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Years ago, a Soviet nuclear submarine was conducting a training exercise in the North Atlantic. Suddenly, a pipe burst—one carrying coolant to the nuclear reactor. In the reactor room, the temperature quickly rose to 140 degrees; the radiation level soared. The reactor had to be fixed or radiation would poison the sea and cause major destruction. The captain asked volunteers to go in and install a new system. The men worked in 3-man shifts for 5–10 minutes, wearing raincoats and gas masks for protection. They fixed the pipe, but within two hours, none of them were recognizable. Eight died within hours; 14 died within two years. Sin is deadly like radiation. Yet it can harm not only the body, but the soul and spirit. A raincoat and gas mask couldn’t protect those sailors; neither can our puny efforts save us from the ultimate harm of sin and evil. In ancient Israel, God showed that only His prescribed sacrifices could atone for their sins—even temporarily. We learn from Leviticus chapter 22 that only perfect animals could atone for their sins. This sufficed until God’s perfect Son became human and offered the perfect sacrifice for sin. Only God’s Son is the perfect remedy for the harm sin and evil can inflict on people.

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