Nepaug Bible Church - http://www.nepaugchurch.org - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes - http://www.nepaugchurch.org/pm/pm20000614.htm
LEVITICUS: GOD'S CALL FOR A SEPARATED WITNESS
Part I: The Path To Gaining Fellowship With God (Leviticus 1-10)
B. The Grain Offering's Revelation Of The Basis Of The Sinner's Personal Acceptance By God
Lesson: As the meal offering was offered in its NATIVE purity WITHOUT any "improvements" by the offerer save the addition of oil and incense typifying Jesus' perfect sacrifice as required by God, so WE are made acceptable to God for fellowship NOT by OUR BEST efforts, but by Christ's death FOR us!
- Various beliefs among not only world religions, but even within Christendom assert specific works or attitudes to be exhibited in order to become acceptable to God for fellowship with Him.
- However, as Romans 3:23 teaches, all of us humans have sinned, and our sin corrupts us so that we are unable to become perfect enough to be tolerable in and of ourselves unto a holy God.
- We need something more -- something beyond our own best of attitudes and works to gain acceptance before God, and that is revealed in the Grain (i.e., Meal) Offering of Leviticus 2:1-16:
- The Grain Offering's Revelation Of The Basis Of The Sinner's Personal Acceptable By God, Lev. 2:
- When a Hebrew approached God to express recognition that God's giving him grain for food meant he owed God appreciation for his life, he would bring a meal offering, Ryr. St. Bib., KJV, ftn. to Lev. 2:1.
- However, in offering this grain offering, GOD laid out certain restrictions whereby the human offerer knew he could do nothing in himself to improve the offering's acceptability or pleasantness to God:
- The meal offering had to omit any leaven, a sign of sinfulness in Scripture, Lev. 2:11a & Mtt. 16:6, 12.
- The meal offering had to omit any honey, or any human effort to sweeten the offering, Lev. 2:11b.
- The meal offering had to be seasoned with salt, a compound that preserved the state of the original grain offering ITSELF, Leviticus 2:13.
- Additionally, the meal offering was to be typically saturated with (olive) oil and topped with incense, and in that condition ignited on the altar as an aroma-producing sacrifice that God accepted as holy, 2:1-2.
- What was not burned up of the grain was given to the priests for their food of sustenance, Lev. 2:3, 10.
- This sacrifice typifies the perfect life of Christ which must be substituted in sinful man's place of even his best personal righteousness for him to have fellowship with a holy God:
- As there could be no leaven in the offering, God expects absolute sinless perfection before one can fellowship with Him, and that is not possible by any mortal effort as all men have sinned, Rom. 3:23.
- As man's best efforts to IMPROVE his standing before God still falls short of God's glory, seen in the fact that God denied the use of any honey to make the meal offering sweeter so as to gain more acceptance with God, so our best righteousness are as filthy rags before God, Isa. 64:6; Rom. 3:20.
- However, Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, lived a totally perfect life so that His life, offered up in its simple purity without any "improvement" of sinful man's works, is acceptable as man's substitutionary sacrifice for us, 2 Corinthians 5:21. Thus, the "salt" was used in the meal offering to show God's desire that we look to the purity already found in Jesus Christ as our substitutionary sacrifice.
- The ingredients mixed with the meal offering reveal various aspects of Christ's perfect life:
- As oil often pictures the Holy Spirit, Jesus was endowed by God the Holy Spirit to do the will of God: (a) Dr. J. Vernon McGee writes that Jesus was born of the Spirit in Luke 1:35, corresponding to the meal offering's being "mingled with oil" in Lev. 2:4-5; (b) that He was baptized of the Spirit in Matt. 3:16-17 corresponding to the meal offering's having "oil upon it" in Lev. 2:6; (c) that Jesus was led of the Spirit in Mark 1:12, corresponding to the meal offering's having oil "poured thereon" it in Lev. 2:6; and that Jesus taught, did miracles and offered Himself on the cross in the Spirit's power "with oil", Lev. 2:7. (McGee, Thru The Bible with J. Vernon McGee, vol. 1, p. 331)
- The incense gave off a strong odor when the sacrifice was lit on the altar, and this typified the acceptability of Christ's offering of His life in our place on the cross before a holy God, Is. 53:10-11
Application: (1) If we want to fellowship with God, we CANNOT do so by even our best efforts, but come to Him by faith alone in Christ's death for us. (2) As believers, we must never try to "butter up" our works to find God's favor, but live by God's power to do GOD'S will for acceptable life and service.