A brief look at who does the sinning and who does the killing of the sacrificial animal. Or, in another way of thinking, in the form of a question, who is responsible for taking the innocent life to atone for the sin committed?
Anointed Priest: "He shall bring the bull to the entrance of the tent of meeting before the LORD and lay his hand on the head of the bull and kill the bull before the LORD." Lev 4:4
Whole Congregation: "And the elders of the congregation shall lay their hands on the head of the bull before the LORD, and the bull shall be killed before the LORD. Lev 4:15
Leader: "[He] shall lay his hand on the head of the goat and kill it in the place where they kill the burnt offering before the LORD; it is a sin offering." Lev 4:24
Common People: "And he shall lay his hand on the head of the sin offering and kill the sin offering in the place of burnt offering. Lev 4:29
I never noticed that before! The person, or representative of the persons who realized their unintentional sin, is the one who must get the bull/goat/sheep, bring it to the Temple, lay his very own hand on its head to say "Yes, I am guilty," and then he has to take its life. Not the priest, but the very sinner. Talk about repentance. I suppose you could go through the motions, since HaShem's word makes it clear that they did from time to time, but wow, how much harder must it have been? To just walk through the steps of repentance, like so many of us do, when you had to kill something to show your repentance? Yikes! I think our church buildings would nearly empty if that were still the case today.
But that is what we are supposed to have in mind when we accept that Yeshua lived a perfect life and then allowed that perfect life to be sacrificed so we could walk free and blameless. We are to be walking ourselves into that Temple, putting our hand on His head, and driving in the nail. Not only are we the cause of His death, but we must take part in it. Not as blood thirsty men, but as sorrowful, repentant sinners. He is our atoning sacrifice.