Reading: “Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of God, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?” —Hebrews 10:29
The laws regarding blood in Leviticus 17:13ff (“Any man also of the people of Israel, or of the strangers that sojourn among them, who takes in hunting any beast or bird that may be eaten shall pour out its blood and cover it with dust”) not only teach us the sanctity of life, keep before us the virtue of the blood, but they also teach us the sacredness of all that is associated with sacred things.
All that is connected with God and with His worship, especially all that is connected with His revelation of Himself for our salvation, is to be treated with the most profound reverence.
Even though the blood of the deer killed in the chase could not be used in sacrifice, yet, because it was blood it must be treated with a certain respect, and be always covered with earth. It is the fashion of our age—and one which is increasing in an alarming degree—to speak lightly of things which are closely connected with the revelation and worship of the holy God. This irreverent treatment of holy things is a crying evil in many parts of the English-speaking world. We need to beware of it. Against everything of this kind the spirit of this law warns us.
Nothing which is associated in any way with what is sacred is to be spoken of or treated irreverently, lest we thus come to think lightly of the sacred things themselves. The blood of Christ, which represented that holy life which was given on the cross for our sins, is holy—an infinitely holy thing!
(Adapted from S. H. Kellogg, The Book of Leviticus, 378–379)
O sacred Head, now wounded, with grief and shame weighed down,
Now scornfully surrounded with thorns, Thine only crown;
O sacred Head, what glory, what bliss till now was Thine!
Yet, though despised and gory, I joy to call Thee mine.
—Attributed to Bernard of Clairvaux