Leviticus? Yes, Leviticus Part V


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“Symbolisms of The Grain Offering, Dealing With the Yeast”

It is important to remember that in the Old Testament the Levites were specifically assigned as priest. However, in the New Testament we are all priests. First Peter 2:9-10 tells us,

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; 10 who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy. (NKJV)

 

The first symbolism that we see here is that with this offering we are the priests who will enjoy a meal with the Lord. However, that meal will take place on His terms and not ours. There are many symbolisms here, many that perhaps I am not qualify at the time to explain, but there are some that are obvious and insightful.

The grain offering was presented in three possible ways,

  • Baked (Leviticus 2:4)
  • On a Griddle (Grill) (Leviticus 2:5)
  • On a Pan (Leviticus 2:7)

Again, no matter what your financial situation may be, God was open for everybody to present his offerings. The grain was to be presented without yeast (Leviticus 2:4) and without honey (Leviticus 2:11)

The yeast symbolizes many things. Amongst these symbolism the most commons are:

  • False Teachings (Matthew 16:6-12)
  • Hypocrisy (Luke 12:1)
  • Pride and immorality (Galatians 5:9)

To make the connection of yeast/leaven with evil it is not difficult, it very clear through Scripture. So we must understand that the Grain Offering is teaching us that we most make sure that we allow God to burn false teachings out of our brain.

Do not follow denominations so blindly that you forget about the yeast of false teachings. Your offering will not be accepted that way. Many of us know that much of what is coming out of the pulpits of America today is filled with terrible doctrine. But we say nothing about it and we continue to support such foolishness.

We do not have any excuse; if you are a born again Christian you have the Holy Ghost in the inside of you and He is teaching you Himself (John 14:26). That is not for you to be an island and reject the teaching ministries in the church, but is for you to have a supernatural mechanism to know that certain teachings are not right and you most get rid of such.

Nothing makes Jesus more upset than hypocrisy. Beloved, we most be honest before the Lord. He already knows EVERYTHING about us. That realization that He knows everything will also help us to get rid of any pride in us. We are nothing without God. The only good thing in you and in me is GOD.

Immorality is rampant in our churches today; everybody is following their feelings, picking and choosing what to respect out of the Bible. It seems like today’s days the only thing important is what you can get from the Lord. Nobody wants to talk about sin for fear of offending. The politically correct spirit has taken over our society and our churches and, it is common for preachers to imply that there is other ways of making it to heaven.

What about the honey?

To be continued…

Leviticus? Yes, Leviticus Part IV


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“Introduction to The Grain Offering”

I believe that, indeed, the first mistake we make when approaching Leviticus is to think that nothing in this book is applicable to us today. The only thing that is not applicable is the fact that we do not have to sacrifice animals, bring any special food before the Lord or follow laws that were specific of those days. I am speaking mostly, of the sanitary laws. However, this book is significant, crucial and meaningful in our pursue of growing in our knowledge of Christ.

The second mistake that we make when approaching Leviticus is to simply generalize and state, “Well, all of these offerings point to Jesus.” Even as the statement is true, it becomes a lazy justification for us not going any deeper in the study of this fascinating book. 2 Peter 3:17-18 tells us,

You therefore, beloved, since you know this beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked; 18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and forever. Amen. (NKJV)

We are called to grow in grace, but also to grow in our knowledge of Christ Jesus. That knowledge will come by super natural revelation, but also by taking the time to study and showing ourselves approved (2 Timothy 2:15)

These sacrifices are mention all through the Old Testament and, if you look closely, you will quickly notice that Leviticus is not ignored in the New Testament either. As a matter of fact, there are constant references to Leviticus.

 Introduction

As we enter the discussion on the Grain Offering, I quickly realize that there is so much to understand here. Honestly, there is so much I don’t understand yet. I feel like I have been closing my eyes to something I should have looked at, long time ago.

The Grain Offering was described as a memorial, as an aroma pleasing to the Lord and as most holy. It is not to be taken lightly. Leviticus 2:1-3 tells us,

‘When anyone offers a grain offering to the Lord, his offering shall be of fine flour. And he shall pour oil on it, and put frankincense on it. He shall bring it to Aaron’s sons, the priests, one of whom shall take from it his handful of fine flour and oil with all the frankincense. And the priest shall burn it as a memorial on the altar, an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the Lord. The rest of the grain offering shall be Aaron’s and his sons’. It is most holy of the offerings to the Lord made by fire. (NKJV)

 Purpose of the Grain Offering

A memorial is basically something that has been established with the intentions of being remembered for generations to come.  It is fair to say that every time somebody presented this offering before the Lord it was a way of saying, remember this. There is nothing that indicated that this offering was mandatory.

Offerings are an act of worship; the grain offering was not the exception. The Burnt Offering, The Sin and the Trespass Offerings were related to sin; either our nature as sinners or sins committed. The Grain Offering, however, was different in nature. The Grain Offering was the only one that did not required the shedding of blood. Many view this offering as an act of thanksgiving to the Lord. This was also an offering were the sacrifice was shared with the priests.

To be continued…

Leviticus? Yes, Leviticus Part III


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“The Burnt Offering”

Have you seen any children’s pastor starting his children ministry’s first semester with the book of Leviticus? I think that many parents will probably be extremely upset if their babies come back home talking about blood and killing animals. It is said that the book of Leviticus was “the first book studied by a Jewish child” (F. Duane Lindsey, “Leviticus,” in The Bible Knowledge Commentary: Old Testament, ed. John F. Walvoord and Roy B. Zuck (Wheaton, Ill.: Victor Books, 1985), 163. – See more at: http://www.insight.org/resources/bible/leviticus.html#sthash.o4TJVA1q.dpuf) I go further, how many sermons have you heard your pastor preach on Leviticus?

As I said before, it is not my intention to go through the whole book of Leviticus; I will focus this series on the first seven chapters, that is, the discussion of the offerings or sacrifice. Lets start with the Burnt Offering.

Introduction

The burnt offering was the foundation of all the rest of the offerings. It was a symbol of total surrender to God (Leviticus 1:10). The whole animal was burned on the fire. You will see that was not the case for other offerings. Each person was responsible for presenting this offering. However, it is important to point out that this offering was voluntary (Leviticus 1:3). If it was not given with a willing heart it was not acceptable before the Lord. They were responsible for doing all the work, from killing the animal, to cleaning certain organs and other parts of the animal, etc. The priest was only responsible for the fire for the sacrifice.

 Purpose of the Burnt Offering

 Then he shall put his hand on the head of the burnt offering, and it will be accepted on his behalf to make atonement for him. Leviticus 1:4 (NKJV)

The purpose of this offering was to make atonement. Other words for atonement are, apology, amends, reparation, penance and others. The Hebrew word here is the word, kāp̱ar: A verb meaning to cover, to forgive, to expiate, to reconcile.[1]

Even as we see that it was a voluntary offering it was crucial and in reality, nobody was exempt from this offerings. Is there anybody perfect?

 Symbolism of the Burnt Offering

The voluntary status of this offering speaks to the fact that God will not force anybody to be saved. It is His will that we all be saved (I Timothy 2:4) and everybody will have a chance to make a decision for Christ, but at the end, it is up to each one of us to accept His invitation. He will give us all the tools to be saved. To start with, He gave us Jesus; He is that Young Bull, or that Sheep, or that Goat, or that Dove or Pigeon that took the punishment that we deserved, as they were kill for our sins. God will give us the faith to believe and the grace to receive the Gospel, but you and I still have the option of rejecting HIM. It should not be new news for you and I to know that people reject God every day!

 Important Things to Point Out Regarding the Burnt Offering

Notice that nobody could use the excuse that they could not afford this offering. God made it affordable for everybody, from the rich to the poor. Leviticus 1:3 speak of using a young bull; that was probably the most expensive animal. In Leviticus 1:10 the Israelites were able to use a sheep or a goat for the same sacrifice. Finally, in Leviticus 1:14 it is clear that either a dove or a pigeon were also allowed for this same offering. Meaning that God is not excluding anybody; everybody is welcome, everybody has access to His forgiveness. It was true then and it is true now.

 Conclusion

Leviticus chapter one describes the burnt offering. Notice that the children of Israel did not have the freedom to do this offering in whatever way they wanted. There was a protocol to follow, a specific way to do it and a specific place to offer this and the other offerings for that matter. This is symbolism that God has already established His ways and we are call to follow Him, not the other way around. This idea that we can follow God our way is not only unbiblical, but also demonic and is leading many to hell.

Today is a much simpler process, if you repent of your sins, confess Jesus as your Savior and Lord and receive Him with an honest heart you will be saved (Romans 10:9-10) But Romans also made reference to this concept of total surrender to God. In Romans 12:1-2 the Apostle Paul tells us,

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God. (NKJV)

The idea that we can be saved just because we repeated a prayer, but insist in living our lives according to the pattern of the world, is a false teaching and, perhaps the reason why many seated in our churches on Sunday mornings are lost.

Leviticus is a part of the Old Testament, therefore a shadow of our reality in our relationship with God today (Hebrews 10:1). We don’t have to kill any animals today in order to receive atonement; we have all the sacrifice we need in Jesus (Hebrews 10:18). However, what we should consider is this, should our commitment to God be less than our Old Testament brothers and sisters? We are operating in a better Covenant according to Hebrews 8:7-12, so why are we not found even more faithful than the Levites? Hebrews 11:39-40 tells us,

 And all these, having obtained a good testimony through faith, did not receive the promise, 40 God having provided something better for us, that they should not be made perfect apart from us. (NKJV)

Beloved, our Old Testament brothers and sister did not receive Jesus as we did. Jesus became flesh for us and started a New Covenant. Our Old Testament brothers and sisters did not have the Holy Ghost inside of them as we do. If a Levite is outdoing us in their commitment to God, perhaps it is time to seriously get into the Word, embrace discipleship, learn sound doctrine, or even check your own salvation.

To be continued…

Next, the Grain Offering!

[1] Baker, W., & Carpenter, E. E. (2003). The complete word study dictionary: Old Testament (521). Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers.