XVI. THE FAT OF THE SIN OFFERING BEING OFFERED IN SMOKE ON THE ALTAR
“And he shall offer up in smoke the fat of the sin offering on the altar” (v. 25). This signifies that the Lord Jesus’ death on the cross is for our redemption, and that His heart toward God and for God is for God’s acceptance.
The fat of the sin offering signifies the heart of Christ, the tender part of Christ. This tender part of Christ is altogether toward God and for God. His heart toward God and for God is for God’s acceptance.
In the scene portrayed in Leviticus 16, two things are sweet to God. First, the heart of Christ, which is toward God and for God, is sweet to God. Second, Christ eventually becomes the incense burning on the incense altar with the fire from the offering altar, and this burning incense becomes a sweet savor to God. Both of these involve that which is acceptable to God and that which becomes God’s acceptance of us. We are accepted in Christ as the incense burned before God and also in Christ’s heart, which is toward God and for Him. With the sin offering, therefore, we have two things: Christ as the incense burned on the incense altar and the heart of Christ signified by the fat burned on the offering altar.
XVII. THE ONE WHO LET THE GOAT GO TO AZAZEL WASHING HIS CLOTHES, BATHING HIS FLESH IN WATER, AND AFTER THAT COMING INTO THE CAMP
“He who let the goat go to Azazel shall wash his clothes, and bathe his flesh in water, and after that he may come into the camp” (v. 26). This signifies that the one who is defiled by contacting anything related to sin must deal with his outward living and with himself as well.
The one who let go the goat who bore the sins of the people to Azazel was related to sin and defiled by it. Therefore, he had to bathe himself and wash his clothes. He had to deal with his outward living (signified by the clothes) and also with himself. This indicates that whenever we are defiled by contacting something related to sin, we need to wash, to deal with, both our conduct and ourselves.
XVIII. THE BULL AND THE GOAT OF THE SIN OFFERING BEING TAKEN OUTSIDE THE CAMP, AND THEIR HIDES, FLESH, AND DUNG BEING BURNED WITH FIRE
“The bull of the sin offering and the goat of the sin offering, whose blood was brought in to make propitiation in the holy of holies, shall be taken outside the camp, and they shall burn their hides, their flesh, and their dung with fire” (v. 27). This has a twofold significance.
First, this signifies that the Lord Jesus accomplished on the cross, once for all, the eternal and perfect redemption, and His serving ones have no participation in this matter. He alone accomplished a perfect and eternal redemption on the cross, signified by the altar outside the tabernacle. Furthermore, He Himself alone entered within the veil into the holy of holies. We, His serving ones, had no part in the accomplishment of redemption.
Second, what is described in verse 27 signifies that the Lord who accomplished redemption was rejected by man. Hence, whoever receives His redemption should go with Him outside the camp, bearing His reproach (Heb. 13:13). The camp signifies a religious organization, in particular the organization of the Jewish religion. To be outside the camp is to be outside organized religion. Today we are outside organized religion bearing the Lord’s reproach. To bear the Lord’s reproach means that we bear the same reproach He bore. The reproach He suffered now becomes our reproach. In the Lord’s recovery, we bear His reproach because of our standing concerning the church, that is, because we are standing on the ground of the oneness of the Body of Christ. When those in the denominations criticize and oppose our standing in the local churches, we bear the Lord’s reproach.
(Life-Study of Leviticus, Chapter 47, by Witness Lee)