The New Life Mission

Sermons

Subject 26 : LEVITICUS

[26-9] (Leviticus 5:14-19) Sermon on The Trespass Offering

(Leviticus 5:14-19)
“Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: ‘If a person commits a trespass, and sins unintentionally in regard to the holy things of the Lord, then he shall bring to the Lord as his trespass offering a ram without blemish from the flocks, with your valuation in shekels of silver according to the shekel of the sanctuary, as a trespass offering. And he shall make restitution for the harm that he has done in regard to the holy thing, and shall add one-fifth to it and give it to the priest. So the priest shall make atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering, and it shall be forgiven him. If a person sins, and commits any of these things which are forbidden to be done by the commandments of the Lord, though he does not know it, yet he is guilty and shall bear his iniquity. And he shall bring to the priest a ram without blemish from the flock, with your valuation, as a trespass offering. So the priest shall make atonement for him regarding his ignorance in which he erred and did not know it, and it shall be forgiven him. It is a trespass offering; he has certainly trespassed against the Lord.’”
 
 
We Must Give the Trespass Offering to God
 
Today, I would like to share the Word with you regarding the trespass offering. Unlike the burnt offering, the trespass offering required the people of God to add one-fifth to the restitution made for their offence. When the people of Israel sinned against God or man, they had to offer a sacrificial animal to make restitution for the sin they committed. Spiritually speaking, this trespass offering implies that we must not only make restitution for our sins, but also pay an additional price on top of the wages of these sins. God said here that we should add one-fifth to the restitution that we must make for our sins. In those days, the people Israel gave to God such offerings as burnt offerings, sin offerings, trespass offerings, thanksgiving offerings, and peace offerings, and this was the requirement for the trespass offering.
It’s written in Leviticus 5:14-16: “Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: ‘If a person commits a trespass, and sins unintentionally in regard to the holy things of the Lord, then he shall bring to the Lord as his trespass offering a ram without blemish from the flocks, with your valuation in shekels of silver according to the shekel of the sanctuary, as a trespass offering. And he shall make restitution for the harm that he has done in regard to the holy thing, and shall add one-fifth to it and give it to the priest. So the priest shall make atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering, and it shall be forgiven him.’” As written here, the people of Israel during the age of the Old Testament had to add one-fifth to the restitution they made for their sins. The Scripture also tells us how the trespass offering ought to be given spiritually in the age of the New Testament, and by what kind of faith it ought to be offered. To find this out, we must first of all realize that all of us sin against both God and man all the time. Let me then explain to you what offering of faith such sinners must give to God.
When does anyone living on this earth commit a trespass? As the Word of God says, “If a person commits a trespass, and sins unintentionally,” and that means we commit sins while living in this world. When we sin against God, it starts from liking something else more than God. Liking something else more than God may not seem like a big deal at first, but it will inevitably lead us to commit a greater sin against God. We must therefore realize our faulty nature and admit our trespasses against God.
Even though we have been remitted from all our sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we are still prone to like the things of this earth. Such a phenomenon implies that even the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit may like something else more than God. They may like the things of the world just a little bit at first, but in time, they can come to serve and love them even more. And once they come to serve the things of the world, this constitutes a sin against God. Their hearts will then be darkened, they will drift further and further away from God, and instead of being joyous, they will always feel frustrated. God therefore told His people committing such sins to give a trespass offering by faith.
How do we actually behave? We sometimes come to like something else more than God and serve them, even though we know that this is wrong. Once we let this happen, we are bound to sin against God and drift away from Him further and further, despite the fact that God ought to be our first priority if we have truly received the remission of sins. That is why God is saying to you and me here to offer the trespass offering spiritually by faith.
As we the Christians carry on with our lives, we often end up serving something else more than God. We also come to like the things of the world more than God. What do you like môre, God or this world? There is no question that it’s God. This is clear for all those who have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. In contrast, almost all of those who have never been born again yet like this world. It’s a matter of fact that the born-again love God more than anything else in their hearts, even though they may fail to live accordingly with their acts.
If you ever lose your heart’s love for the God of righteousness, you must restore it fast through your faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit without fail. It’s all about how we bring the trespass offering to our Lord in this age. When the saints commit a trespass against God, they are to be remitted from their sins by offering a ram and giving one-fifth of its value to the priest. It’s written, “So the priest shall make atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering.” In other words, the saints who commit trespasses are made clean once and for all by believing in the baptism our Lord Jesus Christ received from John the Baptist, and the blood He shed on the Cross.
Indeed, just as the people of Israel were cleansed by offering a sacrificial animal to God and adding one-fifth to this restitution for their sins, a trespasser’s heart is made clean by believing that Jesus Christ has forever cleansed His saints by being baptized by John the Baptist, shedding His blood on the Cross, and rising from the dead again. As the Lord paid off the wages of all our trespasses more than sufficiently with His baptism and the shedding of His blood, His believers have been saved. As the priest gave such trespass offerings to God, His people were freed from all the sins of the world.
  
 
Our Fundamental Nature
 
Do we all sin against God or not? We all sin against God. As we carry on with our lives before God, we can see ourselves sinning in no time, sometimes without even realizing it ourselves for a while. This becomes clearer once we receive the remission of sins. When we like something else more than the Lord and fall head over heels for it, even if it has not harmed anyone yet, this in itself can darken our hearts. Strictly speaking, this is akin to worshiping a deity other than God. Like this, when we the saints commit a trespass, we must bring a trespass offering to God with our faith in Jesus Christ, who is more precious than our lives. The saints must always remember Jesus Christ, who has become the propitiation sacrifice for their trespass offering.
Todays’ Scripture reading is applicable to people today who sin after believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. So, it’s something that we should all know after receiving the remission of sins by believing in the righteousness of God. The trespass offering of the Old Testament reminds us of our knowledge and faith, that when Jesus Christ came to this earth, He bore all our sins once and for all through the baptism He received from John the Baptist, and He was condemned for all our sins with the blood He shed on the Cross as the wages of our sins. It teaches us to remember that the wages of our sins were paid with the righteousness of Jesus Christ, who is incomparably greater and more precious than us.
For us to give such a trespass offering to God, we must be cognizant of the fact that we sin against God all the time. The trespass offering is required when we commit sin against God; if we were capable of not sinning, then they would be no need for us to give such an offering or have such faith. But sometimes we like and serve something else more than God. Such sins are the sins that are committed by the righteous against God. We must therefore always admit to God the sins that we commit. This applies to every believer regardless of whether one’s faith is great or small. Whenever we sin whatever it is, all of us ought to confess to God, “Lord, I have sinned against You. These are the sins that I have committed.” Strictly speaking, the trespasses we commit are the sins that could not have been washed away were it for the righteousness of God.
This applies even when we commit a small sin against another human being. For instance, the Ten Commandments teach us to honor our parents, not to kill, not to steal, not to commit adultery, and so on. If we break any of these commandments, then this actually constitutes a sin. What kind of sins do we commit against God then? It is none other than the sin of idolatry, worshiping something else other than God. When we commit this sin, we are prone to think that it’s not such a big deal, but in the end, this sin will lead us to stand against God down the road. Think about it more deeply. What would we have left if we liked something else more than God and drifted away from Him? We would just turn into idolaters. Given the fact that our Savior is God alone, if we like and serve something else more than God, we will end up turning into His enemies.
No matter what kinds of sins we commit, they are all trespasses. Therefore it is absolutely necessary for us to turn against these mistaken sins and cleanse our hearts. In other words, there is a need for us to bring a trespass offering to God spiritually. We are supposed to not only make restitution for our sins before God, but also to add one-fifth to it. Such offerings are made when we believe that the baptism of Jesus Christ and the blood He shed on the Cross are far greater than our sins. This is the kind of faith held by the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
Let’s say that we stole $50 from someone. According to the sacrificial system of the Old Testament, first of all we would have to give an unblemished ram to God as the price of this sin. Secondly, we would have to make restitution for the theft by not only paying $50, but adding one-fifth of this amount. What does this mean for us living in this age of the New Testament? It teaches us to think and believe that the righteousness of the holy God is greater than our sins. The sacrifice of the Lord is greater than our sins. In other words, the baptism which He received from John the Baptist and the blood He shed on the Cross are far greater than the wages of our sins. Therefore, we know and believe that the Lord’s baptism and His blood on the Cross were more than sufficient to pay off all the wages of our sins, for He is greater than us. This is the faith implied by the trespass offering.
 
 
Look unto Jesus Christ, Our High Priest
 
It’s written in today’s Scripture reading, “So the priest shall make atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering, and it shall be forgiven him.” This passage implies that the Lord paid off all the wages of our sins more than sufficiently by being baptized and shedding His blood. We can bring burnt offerings to God daily by believing that our Lord forever bore all our everlasting sins by being baptized once.
Our Lord has made your heart and mine clean by giving us the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Can we then return to God to be made clean always? Yes. It’s when we bring the trespass offering to God by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. That’s because the Lord has at once paid off all the wages of your sins and mine more than sufficiently by being baptized by John the Baptist and shedding His blood on the Cross while shouldering the sins of the world. By confessing our faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit often, we can be made clean often.
The Lord does not want us to just list our sins, saying to Him, “Lord, I’ve committed this sin and that sin.” Rather, the Lord wants to hear us confessing our faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, saying to Him, “Lord, I believe that You have cleansed me from all my sins once and for all through the water and the Spirit!” It’s absolutely indispensable for us to remember that, and to believe with our hearts that the Lord bore all our sins and paid off all these wages which was more than sufficient. To wash such lowly beings like us from our sins, the holy Lord was baptized by John the Baptist and gave up His body, shedding His blood on the Cross, and thereby, paying off all the wages of our sins once and for all. For us to return to the holy God, there is no other way but to believe in the gospel of the water and the Spirit.
All of us commit sins, and the only way for us to return to God is coming to His presence by our faith in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. We can come to the presence of the holy God by believing that our Lord paid off all the wages of our sins which was more than sufficient, no matter what the wages might have been, with the baptism He received from John the Baptist and the blood He shed on the Cross. As the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we can love and worship God alone, the one and only true God. We can never approach the righteous God with a good conscience unless we know that our sins and their wages were all passed on to Jesus Christ. Is there anyone here who thinks, “I don’t commit that many sins?” But you and I must know our true selves clearly, realizing that we are all sinners committing the wicked and depraved sin of worshiping something else other than God. We commit all kinds of sins while living in this world. And the everyday sins that we commit are, in some ways, understandable from our human standard. However, in God’s sight, we must still be condemned for these sins.
My dear saints, just how many sins are we all committing, whether knowingly or unknowingly? Knowing how many shortcomings we have, while that is important, is not all that matters. Rather, we also need the knowledge that our Lord bore all the sins of this world once and for all by being baptized by John the Baptist, and that He paid off the wages of all our sins. In other words, no matter what kind of sin we commit against the Lord, what’s truly important is to know and believe in the righteousness of God. It’s absolutely indispensable for us to follow the Lord energetically with this faith.
Everyone will die sooner or later. Regardless of whether one worships an idol or not, everyone will die in the end. We the redeemed will also die at some point. All of us must therefore trust in the righteousness of God alone and follow it. It is only thanks to God that we can succeed and receive His blessings in our lives.
My dear saints, it’s written in today’s Scripture reading, “So the priest shall make atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering, and it shall be forgiven him” (Leviticus 5:16). What does it mean when the Scripture says here, “So the priest shall make atonement for him?” By the way what does the sin offering mean? Atonement was made when the sacrificial animal bore the sins of the people of Israel, and the way to accomplish this was through the laying on of hands. The sin offering was all about passing one’s sins to the sacrificial animal, whereupon this animal bore the person’s sins and died in his place. The wages of the sins of the people of Israel were paid off by the sacrificial animal in their place, and this was what the sin offering was all about.
When the Bible says here, “So the priest shall make atonement for him,” it means that the priest ministered to blot out the sins of this person. How did the priest then cleanse the people of Israel from their sins? The people of Israel laid their hands on their sacrificial animal before God, and the priest then offered this sacrificial animal to God, thereby cleansing away the people’s sins more than sufficiently. However, the trespass offering required a higher price for the sins of the people than these ordinary offerings. In this age of the New Testament, God has made it possible for us to bring the trespass offering by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. To save you and me from our sins, our Lord Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, and at once paid off the wages of all our sins more than sufficiently on the Cross, just as it’s written,
“So the priest shall make atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering, and it shall be forgiven him.” Who is our Priest here? It is Jesus Christ, who is the unblemished. Jesus Christ, the Son of God the holy Father, accepted our sins through His baptism and paid off all their wages on the Cross once and for all. Thanks to this work of salvation, my heart has been made sin free by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. What about you then? Have you also been made clean by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit with your heart? Have you been cleansed from all your sins by faith? Or do you still think that the work of Jesus Christ was not enough to blot out your sins, even though He bore all your sins by being baptized by John the Baptist and was crucified to death in your place?
Jesus Christ is the God who created the whole universe. God Himself had come to this earth to save mankind from sin. Having come to this earth incarnated in the flesh of man, the Lord took upon our sins by being baptized by John the Baptist and paid off all their wages more than sufficiently by being crucified. Jesus Christ bore the sins of mankind by being baptized and paid off all their wages more than sufficiently by shedding His blood. In doing so, the Lord has ensured that we the believers in the righteousness of God would lack nothing. No matter what sins we might have committed and what blemishes we might have, Jesus Christ was punished for all these sins more than sufficiently and washed them all away. By being baptized, Jesus Christ accepted all our sins and washed them away.
As our Lord Jesus Christ was baptized by John the Baptist and paid off the wages of our sins by being crucified, we the believers are compelled to praise God for His righteousness. By believing in the righteousness of God, we have come to live in God’s grace of salvation. I give all my thanks to our God. I praise the Lord for blessing our saints and God’s servants to live by faith in God’s grace of salvation.
My dear saints, how else could we praise the righteousness of God in our lives and forever? Of course, it’s all because of the righteousness of the Lord, who paid off the wages of our sins more than sufficiently. That’s why we can praise God, by believing in His righteousness and our Savior. How else could we come to the presence of God and serve His righteousness alone in our lives? It’s all because the Lord has paid off the wages of our sins more than sufficiently. It is because of the God-given gospel of the water and the Spirit that we can always serve the righteousness of the Lord alone and live in His presence. Like this, the Lord has paved the way for us to come to His presence. Just as He said, “I am the way,” the Lord is indeed the way to everlasting life, the way to Heaven, and the way to the remission of sins. He has paved the way to life more than sufficiently, so that His people may follow Him.
 
 
Do You Want to Live out Your Faith and Save Other Souls Also?
 
If so, learn about the righteousness of God and believe in it. If you attain this knowledge of the righteousness of God and have faith in it, you will be able to follow the Lord wholly in your life. Although we often fall into weaknesses in times like these, we must remind ourselves that the Lord took away all our sins. It’s absolutely important for us to be always cognizant of the fact that the Lord took away all our sins once and for all by being baptized and shedding His blood. As long as we believe in the righteousness of the Lord alone and follow it wholly, there is no need for us to worry about anything else. The Lord already paid off all the wages of our sins. If only we know this clearly and believe in it wholeheartedly, we can all live as the righteous forever.
The Scripture tells us to entrust all our burdens to the Lord. This means that God wants us to be able to follow the Lord’s desire and will for us. The Lord wants us to live by trusting in the righteousness of God alone. He wants us carry out His righteous work alone by faith. Yet, we set our sights on the things of the world all too often. Whenever we sin like this, we should say to God, “Lord, You also took away this sin once and for all. Thank You!” Our duty is preaching the gospel of the water and the Spirit. We should not set our hearts on the things of the flesh as we like.
No matter what kind of sin we commit, the Lord has already washed away all our sins more than sufficiently and paid off their wages more than sufficiently. We ought to give the offering of thanksgiving to God by always believing in His righteousness. Believing in the righteousness of God, you and I must set our purpose in life on the glory of God. From now on, we ought to rely on the righteousness of God and work diligently to save other people’s souls, rather than living just to establish our own righteousness. We must love the righteousness of God, follow it alone, and dedicate our lives in unity to the things that are pleasing to God. We must now put on the armor of the righteousness of God and live by faith in this righteousness.
In other words, we must now wage war for the salvation of people’s souls. Like this, as you and I have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, the gospel of God, we have become God’s workers living for the spreading of His righteousness. We must wage a spiritual war against Satan. God has enabled us to fight the Devil as a well-disciplined army of faith.
Can we lead a godly life by relying on the righteousness of our flesh? No, we cannot live by relying on the righteousness of our flesh. It’s absolutely indispensable for us to given our offerings to God by faith. When we were just babies, we were breastfed, but once we grew up, we ate what the grown-ups eat. Likewise, our faith in the Word of God must also grow in time. Twenty years have gone by since I first began my life of faith with you in God’s Church. Over those 20 years, we were fed spiritual milk from the Word of God. From now on we ought to live by our faith in the righteousness of God. Only if we do this can we carry out the righteous work as we carry on with our lives on this earth.
Our lives of faith should not be stuck at the same level day in and day out, year in and year out. Those who only seek the prosperity of their own flesh rather than running by trusting in the righteousness of God are bound to do foolish things. You and I ought to live with gratefulness, thanking our Lord for saving us once and for all from all the sins of this world which was more than sufficient through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. I give all my thanks to the Lord for being baptized by John the Baptist and paying off the wages of our sins.
In the Old Testament, the Lord wanted to lead the twelve tribes of Israel into the land of Canaan. After leading these descendants of Abraham into the land of Canaan, God then enabled them to conquer all the tribes that were already settled in that land. It was God’s will for the people of Israel to enter into the land of Canaan and conquer all its habitants in order to occupy it. If Abraham’s descendants did not enter into this land, and did not wage war against their enemies by faith, then clearly they could not have learnt to have faith in the righteousness of God. The Scripture writes that when the twelve tribes of Israel invaded the land of Canaan, they either conquered its habitants or dwelt with them. Why does the Bible leave such a record then? It is to reveal the righteousness of God. It was the will of God for the people of Israel to fight their enemies and conquer the land of Canaan completely. So the people of Israel had to conquer the land of Canaan, and once this was done, they had to continue to give to God all the sacrificial offerings that were pleasing to Him.
But what happened afterwards? They stopped offering sacrifices. When the people of Israel settled in the land of Canaan, at first they did give every sacrificial offering that God required from them, but eventually, they came to neglect this. What happened to the people of Israel when they started neglecting the sacrifices they were supposed to offer to God? Were their lives happy, or were they later enslaved? They were enslaved. As we carry on with our lives on this earth, we must always be mindful to offer spiritual sacrifices to God for the sake of those who are perishing for their sins. Here the spiritual offering is blotting out their sins with the gospel of the water and the Spirit. The Lord offered His body as our own sacrificial offering to remit away our sins. We ought to remember that the Lord has paid off the wages of our sins more than sufficiently through the gospel of the water and the Spirit. We ought to give God the offering of faith by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit and the righteousness of God. We ought to give this offering of faith to God for the souls that are perishing before Him also.
Indeed, you and I must always give the offering of faith to God for the salvation of other people’s souls. Praising the righteousness of God from the depth of our hearts, we must wage a spiritual war, so that everyone may see the light of salvation. It is now time for us to shine the light on the whole world with the gospel of salvation. To do this, we must unite ourselves with God’s Church while we remain in this world. If God’s Church fails to meet its calling, the people of the world will all perish spiritually. We must therefore make the gospel of the water and the Spirit known throughout the whole world. We must spread our faith on this earth and wage our spiritual war. We must also live in unity with God’s Church to proclaim His righteousness and serve it faithfully.
Do you know what it means to be one with God? It is to be one with the gospel of the righteousness of God, the gospel of the water and the Spirit. And it is to be one with the servants of the righteousness of God also. That is what is meant by true unity. To serve the righteousness of God, it is absolutely indispensable for us to live by faith in unity with God’s Church. When the hearts of the people of God cease to believe in and rely on His righteousness, they can return and turn back into Satan’s servants.
If one’s heart and mind is not set on spreading God’s gospel, then this means that the unity this person is seeing is of man, that is, he is living to serve an idol. You and I should never allow this to happen to us. Where should our focus be? It should be on the very hearts of those who are spreading the righteousness of God. We must follow God’s righteousness, and taking this righteousness as our shield of faith, we must vanquish the darkness and save souls from sin. God has raised us up so that we would preach His righteousness. To this end, the Lord has given us God’s Church and His servants. It is for this work that God allowed us to be born on this earth and find the gospel of the water and the Spirit. It is to make us carry out His righteous work that God has allowed us to remain on this earth.
However, if we do not set our hearts on preaching the gospel of the righteousness of God, then we will end up falling into the sin of idolatry in God’s sight. When we come to commit the sin of idolatry and realize this, we must bring the offering of faith to God by relying on His righteousness. Although we have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we are still weak in many aspects. We should therefore not go out to the world while in such a state. On the other hand, no matter how weak we may be, as long as we remain in God’s Church, His priests will minister righteous offerings for us whenever they are needed and guide us back to the righteous path. The Lord has paid off the wages of our sins more than sufficiently, and we ought to realize His righteousness through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, believe in it, and praise it by faith. We must devote ourselves to proclaiming this Truth throughout the whole world, that the Lord bore all our sins and blotted them all away.
My dear saints, are you grateful to the Lord for becoming our own propitiation of righteousness? As mere mortals with the flesh, what strength do we really have? What merit do we have? What power of the flesh do you have? We have none, nothing. We are so weak that even while walking, our eyes often end up drifting to stare at something that we shouldn’t. For instance, when our brothers see a well shaped woman wearing a short skirt, they can’t help but gawk at her legs. We are all such wretched sinners who cannot be saved from our sins unless we have the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Fundamentally, we are all inevitably bound to die for our sins.
Even though we have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we can still be tempted easily. How about the sisters in our Church? They are prone to get jealous of their neighbors, trying keep up with the Jones’s. When their neighbors buy something new, such as furniture or a car, they want to buy it as well in envy. Our eyes of the flesh often see many lustful and beautiful things. There are so many things that look wonderful to our eyes. Men are also drawn to material things. Even if they don’t always express it, they also like good things in life. That’s because this is in the very nature of all human beings living on this earth. However, how should we the Christians live from now on? Believing that our Lord has blotted out our sins by the gospel of the water and the Spirit was more than sufficient, and we ought to live with our hearts united with the Lord.
 
 
For Us to Follow the Righteousness of the Lord Wholly, We Must Believe in His Righteousness Wholly and Preach It in Our Lives
 
Through His self-sacrifice, the Lord has paid off the wages of our sins more than sufficiently by being baptized and shedding His blood. Our Almighty Lord Himself has paid off all the wages of our sins completely once and for all by the baptism He received from John the Baptist and the blood He shed on the Cross. Had the Lord not paid off our wages like this with His sacrifice, how else could we have followed His righteousness? Do we have the faculty to follow the Lord completely? Do we have such an ability?. No, we don’t.
 
 
The Offering Indispensable for Us
 
Let’s turn to today’s Scripture passage and read Leviticus 5:17-18 here: “If a person sins, and commits any of these things which are forbidden to be done by the commandments of the Lord, though he does not know it, yet he is guilty and shall bear his iniquity. And he shall bring to the priest a ram without blemish from the flock, with your valuation, as a trespass offering. So the priest shall make atonement for him regarding his ignorance in which he erred and did not know it, and it shall be forgiven him.” What did the Lord say about our sins, even if they are committed unknowingly? He said that they are transgressions.
For instance, as I mentioned just a short while ago, if you saw a passing woman and thought to yourself without even realizing it yourself, “Wow, she is so attractive and sexy,” this would constitute a sin that’s committed without knowing. Did anyone plan for this woman to come your way? Did you know that the woman would cross paths with you? No, that’s not the case. No one planned this, nor did you know that you would come across this woman. This is a sin that you committed subconsciously following the lust of your flesh, without even realizing it yourself. However, God said that even if you commit a sin unknowingly like this, you are still guilty. For all the people of God, the transgressions committed by them unknowingly still bring guilt to them and constitute sins. In other words, even if you sin unintentionally without any particular aim, it is clearly still a sin.
What did God then say you must do once you commit a sin like this? He said that once you commit any sin at all, regardless of whether intentionally or unintentionally, you must “bring to the priest a ram without blemish from the flock, with your valuation, as a trespass offering.” But what has already happened to your sins? Even when it comes to the sins that you commit unknowingly, our Lord has already paid off their wages more than sufficiently with His own body, by being baptized personally by John the Baptist and shedding His own blood. The Lord has made restitution for all our sins with His baptism and His blood on the Cross. With the sacrifice He made and the righteousness of God, the Lord has blotted out any and all our sins more than sufficiently, regardless of whether they are committed intentionally or unintentionally. There is only one requirement for us to reach salvation, if only we do not deny that Jesus Christ is our Savior who has blotted out all our sins once and for all with the gospel of the water and the Spirit, if only we believe in this Truth, then you and I are more than able to be saved by faith no matter what kinds of sins we commit. Like this, the Lord has freed us from the sins of the world through the gospel of the water and the Spirit, so that we may escape from the punishment and condemnation of our sins, and our hearts may be made clean.
Jesus offered His own body as your propitiation, just as it’s written, “He shall bring to the priest a ram without blemish from the flock, with your valuation, as a trespass offering. So the priest shall make atonement for him regarding his ignorance in which he erred and did not know it, and it shall be forgiven him.” That the priest passed the people’s sins to the sacrificial animal by laying his hands on its head, and thereby washed their sins away and made the animal bear their condemnation of sins in their place, implies that the remission of sins is received once and for all by all those who believe in the Truth of salvation. For all of who can’t help but commit sins and be faulty, our Lord has paid off the wages of all our sins more than sufficiently and cleansed us all.
The offerings we bring to God are absolutely indispensable. Do we then have to keep on giving such offerings? Yes, we must continue to offer them. It’s because the Lord has paid off all the wages of our sins more than sufficiently that we are now able to serve the righteous Lord. And we can also follow the righteous Lord by faith. We can praise Him for His righteousness. We can thank our Lord by faith. Precisely because the Lord has paid off the wages of our sins, we are now able to live forever and praise God in a sinless and clean state.
Let’s turn to Leviticus 4:32-35 here: “If he brings a lamb as his sin offering, he shall bring a female without blemish. Then he shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering, and kill it as a sin offering at the place where they kill the burnt offering. The priest shall take some of the blood of the sin offering with his finger, put it on the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and pour all the remaining blood at the base of the altar. He shall remove all its fat, as the fat of the lamb is removed from the sacrifice of the peace offering. Then the priest shall burn it on the altar, according to the offerings made by fire to the Lord. So the priest shall make atonement for his sin that he has committed, and it shall be forgiven him.”
The word “atonement” here means “shouldering sins.” That the sin offering was sacrificed to make atonement for a sinner means that the sacrificial animal bore the sinner’s iniquities in his place. Who then is the sin offering that bore our sins in our place? It is none other than Jesus Christ, the Lord of the water and the Spirit. Indeed, it is Jesus Christ who bore all our sins in our stead, including the sins that we commit unknowingly through the baptism He received from John the Baptist and the blood He shed on the Cross. He is the One who accepted and shouldered all our sins. That is why we say that the Lord became our own propitiation for all our sins by accepting them through His baptism. This is the very work of salvation done by Jesus Christ, our own sacrificial offering. It is Jesus Christ who shouldered all our sins once and for all. It is He who bore all our sins in our stead.
Given this, do we the believers in this gospel of the water and the Spirit then have any sin still left with us? No, of course not. Has your heart been made clean then? Have all the sins committed by you been passed on to Jesus Christ? Yes, they have. Therefore, all of us who believe in the gospel of the righteousness of God through Jesus Christ have no more sin. Now that we have become sinless, does this then mean that you should not sin anymore? While we should indeed strive not to sin, because we are all human, we can’t help but commit transgressions even after receiving the remission of sins.
Think about it. If we were capable of not sinning, then there would have been no need for the Lord bear the sins of the world by being baptized by John the Baptist. Because we still have our flesh, we still have many shortcomings, and therefore we can’t help but continue to sin. That is precisely why the Lord has saved us from all the sins of this world once and for all by being baptized by John the Baptist and bearing each and every sin on Himself. He was then crucified to death, shedding His precious blood on the Cross. Words cannot express just how grateful I am that the Lord became our own propitiation to blot out all our sins. I am so thankful that the Lord Himself became our trespass offering for our sake. Truthfully, God Himself took upon all our sins once and for all through His baptism, and He bore all the condemnation of our sins that we should have borne. The Lord bore not only all our sins but also all their punishment once and for all in our place.
The trespass offering is all about this sacrifice the Lord made for us. The smell of the sacrificial offering burning on the Altar of Burnt Offering was a sweet aroma to God, one that satisfied Him. The people of this world perished because they did not give such an offering. Even for us the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, we may also be ruined spiritually if we fail to give such an offering of faith.
Do you know just how those who do not have the gospel of the water and the Spirit have gone astray? It is not just their acts that have gone astray, rather, the very gospel they believe in is wrong. Their failure to believe in and follow the gospel of the water and the Spirit is their biggest mistake, as is their refusal to be one with the righteousness of God. Although we the believers in the gospel of the water and the Spirit have no sin regardless of how many sins we commit mistakenly, this is not the case for anyone who does not believe in the righteousness of God. So how could such people not be condemned for their sins? The one sin whose remission cannot be received from God is the sin of not believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit. Trusting only in the righteousness of the Lord and the salvation He has brought to us, all of us must believe in the baptism the Lord received from John the Baptist to bear the sins of the world, and the blood He shed on the Cross, so that we may have nothing to do with any sin anymore.
Our hearts are so hopelessly wicked that unless we have faith in the righteousness of God, we cannot be saved from all our sins. We must therefore hoist up the righteousness of the Lord and run to the end of the world. Trusting in the righteousness of God, we must run in unity with His Church. When your Church leaders say something to you, don’t just ignore them and leave them to their own devices. Instead, listen to their words with trust. If you at least listen to the servants of God by trusting them, you will come to think about what it is that you can do for God’s work and how you can do your part. Like this, carrying out the gospel work of the water and the Spirit with each of us taking up our respective tasks is what it means to be one with the righteousness of God in unity. If we otherwise fail to be in unity with the righteousness of God, then none other than this is idolatry. It is akin to worshiping something else other than God.
The people of Israel gave the offering of faith to God, and they also waged a spiritual war. Out of a grateful heart we also ought to give burnt offerings, trespass offerings, and sin offerings to God in His Church. And we ought to have the arms of faith ready to wage our spiritual war. Our workers must prepare these arms of faith in God’s Church, ready to fight their spiritual war as His faithful saints. They must be wholly united with one another for the righteousness of the Lord. The Lord told us not to worry about what to eat, what to drink, or what to wear. Give it a try yourself. Try actually living for the gospel by faith and see what will happen. All your needs will be met as a matter of course. You will have nothing more to worry about.
The sins of mankind must be judged without fail. All of us ought to be thinking long and hard about what we can do for the Lord and how we can serve Him and in what ways we can. Don’t you want to live like this before the Lord, who has blotted out all your sins more than sufficiently? I am sure that you would all like to live like this. But, are you hesitant of what it is that you should do and how? Then I ask you to listen closely to what your Church leaders are saying to you, what they are urging you to do in their sermons, and what their heartfelt desire is for you. And I ask you to serve God together with your Church leaders every step of the way. None other than this is what it means to serve God, serve the gospel, and live for the Lord. This is how you wage your spiritual war.
If you really are God’s saint, then it’s only a matter of course that you ought to wage your spiritual war and give your trespass offerings to God. Why do we keep falling into sin? Why do we succumb to our weaknesses? It’s because we do not give the trespass offering to God exactly as we should, and also because we do not follow His righteousness spiritually. We keep falling into our weaknesses because we still have not united ourselves with the Lord definitively. So, my fellow believers, I urge you to trust in our Lord who became our own trespass offering, believe in the righteous of the Lord who took upon and paid off all the wages of our sins more than sufficiently, and run to Him by this faith. I ask you to live by trusting in the righteousness of God alone. Just as the Lord said, “The just shall live by faith,” I urge you to be victorious by your faith in the righteousness of God.
Rise up by putting your faith in the righteousness of God. No matter what your circumstances are, seek the will of God, ask His servants for it, and lead your life united with the gospel of the water and the Spirit as much as possible. You will then live a victorious life without fail. Our God’s help and guidance will follow you in everything you do and wherever you go, whether at your home, at your workplace, or at the Church, in both body and spirit. The indescribable kindness and goodness of God will be with you forever. We must also remember this always. Do not follow the Lord all on your own. You must follow Him with your heart united with Him clearly and concisely. Unless you are in unity like this with Him, you will stumble. You will keep on stumbling and falling.
When you first participate in the righteous work, it may seem as if something is amiss and the work doesn’t suit your personality well, but if you stick to it, it will all come together eventually. God’s work may not seem suitable to you at first only because you have been too accustomed to sinning, but once you do it often enough by getting used to it, you will find that it suits you just fine. Think about a thief. It’s very difficult for a hardened thief to do what is right for the first time, but once the thief does it often enough, he will find it more suitable than stealing.
Among the people sitting here who have received the remission of sins by believing in the gospel of the water and the Spirit, is there anyone who is still living according to one’s own wishes? Raise your hand if you are such a person. If there are such brothers and sisters here, I urge them all to give the trespass offering at this hour. I ask them to serve the Lord by faith. Now then, do you really believe in the Lord, and that He has paid off all the wages of your sins more than sufficiently? The Lord has indeed paid off all the wages of our sins more than sufficiently. I give all my praise to the Lord for this. I ask you to walk with the Lord. Do you find it difficult? Then ask your Church leaders for prayer and guidance. And start with small baby steps. Do you feel you are not cut out for God’s work? Keep at it until it becomes second nature to you. If you feel God’s work is suitable to your liking, then suit yourself to the Lord’s liking. Your personality will then be changed to suit the Lord for sure.
Of all the people calling themselves Christians, the most foolish are those who believe according to their own wishes without knowing the gospel of the water and the Spirit. The Church leaders never say anything that is harmful to the saints. Of course, you may not understand what they are saying at first. But once you obey their instruction and follow in their footsteps, you will eventually come to realize their intention. And the Lord will help such saints. None other than this is the kind of life that all the people of God ought to lead.
Jesus Christ said that He is the way. Since the Lord said that He is the way, all that we have to do is just follow this way. Walking ahead of us, Jesus has already paved the way for us. All that remains for us to do is realize that this is the way God has set for us and walk on this path. It’s my sincerest hope and prayer that you would all experience such guidance of the Lord. I admonish you all to give it a try by exercising your faith. Give it a go and begin walking with the Lord. You will then surely see the work of the Lord unfolding right before your eyes in your own experience.
Cast aside your own wisdom and knowledge, and rely on the Lord alone. He will then guide you personally. He will make you happy. Don’t try to do everything well at first; instead, do just one thing well to begin with. Everything will then come together. I thank the Lord for giving us the trespass offering. Our Lord has blotted out all our sins more than sufficiently, so I ask you to trust in this sacrifice until the day you stand in His presence, believe in Him, and praise Him in your life. Hallelujah!