May 2017


Introduction

In the previous section, we have diagrammed and detailed out the process of manufacturing the ashes used in the purification rite of the Mosaic covenant. We have also read the Torah and understood that the sprinkling of the water had nothing to do with Physical cleanliness.

Mosaic Covenant was very clear about this

“Then a man who is clean shall gather
  up the ashes of the heifer, and store
  them outside the camp in a clean place;
  and they shall be kept for the congregation
  of the children of Israel for the water of
  purification; it is for purifying from sin.”

This is use whenever anyone touches a dead body or carcass. It is also used on unclean tents. It would likely be used also when dealing with lepers and purifying lepers houses. Just before they enter the camp.

This is one of the methods of purifying sin under the Mosaic Covenant.

The Mosaic Rituals Were Prophecies Of Christ

The fact is that the tabernacle under the Mosaic covenant is not like the one that God intended. He had shown his true tabernacle to Moses and what Moses could create is a mere pattern that was modelled after it.

For YHWH said

“And see to it that you make them
  according to the pattern which
  was shown you on the mountain.”- YHWH (Ex 25:40)

God had also likely revealed the same thing to David. For David had given all the plans to his son Solomon (1 Chron 28:11-18) David gave this conclusion

 “All this,the Lord made me understand
   in writing, by His hand upon me, all
   the works of these plans.”-  David (1 Chron 28:19)

The design that they saw is likely recorded by Ezekiel in full details. The measurements are given to Israel to help them be ashamed of their iniquities (Eze 43:10-11).  The actual Tabernacle that God wants is a standard that they can never reach in the Old Testament.

For God wants to dwell together with his people, but he had to set up the Tabernacle as a separation, for the people he dwell among are unclean. All the sin offering, the water of purification is unable to allow God to dwell with his people. That is why he set up the Tabernacle to separate himself from the people. He encamped the Levites around him.

Out of the Levites he separated the family of Aaron and they are the only ones who could enter into his presence once a year on the day of Atonement. The purpose of the day of Atonement is to purify the tabernacle so that Gods presence can continue to dwell in the midst of their uncleanness.

The Fulfilment Of Christ

The Jews believe that the Messiah will be a warrior king that will re-establish the kingdom of David. They believe that the temple will be rebuilt according to the measurement seen by Ezekiel. they believe that God will establish this Davidic Kingdom and the entire nation will worship the one true God.

But Christians believe that the messiah is Jesus, he is to establish the kingdom of David, but the kingdom is not a physical kingdom. Christian believe that the church established by Christ is the Kingdom of the Messiah. Within the Church contains the new covenant   that is better the Mosaic covenant. For in the new Covenant, God can finally live in the hearts of the people. He can rule the hearts of man.

The Jerusalem of the Messiah is the church of God, out of Jerusalem comes water that can heal. It can purify the people and made them right with God that is why the Author of Hebrews, described this new tabernacle like this 

“Then indeed, even the first
  covenant had ordinances of
  divine service and the earthly
  sanctuary … …

  It was symbolic for the present
  time in which both gifts and sacrifices
  are offered which cannot make him
  who performed the service perfect
  in regard to the conscience—
 
concerned only with foods and drinks,
  various washings, and fleshly ordinances
  imposed until the time of reformation.

  But Christ came as High Priest of the
  good things to come, with the greater and
  more perfect tabernacle not made with
  hands, that is, not of this creation.” –Hebrews (9:1.9-11)

The covenant of Christ is one step higher than the covenant of Moses. For now those of the new covenant could enter deeper into the Sanctuary while those who are of the earthy service can only serve a the Holy Place. 

That is why he compared  the ritual of the red heifer and compare them to the sacrifice of Christ.  He drew this conclusion

For if the blood of bulls and
  goats and the ashes of a heifer,
  sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies
  for the purifying of the flesh, 
  how much more shall the blood of
  Christ, who through the eternal Spirit
  offered Himself without spot to God,
  cleanse your conscience from dead
  works to serve the living God?”- (Heb 9:13-14)

This is the basis why Christians compares the sacrifice of the Red Heifers as a prophecy of the Sacrifice of Christ. In those days, the ashes of the heifer is used to purify sin. Today Christians uses the blood of Christ, sprinkled onto us for forgiveness of sin.

Interesting Notes About The Ritual

The entire law of purification is full of the symbolism of the sacrifice of Christ. It is indeed an interesting prophecy of the coming sacrifice of Christ.

1. The Heifer is slaughtered outside the camp
2. The Heifer, High Priest, and the helpers must all go out of the camp
3. The blood is sprinkled 7 times on the entrance of the Tabernacle
4. Everyone involved in making the ash had to be unclean
5. Everyone who touches the water is made unclean 
6. The ash and water is used on both Israelites and strangers (Gentiles) (Num 19:10)
7. The purpose of the ash is to purify one from sin

Let us take sometimes to examine this.

Pt 1 and 2: The Heifer, The Priest, And the helpers must go outside the Camp

The Red Heifer is the only old testament rite that requires animals to be killed outside of camp. If we compare the red Heifer with the other animals sacrifices you will notice the following

1. All Burnt Offerings are killed at the north side of the altar (Lev 1:11)
2. Peace offering are killed before the door of tabernacle (West side) (Lev 3 : 8) 
3. Sin offering are killed before the door of tabernacle (West side) (Lev 4: 4)
           a. Hide, flesh , head, legs, entrails and offal taken outside of camp,  (Lev 4:11-12)
4. On Day of Atonement, the sacrifices are like 1,3 but one goat is released
5. Only in a case of unsolved murder, a heifer will be killed (Deut 21:3-4)

Only the red heifer is killed outside the camp. All other animals offering is not done in the same way. The sacrifice of the Red Heifer must be done outside the camp. In order to manufacture the ashes, everyone had to go outside of camp.

This trial kind of reminded me of how Jesus was led out from Jerusalem to Golgotha to be crucified. It is quite interesting for Jesus is the Heifer to be killed, and he is also the high priest of the new covenant. All of them had to go outside of camp to be sacrificed. The Heifer is killed outside the camp. Its blood is taken and sprinkled at the door of the Tabernacle.

This is the unique action that separates the sacrifice of the red heifer from all other sacrifices.

In the same way, Christians of today must be willing to follow the high priest and the red heifer to go all the way out of the camp in order to save souls. For before the ascension of Christ he instructed us”

Extracted from Acts 1:4-8
And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father,

“Which you have heard from Me; 
   for John truly baptized with water,
  but you shall be baptized with the
  Holy Spirit not many days from now.”

The disciples asked

“Lord, will You at this time restore
  the kingdom to Israel?”

Jesus replied

“It is not for you to know times or seasons
  which the Father has put in His own authority.
 
But you shall receive power when the Holy
  Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be
  witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all
  Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

Jesus wanted us to be his witness, in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria and to the ends of the world. To do so, we must follow the example of the Priest to be willing to leave the camp for the sake of saving people from sin.

Pt 3 Location If The Blood Of The Heifer

When the red Heifer  is killed. The Priest had to collect the blood of the Heifer and bring it back to the Tabernacle. Sprinkle it at a front of the Tabernacle

“and Eleazar the priest shall take
  some of its blood with his finger,
  and sprinkle some of its blood seven
  times directly in front of the tabernacle
  of meeting”- Moses (Num 19:4)

Sprinkling of the blood in front of the tabernacle of meeting, indicate that the blood is sprinkled towards the entrance of the Tabernacle. The tabernacle is only accessible by the Priest and the high priest.

Interestingly, that means to enter the tabernacle, one have to enter through an entrance sprinkled with the blood of the Heifer. if we do a close search of the verse. The blood of the Heifer is the only blood sprinkled there.

In the same way, Jesus is the red Hiefer that was sacrifice outside of camp. It is through his blood the Christians of today could enter the heavenly Tabernacle.  Today we must be baptised in the blood of Christ through baptism in order to enter.

Once God gave elder John a reed to measure

“Then I was given a reed like a measuring rod.
   And the angel stood,  saying, “Rise and measure
  the temple of God, the altar, and those who worship
  there. 
  
But leave out the court which is outside the temple,
  and do not measure it, for it has been given to the
  Gentiles. And they will tread the holy city underfoot
  for forty-two months.” – John (Rev 11:1-2)

John is suppose to measure the temple, the altar (Likely the Altar of Incense as it is in the temple) and the people who worship. Meaning to say measure those who step into the Tabernacle to worship. Through the blood of the Heifer. ‘

We need to receive the blood of Christ to enter into the temple. Only those in the temple are measured by God. 

Pt 4-5 Those who help in the ritual are unclean

In the sacrifice of the Red Hiefer. All those who are involved in the creation of the Ash must be unclean. The High Priest who witness the killing of the heifer and sprinkled the blood onto the tabernacle is unclean. The one who burned the heifer and collect the ashes are all unclean.

In order to purify the people those sprinkled the water of purification are unclean. This is a reminder of Christ sacrifice. How he became unclean and bore our iniquities. Just as what Prophet Isaiah said

“Surely He has borne our griefs
  And carried our sorrows;
  Yet we esteemed Him stricken,
  Smitten by God, and afflicted.
   But He was wounded for our transgressions,
  He was bruised for our iniquities;
  The chastisement for our peace was upon Him,
  And by His stripes we are healed.
   All we like sheep have gone astray;
  We have turned, every one, to his own way;
  And the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.” – Isaiah (Is 53:4-6)

In order to save Israel from sin, the High Priest must be unclean and cast out from the camp. In the same way, the helpers of the high priest were all made unclean in order to create the ashes necessary to create the water of purification.

In the same way we as Christians are suppose to help the high Priest to deal with sin. We have to be ambassadors in Christ telling people to be reconciled with God. In the process of doing this we may have to suffer together with the high priest. But we have to do it.

We must have the same spirit of those who took part in the ritual of the red heifer. To be willing to go out of the camp and be cast out so that others will be purified.

That is why Paul tells us

“Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ,
  as though God were pleading through us:
  we implore you on Christ’s behalf, be reconciled
  to God.  For He made Him who knew no sin to
   be
sin for us, that we might become the
  righteousness of God in Him.”- Paul (2 Cor 5:20-21)

Pt 6-7  The Users Of The Water Of Purification From Sin

“And the one who gathers the ashes of the
  heifer shall wash his clothes, and be unclean
  until evening. It shall be a statute forever to
  the children of Israel and to the stranger who
  dwells among them.”- Moses (Num 19:10)

Strangers who dwell among them are gentiles and non Jews. While strangers were unable to participate in most of the Mosaic rituals. They can be sprinkled with the water of purification. Interestingly the water of purification is used for the purification from sin (Num 19:9)

This is one of the interestingly prophecy telling us that God had intended to save gentiles from sin. Just as once he spoke through Prophet Micah

“Now it shall come to pass in the latter days
  That the mountain of the Lord’s house
  Shall be established on the top of the mountains,
  And shall be exalted above the hills;
  And peoples shall flow to it.
   Many nations shall come and say,
  “Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord,
  To the house of the God of Jacob;
  He will teach us His ways,
  And we shall walk in His paths.”
  For out of Zion the law shall go forth,
  And the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.”- Micah (Mic 4:1-2)

After Christ sacrifice and the blood was offered. The mountain of the Lord house will be established. Many will flow to it to learn the way of the Lord. This includes both Jews and gentiles alike. they will learn the Law of God taught by Jesus.

In the same way when Christ had raised up the fallen tent of David, when he established the church as the place of salvation. The gentiles will be able to called onto the name of God. As spoken by Amos

“On that day I will raise up
  The tabernacle of David, which has fallen down,
  And repair its damages;
  I will raise up its ruins,
  And rebuild it as in the days of old;
   That they may possess the remnant of Edom,
  And all the Gentiles who are called by My name,”
  Says the Lord who does this thing.””- Amos (Amos 9:11-12)

It is only though the blood of the Red hiefer where sin is being cleanse. This is done on both Jews and gentile alike. That is why the Author of Hebrew tells us

 And according to the law almost all
  things are purified with blood, and
  without shedding of blood there is no
  remission.” – Author of Hebrews (Heb 9:22)

“Christ was offered once to bear the
   sins of many. To those who eagerly
  wait for Him He will appear a second
  time, apart from sin, for salvation.” – Author of Hebrews (Heb 9:28)

In that passage, he sum up both the purification from the blood of the red heifer and the purification on the day of atonement together. As the blood of both sacrifices are meant to deal with sin.

Conclusion

Let us be able to see the prophecies concerning Christ through all these rituals from the Mosaic Covenant. Most importantly let us enter into the covenant with God through the blood of Christ.

The Law is meant to teach us about Christ. Christ had to come to earth to fulfil all these requirements as stipulated in the Mosaic Covenant. When his sacrifice is done he had fulfilled all of them. That is why Christians today do not need to follow the rituals of the Mosaic Covenant. They were all prophecies and lessons about Christ.

We need to see Christ in these ritual and more importantly follow Christ. Let us accept the cleansing form the blood of Christ through baptism, understanding that the sacrifice of the Red heifer is a prophecy concerning Christ.

Let us not be like the Jewish Rabbis who are unable to see Christ in their ritual and are still obsessed with breeding the ultimate Red Heifer. Let us instead follow Christ and be saved.

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As it was my custom since 2010, I would specially post a hymn on the 3rd may of the year.  3rd may had always been a special day in my life.

So far I have shared the following hymns

What A Friend I have In Jesus” – May 3rd 2010
“Thanks to God” – May 3rd 2011
“Day By Day” – May 3rd 2012
“All The Way The Savior Leads Me” – May 3rd 2013
“Guide Me O Thou Great Redeemer” – May 3rd 2014
”Tis So Sweet To Trust In Jesus” – May 3rd 2015
”Hold Thou My hand” – May 3rd 2016

Today, with only one hour left in May 3rd. I decided to thank God for all the help he had rendered to me for the past year. I managed to move safely to Vietnam and settle down. Though life is far from perfect, but I was able to see all the grace he had given and how he had protected me from one difficulty to another. He had also entrusted one of his little heritage to my wife and I. We have been caring for him for 8 months now.

So I decided to share this particular hymn, for I know that God had watches over me and will continue to do so.

For God once spoke through Prophet Isaiah

“Can a woman forget her nursing child,
  And not have compassion on the son of her womb?
  Surely they may forget,
  Yet I will not forget you. 
  See, I have inscribed you on the palms of My hands;
  Your walls are continually before Me.” – YHWH (Is 49:15-16)

Therefore God will never forget, he will always be here watching me. Even though difficulties may abound and troubles will increase. God will continue to watch over me. He is ahead of me and he will see me through the difficulties.

My Father Watches Over Me

William C. Martin, pub.1910

  1. I trust in God wherever I may be,
    Upon the land, or on the rolling sea,
    For come what may, from day to day,
    My heav’nly Father watches over me.
    • Refrain:
      I trust in God, I know He cares for me;
      On mountain bleak or on the stormy sea;
      Though billows roll, He keeps my soul;
      My heav’nly Father watches over me.
  2. He makes the rose an object of His care,
    He guides the eagle through the pathless air,
    And surely He remembers me;
    My heav’nly Father watches over me.
  3. I trust in God, for, in the lion’s den,
    On battlefield, or in the prison pen,
    Through praise or blame, through flood or flame,
    My heav’nly Father watches over me.
  4. The valley may be dark, the shadows deep,
    But, oh, the Shepherd guards His lonely sheep;
    And through the gloom He’ll lead me home,
    My heav’nly Father watches over me.