Nepaug Bible Church - http://www.nepaugchurch.org - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes - http://www.nepaugchurch.org/pm/pm20071226.htm
THRU THE BIBLE EXPOSITION
Leviticus: Fellowship With A Holy God
Part I: Acceptable Relationship With A Holy God, Leviticus 1:1-7:38
F. Clarification Of The Offerings, Leviticus 6:8-7:38
7. Clarification Of Meal Portions: The Limit And Extent Of Being Honored In Serving God
Lesson: Since the fat and the blood of sacrificial animals typified the BASIS of the sinner's redemption and sanctification that ONLY GOD produced, NO HUMAN could have the honor of eating them! Yet, if GOD was honored for his GRACE with these portions, there were DEGREES of HONOR God supplied for those who SERVED Him in meeting the needs of His people BASED UPON INITIATIVE and WORK, and this honor was typified in the value of the portions of the meat that each could have!
- Jesus said that if anyone served Him, God the Father would honor him before others, John 12:26.
- However, there has to be a balance in this matter of human honor before the Lord: though we are to be motivated to seek God's blessing of being honored by Him before others in serving the Lord, we dare not accept the honor that is due only to the Lord!
- Leviticus 7:22-38 illustrates via typology the limits and extent of the honor God's servants receive in such service to the Lord that we might understand this proper balance we are to have in seeking His honor:
- Clarification Of Meal Portions: The Limit And Extent Of Being Honored In Serving God.
- Summarizing the clarifications on the offerings in Leviticus 7:22-38, Moses noted that no human being, including any Aaronic priest, was to partake of the fat and blood of animals, Leviticus 7:22-27. These stipulations reveal that to God alone belonged those portions of the animals used in sacrifice that address typologically the BASIS of fellowship with God as established in the cross of Christ (as follows):
- The fat portions of the sacrificial animals were always among those portions that were to be burned on the altar as belonging to God for His satisfaction, cf. Leviticus 7:31a with 7:25b. Since the wrath of the Creator God against man's sin is the foundation for redemption and resulting fellowship that sinners can have with a holy God (Romans 3:20, 21-26), only GOD could have the honor of "partaking" of the animal's fat, for the glory of man's salvation and sanctification belonged to God alone!
- The sacrificial animal's blood represented its life, so that the shedding of its blood signified the death of the sacrificial animal, cf. Leviticus 17:11; accordingly, since only the death of Christ could atone for the sins of sinners apart from any merit or work on the sinner's part (Ephesians 2:8-9), no person could partake of the blood of animals in honor of Christ Who shed His blood for man's sins, Leviticus 17:12.
- However, once all the honor was granted to God for the justification and sanctification of the sinner, God indicated He graciously honored those servants of His who showed initiative and work in serving Him as seen in His sharing of the parts of the sacrificial animals according to their initiative and work, 7:28-38:
- When a sacrificer brought a peace offering to the Lord at the tabernacle, once the animal's blood had been properly shed unto the Lord, and its fat portions set aside for burning unto the Lord on the altar (Leviticus 7:28-30a, 31a), the breast portion was to be waved in a sideways motion before the altar as unto the Lord, and was to be used for the food of all the priests in general, Leviticus 7:30b, 31b; Bible Knowledge Commentary, Old Testament, p. 185-186.
- However, the priest that took the initiative to officiate the sacrifice was alone to receive the prized right thigh portion, a portion to be "heaved" in an up-and-down motion before the Lord's altar, Leviticus 7:32-33 NIV, ESV; Ibid., p. 186. This would provide special honor for the officiating priest before fellow priests who were to settle for the less-honored breast portion, and before the officiating priest's family and the rest of the onlookers in the congregation of Israel!
- This institution of the "waved" breast portion for all the priests and the "heaved" right thigh portion for the officiating priest became a perpetual statute throughout Israel's history, Leviticus 7:34-38.
Application: (1) May we honor GOD ALONE for our STANDING in Him, but (2) exhibit initiative and work to address the needs of fellow believers to gain God's blessing of honor, 2 Timothy 2:5, 6, 7!