Leviticus 12 (Listen)
12:1 The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “Speak to the people of Israel, saying, If a woman conceives and bears a male child, then she shall be unclean seven days. As at the time of her menstruation, she shall be unclean. 3 And on the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. 4 Then she shall continue for thirty-three days in the blood of her purifying. She shall not touch anything holy, nor come into the sanctuary, until the days of her purifying are completed. 5 But if she bears a female child, then she shall be unclean two weeks, as in her menstruation. And she shall continue in the blood of her purifying for sixty-six days.
6 “And when the days of her purifying are completed, whether for a son or for a daughter, she shall bring to the priest at the entrance of the tent of meeting a lamb a year old for a burnt offering, and a pigeon or a turtledove for a sin offering, 7 and he shall offer it before the LORD and make atonement for her. Then she shall be clean from the flow of her blood. This is the law for her who bears a child, either male or female. 8 And if she cannot afford a lamb, then she shall take two turtledoves or two pigeons, one for a burnt offering and the other for a sin offering. And the priest shall make atonement for her, and she shall be clean.”
And when the days of her purifying are completed, whether for a son or for a daughter, she shall bring to the priest at the entrance to the tent of meeting a lamb a year old for a burnt offering, and a pigeon or a turtledove for a sin offering. (Leviticus 12:6)
Giving birth is quite an experience. A woman carries her child for nine months, gives birth, and goes through a healing process afterwards. We are born in a mess, both physically and spiritually. In this chapter we read that after giving birth, a woman was required to offer an atonement sacrifice for purification, not because she had sinned, but because she was ceremonially unclean. She knew that by giving birth, she would become unclean. She also knew that birth would bring upon new life. Christ sacrificed himself for our atonement to purify us from our mess in order that we may have life. Great burdens and trials are faced to receive and celebrate the joy of a new life. Praise God for we are purified and declared clean!