Then the Lord called to Moses and said to him from the meeting tent, Speak to the Israelites and say to them: When any of you present a livestock offering to the Lord, you can present it from either the herd or the flock (1:1-2, CSB).
The Lord is deliberate in teaching the Israelites how they can pursue reconciliation with God. The person was to put their hand on the head of the sacrificed animal, so they could be given reconciliation. This was before Christ came, and was not an “one time” sin offering. Unlike the sacrifice through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ, the people had to continue make sacrifices – to be given reconciliation – restoration with their heavenly Father.
It is important to note how these worship tools of the old, were described: “The priest will then completely burn all of it on the altar as an entirely burned offering, a food gift of soothing smell to the Lord (1:9b).”
They were a sweet smelling aroma. This was acceptable to God.
The burnt sacrifice was designed to propitiate the anger of God incurred by original sin, or by particular transgressions; and its entire combustion indicated the self-dedication of the offerer—his whole nature—his body and soul—as necessary to form a sacrifice acceptable to God (Ro 12:1; Php 1:20). – Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary
In chapter 1, entirely burned and flawless male are two phrases that immediately stand out to me – as I read through the chapter. Jesus Christ is our spotless Lamb. He who knew no sin, became for us our sin offering. There is no need for additional sacrifices to atone for our sins, because Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world. He is enough. He is the source of our salvation.
For you know that you were redeemed from your empty way of life inherited from your fathers, not with perishable things like silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of an unblemished and spotless lamb (1 Peter 1:18-19).
Chapter 2 –
The offering we give to God – has to be deliberate. God reminds us that it was about choice flour. It wasn’t throwing together something at the last minute, to give unto God. But, it was an act of worship that took time and a lot of heart.
It is called first choice offering, requiring thought and action.
Thus offered, the grain is described as a memorial, an aroma pleasing to the Lord (see 2:2). Implicit in the term is the idea that the offerer remembers God’s constant grace in providing one’s daily food (Asbury Commentary).
While we are still in the Old Testament, we are reminded of the importance of salt. Salt signifies something great. Salt gives flavor, and leaves an impact. Things are never the same again with salt.
You must season all your grain offerings with salt. Do not omit the salt of your God’s covenant from your grain offering. You must offer salt with all your offerings (vv. 13).
Let’s resolve to keep remembering the covenant God has made with us – through His Son Jesus Christ. We have been given new life, where we can completely start over. Our worship is given, in light of our covenant with God and His enduring grace. Our worship offerings are for Jesus and to expand the kind of relationship we have with Jesus the Christ – our Savior and King.
How can we draw nearer to God and allow Him to leave His influence on our lives – enabling us to be “the salt of the earth”?
Featured image by Bonnie Kittle.