Day 6: The Grain or Meat Offering.
‘‘And when any will offer a meat offering unto the LORD, his offering shall be of fine flour; and he shall pour oil upon it, and put frankincense thereon…’’ Lev. 2:1
Additional reading: Num. 15:4; Lev.5:11
The grain or the meat offering was next in line. Moses was again detailed by God and rules were to be adhered to. God told him: ‘‘And when any will offer a meat offering unto the LORD, his offering shall be of fine flour; and he shall pour oil upon it, and put frankincense thereon:
A quick examination will reveal certain things: ‘‘And when any will offer [qarab — a primitive root; to approach (causatively bring near) for whatever purpose:- approach, case to approach, bring, cause to bring, bring forth, bring near, come, cause to come near, come nigh, draw near, be at hand, join, be near, offer, present, produce…] a meat [minha … from an unused root meaning to apportion, i.e. bestow; a donation; euphemistically tribute; specifically a sacrificial offering (usually bloodless and voluntary):- gift, oblation, offering, meat offering, present, sacrifice] offering [qorban — something brought near the altar, i.e. a sacrificial present: – oblation, that is offered, offering] unto the LORD, his offering shall be of fine flour; and he shall pour oil upon it, and put frankincense thereon…’’
The grain or the meat offering was simply a tribute unto the LORD. In other words, it was a thanksgiving offering. ‘‘When you offer sacrifices to give thanks to me, you must use only your finest flour. Put it in a dish, sprinkle olive oil and incense on the flour…’’ (CEV). This was very different from the burnt offering that atoned for sins — as it was completely consumed. On the contrary, only a part of the meat offering was burnt.
The thanksgiving offering was to express ones appreciation (honour and respect) towards God for God’s blessings upon the works of his hands. God is the creator of the universe, the provider and owner of all things. It was, therefore, expedient to say ‘thank you,’ to God by taking a portion of one’s fruit of labour and set it apart as holy and present it before the LORD. It was a kind of a first fruit offering.
Now, note the rules attached to this offering: (1.) ‘‘None of the grain offerings which you present to the LORD may be made with yeast; you must never use yeast or honey in food to the LORD.’’ (vs. 11 GNB). Yeast is symbolic of sin — it grows in bread dough just the way sin grows in human life. Yeast and honey were also used to aid fermentation, which result in decomposition and decay. This too is associated with sin. Therefore, it could not be part of a holy offering unto the LORD. Honey and yeast were also believed to represent pride and hypocrisy. (2.) ‘‘Season every presentation of your Grain – Offering with salt. Don’t leave the salt of the covenant with God out of your Grain – Offerings. Present all your offerings with salt.’’ (vs.13 MSG). Salt was to remind Israel of their covenant relationship with God. It preserves, has the ability to penetrate and aids in healing. All these properties of salt show God’s activity in man. By asking them to season their gifts with salt, God was indicating His desire to be active in their lives. Salt is also used to seal agreements. And the moment this was done the agreement was permanent — irrevocable. Please read Matthew 5:13; 16:6; Mark 8:15; 9:49 – 50.
In summary, the grain or meat offering was a voluntary act of worship done in recognition of God’s goodness and providence, thus, signifying ones commitment and devotion to the LORD. The relevance of this offering to the body of Christ today is that Jesus was the perfect man who surrendered Himself to God and the entire human race.
Meditation: In what ways do I express my appreciation towards God for all His blessings?
Prayer: Accept my gift offering today. This is a token of my appreciation for all You have done for me. Note: You may wish to offer to the LORD a real gift offering today.