The Priest Shall Go Out of the Camp

The Lord spoke to Moses, saying:

Leviticus 14:1 — Modern English Version (Thinline Edition.; Lake Mary, FL: Passio, 2014)

It was Moses who got a direct revelation from God. I ponder over that, especially in light of what follows in this part.

This shall be the law of the leper in the day of his cleansing: It shall be reported to the priest, and the priest shall go out of the camp, and the priest shall examine him and see if the disease is healed in the leprous person.

Leviticus 14:2–3 — Modern English Version (Thinline Edition.; Lake Mary, FL: Passio, 2014)

Watch the types and shadows intertwined here. You will probably see more than addressed in this post. But let’s start with the first… Leprosy. It is a Biblical typification of sin. It would follow that a letter would typify all of us in our sin. A leper cleansed of leprosy would be representative of a sinner saved.

The next typology is the priest. And in some ways, his role points to Jesus in subtle ways. The first is factual. It is the priest who declared leprosy on the individual and created the exile. Think back to the garden where Adam sinned. He was expelled from God’s garden. (I could hope that we think together that God’s garden is where He lives and does business. That’s a simple way to think of something that is far greater in importance than just a garden.)

Much more of a representation is that the priest shall go out of the camp.

Remember, this isn’t a ritual to heal a leper. It is for the priest to declare that person cleansed. The priest had to travel outside of the camp… Or garden. He has to go to the place of exile. This is a foretelling of a necessary thing, God will leave His abode and come to the leper in exile.

The priest leaves his place and comes to the one healed of a disease that left him outside of society. This was the ritual to proclaim the leper cleansed and how such would repented society.

In one sense, the overt text is dealing with a person being declared clean. But just under the surface are hints to something far greater. The leper was ostracized by the priest. He was sent away from his family and people.

God is explaining His plan. He is going to undo the ill effects of what transpired in Eden. He will do it by coming to us.

We have the benefit of the New Testament writings. There are many that explain what lingers just inside the plain text. These show that God took on humanity, humbling Himself. This we can read for ourselves.

But those that didn’t have the benefit of the New Testament are given a veiled glimpse into the future. One that shows the panorama of history written in advance. And God will continue to intervene personally.

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