Drash on Parashat Vayikra
Vayikra starts out with the detailed descriptions of how the sacrificial system was to work.[Read Lev. 4:22-31 and Hebrews 10]
Regardless of how you read this portion, one thing that completely stands out is the Cost of Sin. Sometimes being under the New Covenant we forget how much Adonai hates sin, and the price that must be paid. In Hebrews (10:26-31) we are reminded that we must not continue to sin after we have received Yeshua’s atonement.
Next we see how sin was forgiven. The Kohen will make atonement for him (through the blood of the animal) over the sin that was committed and he will be forgiven. However, thought the sin was forgiven, the blood of animals cannot make the ones offering, perfect, nor can it remove the conscience of sin or take away sins and remove the desire to sin, the temptation, the inclination of our hearts. (Heb. 10:1-4)
However, the blood of Messiah removes sin and makes us holy as it is applied to our lives. (Heb. 10:11-18)
But why are we not made holy immediately? And why do we ever get tempted to sin after accepting Yeshua?
Firstly, is temptation sin? (Heb. 4:14-16) How then are we tempted? (James 1:2-4, 12-15) Also read Romans 7 How is Adoni gracious in the midst of the test? (1 Cor. 10:12-13) This is just like the children of Israel when they were overtaking the Promised Land. (Deut. 7:20-24)
How then do we avoid/defeat temptation?
We overcome by the Ruach when we put to death the deeds of the flesh (body) (Rom. 7:24-25 & 8:9-17) We humble ourselves before the temptation/testing comes. (Matt. 6:13, 4:1) We humble ourselves when we see our own lusts/desires in our hearts that are contrary to His Word. (Jas. 4:1-10)
But, back to the question of holiness. Why are we not made holy immediately?
Well sometimes Adonai does deal with things immediately. I know of many testimonies of people who were immediately delivered of, drugs, alcohol, pornography and other sinful habits. But sometimes, the temptations are not removed, and victory comes after years of battle. Sometimes things remain hidden, and the guilt is not known immediately. (Lev. 4:13-14, 22-24 & 27-29, 5:2-4)
There is an easy to learn, through humbling ourselves, such that we receive more grace, and there is a hard way through testing. Either way however is good, because it shows us or reminds us that Adonai loves us. (Heb. 12:4-11)