Church Education Trust

Church and the Bible

BHB003 Leviticus



" The book of Atonement."

Key verses.

Ch.17:11. "For the life of the creature is in the blood......for it is the blood that makes atonement for one`s life."

Ch.19:2. "Be Holy because I the Lord your God am Holy."

Ch.11:45. "I am the Lord your God who brought you up out of Egypt to be your God;

                  therefore be holy bcause I am holy."

Ch. 19:18. "Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against one of your people, but love your neighbour as yourself."

                  I am theLord.

Key Words.

Atonement & Holiness.

Key Themes.

Atonement & Holiness.


           The main challenge of this book is based on the need for the nation of Israel to focus on Sanctification and cleansing.The influences of the Egyptian culture on their religious and social way of life had to be irradicated.

For that to be achieved the nation would have to be established as a kingdom led by priests who task was to introduce holiness codes which would reflect the nature and character of God and His purposes for the future well being of the nation both religiously and culturally.

Israel are seen to move from Egypt to Canaan, from slavery to freedom, from captivity to salvation and from salvation to service. The book of Leviticus is not about history but is a holiness teaching manuel for the nation of Israel at a very important time in their history.

Book outline.

God`s way of salvation. Chapters 1-16.

  • Sacrifice Ch.1-7.
  • Consecration of Priests. Ch.8-9.
  • Avoiding violating the law. Ch.10.
  • Purification Laws.Ch.11-15.
  • Atonement. Ch.16.

Fellowship with God. Ch.17-27.

  • Being separated from sin.Ch.17-22.
  • Religious festivals. Ch.23.
  • Obedience, Worship and Reverence. Ch.24.
  • Sabbatic Year and Jubilee. Ch.25-26.
  • Promises and Warnings from God. Ch.26.
  • Vows and Tithes. Ch.27.


There is one main theme in this book i.e. HOLINESS. The theme of holiness reveals that God can only be approached on the basis of a sacrifice being made and mediation through a Priest.

The outcome of sacrifice and mediation calls for the nation to walk before God in obedience and sanctification. In short those who would worship the living God must do so in a holy manner which God himself determines through sacrifice, mediation and obedience to His word.

Leviticus provides the chosen nation of Israel with directives for worship, codes of law and God`s handbook for priestly holy living. Leviticus reflects the beginning of a nation being cleansed from their sin and set apart for service for God. So holiness equals sacrifice and sanctification.

There are other themes to be found in the book such as.......

Laws concerning sacrifices.

The Temple Priesthood.

The Sacred Feasts.

An Assortment of Divine Laws.

Offerings & Sacrifices.

                                            a.Burnt Offering. (Lev.1:6, 8:18-21;16:24) The purpose of these offerings was for acts of worship, atonement for unintentional sin, devotion, committment to God. 

                                           b.Grain Offering. (Lev.2; 6:1-14.) Act of worship, remembering God`s gooodness, and His provisions.

                                           c.Fellowship Offering. (Lev.3; 7:11-14) Act of worship and thanksgiving.  


                                           d. Sin Offering.  (Lev.4:1-5:13; 6:24-30, 8:14-17, 16:3-22) Confession for sin, atonement for sin, Cleansing.

                                            e. Guilt offering. (Lev.5:14-6:7; 7:1-6.) Atonement for unintentional sin, with a 20% restitution for the sin committed.

Interesting that the number 7 plays a symbolic role in the law of Moses.

The number 7 is understood in scripture as the perfect number for God.

  1. Every 7th. day was a Sabbath.
  2. Every 7th. year was a Sabbath year.
  3. Every 7th. Sabbath year (49 years) was a Jubilee year.
  4. Every 7th. month was especially holy, with the celebration of three feasts.
  5. There were 7 weeks between Passover and Pentecost.
  6. The Passover feast lasted 7 days.
  7. The Feast of Tabernacles lasted 7 days.
  8. At the Feast of Tabernacles 14 lambs (2x7=14) were offered daily over 7 days.
  9. At the feast of Tabernacles 70 Bullocks (7x10=70) were offered daily.
  10. At Pentecost 7 lambs were offered.


The Hebrew title for the book is " wayyiqra " meaning " and He called". In the Talmud it is described as the "law of the priests and the law of offerings."

The title "Leviticus" which is used in the English language versions comes from the Latin Vulgate rendering.


The same arguements that have been made for Mosaic authorship to Genesis and Exodus apply here also. In the book of Leviticus some 56 times the reader is reminded that God (YHWH) has imparted the laws of this book to Moses.

As well as that the levitical codes given in the book fit the period of time that is ascribed to Moses and the nations as they moved into a more settled pattern of life as opposed to the wilderness period.


The writting of this book may well have happen some time before the death of Moses, that would give a date of approximately 1405 B.C. 

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