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Thanks for the various links to the commentaries on Leviticus, particularly Bible.org. They've been very insightful in gleaning truth and context from among these outwardly seeming grotesque sacrifices. I completely understand now Moses' argument to Pharaoh that the Israelites had to go into the wilderness to worship because their worship would have been abhorring to the Egyptians.

All the symbolism rings with truth when linked to the New Testament but it's hard to imagine how I would have responded to these sacrifices without the benefit of the New Testament and the wisdom and inspiration of the Holy Spirit. I grew up on a farm and I’ve helped with the butchering of large animals and I still remember some of the noxious sights, and particularly the odors, of all the blood and guts. Some of the smells linger with you for days. It’s hard to imagine a Holy place with the sights and smells of blood, guts, and burnt flesh; particularly when Solomon dedicated the temple and sacrificed thousands. It’s Interesting that there is no mention of how to clean up after these sacrifices. Were the priests allowed to wash off the blood from their ears, thumbs, and toes; their priestly garments; the alter itself? Without the benefit of context, it’s terribly difficult to imagine how the LORD was pleased with the “sweet smelling aroma” of these sacrifices. Thank God for the incense that was also burned on the altar. From an outsider’s perspective, where is God in the midst of all this public killing? Surely to any outsider this would seem appalling.

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