What is the major concern of Leviticus 17:10-14?

What is the major concern of Leviticus 17:10-14? Let's find out.


The major concern of this passage is with the prohibition of eating blood (verses 10, 12, 14). However, it also informs us that when an animal sacrifice is offered (instead of other acceptable means of atonement) for the expiation of sin it is the blood that makes atonement: ". . . the blood . . . I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls. . ." (Leviticus 17:11).

The sacrificial atonement system of the Mosaic Law was given exclusively to the Jewish people: "I have given it [the blood] to you . . . to make atonement for your souls." Non-Jews could find remission of sin through sincere confessionary repentant prayer (Jonah 3:5-10).

There are also spatial limitations set by Leviticus 17:11 on where the blood shed for atonement may be offered. Leviticus 17:11 say specifically, "I have given it [the blood] . . . upon the altar." Biblically, the sacrificial animal's blood is acceptable to God only if offered "upon the altar," first, that of the Tabernacle, and later of the Temple. The Temple is the sole designated area in which the animal sacrificial system is permissible. Once the Temple was built, no altar might properly be built or sacrifice offered outside the Temple in Jerusalem (Deuteronomy 12:5-6, 11; 16:2, 5-6).

Of the sacrificial requirements, God says regarding the Temple "there you shall bring all that I command you" (Deuteronomy 12:11) and "there you shall do all that I command you" (Deuteronomy 12:14). In particular, the paschal lamb is mentioned as only being permitted to be sacrificed in the Temple (Deuteronomy 12:5-6, 11).

The Temple is not an allegorical notion but an actual geographical area. Therefore, referring to Jesus' body as a temple (John 2:21) is biblically unacceptable. In the context of Leviticus 17:11, his death was in no way a valid sacrificial offering.