The procedure in this chapter is that which Jesus tells the leper He cleansed to go and do. (Matthew 8:2,3) Jesus said the same thing to the ten lepers He healed – though only the Samaritan came back to thank Him. (Luke 17:12-17) The atonement offering also reminded the cleansed sufferer of his greater need to be cleansed of that worse leprosy – sin.
“He [leprous person] shall be brought to the priest, and the priest shall go out of the camp, and the priest shall look.”
The priest shall go out of the camp.
Outside the camp.
In the previous chapter (13) we read of the leprous person,
“He shall remain unclean as long as he has the disease. He is unclean. He shall live alone. His dwelling shall be outside the camp.”
Hebrews points us to look deeper around what being outside the camp means, in chapter 13 we read that as the bodies of the animals that were sin offerings were burned outside the camp,
“So Jesus also suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through his own blood. Therefore let us go to him outside the camp and bear the reproach he endured.”
Being marked as unclean, having leprosy as in this passage, would mean a great deal of reproach.
You had to live alone, outside the camp of the people (apart from regular society).
Even more, you had to cry out “Unclean! Unclean!”.
We know that as leprosy is an external disease of the body, our sin is a much more terrible disease that stains our very soul.
So Jesus went outside of the city gates, walked the loneliest road, coming to a hill where He was crucified and died.
Jesus bore the reproach of our sin, unclean unclean! But instead of it marring Him, He won the day!
It is His blood shed that cleanses us, washes us whiter than snow – A once-for-all sacrifice doing what these temporal atonements we read in the old testament could not do.
Jesus as our great High Priest went outside the camp and suffered for us so that we would be made holy (sanctified).
Let us wrestle with what it means then that we should bear reproach for Him, in His Name, for His sake.
* Dear Lord God,
Please help us to take every opportunity You give to offer up ourselves as living sacrifices, day by day walking under Your will, writing Your word on our hearts.
Please show us what it means to go to You outside the camp and bear the reproach You endured when on earth in the person of Your Son.