The cleansing process for someone who had leprosy, to allow them back into the temple and among society, was quite an ordeal. You can compare leprosy to sin; as we learned in the September 28, 2023 lesson, it was an act of God’s judgment upon a sinful person. The lepers were separated from everything they loved and made to live outside of camp. Though there is a lot to this procedure, one significant example of this process is the ritual of offering the doves. They were to bring two; one to sacrifice over a bowl of water where the blood mixed with the water, and then the other was to be washed in the blood and water, then released.
Much of what we learn in the New Testament is lost because we’ve not studied the Old Testament. I am overwhelmed by the details missed because of only lingering in the New Testament.
Initially, the leper had to go to the priest to be diagnosed with leprosy, similar to us recognizing our sinful state and being separated from God like the leper sent to dwell outside of camp. The disease could be long or short, depending on how long God intends to keep them in that state. Once healed, they were to bring the two doves to the priest. That’s when he killed one and released one.
All this said was to prepare you for the short comparison. So, the washing of the living dove in the blood from the one that was sacrificed, and the blood mixed with water is much like the blood and water that poured out of Jesus when they pierced his side as he hung on the cross. We are like the living dove, cleansed by the living water of Jesus and set free from our sins.
He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. John 7:38
And the priest shall command that one of the birds be killed in an earthen vessel over running water: As for the living bird, he shall take it, and the cedar wood, and the scarlet, and the hyssop, and shall dip them and the living bird in the blood of the bird that was killed over the running water: And he shall sprinkle upon him that is to be cleansed from the leprosy seven times, and shall pronounce him clean, and shall let the living bird loose into the open field. Leviticus 14:5-7