain BEFORE he murdered Abel: “You will be accepted if you do what is right. But if you refuse to do what is right, then watch out! Sin is crouching at the door, eager to control you. But you must subdue it and be its master.” Cain was warned but he still sinned. Sin is deceptive. We can cherish our sins more than obedience but the results are devastating. But when we do not hide our sins, but examine and expose them – hidden and known, we are free and blessed!
Hidden Sins Need to Be Exposed
Proverbs 28:13 ESV “Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.”
The awesome news is that sin does not have the final word. God’s word and promises do. And we can do something about our sins. We do not have to remain in them.
1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
But we have to acknowledge our sins. Remember the definition of acknowledge? To accept or admit the existence or truth of.
“Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD.” And you forgave the guilt of my sin.”
Hidden Sins Need to Be Confessed.
Therefore, friends, won’t you pray with me?
“God, you know all of our sins – the hidden and the known. We confess our sins, whether or not we see all of our sins. Please reveal them so we will not be condemned but be set free. Help us to see our errors, God. Thank you that you forgive our sins and the guilt of our sins if we confess them.”
But Colossians 3:10 ESV reminds us, too, that we don’t have to live like we did before Christ. We shouldn’t: “And have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge after the image of its creator.”
How are we renewed?
- Knowledge of God. Part of how we examine ourselves is by being in His word daily.
- Accountability with others who can help us to see our sin.
- Forgiving ourselves and others sets us free further from sin’s dominion.
In conclusion, hidden sins can’t hide. Hidden or known, we will be punished for all sin we own. Like the law of gravity, sin reaps consequences. We cannot claim ignorance. But we can ask God to reveal the sin that is hidden from our eyes. The good news is that Christ atoned for all our sins—hidden and known.
7-Fold One-Year Bible Reading Plan Day #162: Leviticus 1-4
Scripture of the Day: Leviticus 4:1-2, 13
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