When anyone brings a grain offering to the Lord, their offering is to be of the finest flour. They are to pour olive oil on it, put incense on it and take it to Aaron's sons the priests.Leviticus 2:1-2a
Now we come to the grain offering. Many versions call it the
meal offering. In the King James Version it is called the
meat offering because meat was the old English word for
meal. But there is no meat in it at all. In fact, this is the only one of the offerings that is bloodless. In all the others animals had to die but in this one no blood was shed.
It is obvious that the essence of this offering was that it was bread. It was food, the staff of life. This theme is the key to the grain offering. All through the Old Testament you find people offering meal offerings, often in the form of three loaves of bread. And in the tabernacle there was the showbread.
The reason for all this becomes apparent when you remember that in the New Testament, after the great miracle when he took loaves and fishes and fed five thousand people, Jesus stood before the people and said,
I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. (John 6:35). He was indicating that he himself is to be our food and that we are to feed upon all of his character and his life.
This gives us a clue to what the grain offering is depicting. It is a description of humanity as God intended it to be. This was seen in its perfect form only in Jesus Christ — the perfect, unsullied, spotless, God-pleasing humanity of the Lord Jesus. It bears relationship to us only if we as Christians are drawing from, feeding upon, the humanity of Jesus which is given to us.
I find that many people have the idea that the gospel, the good news, is that Jesus Christ died for you on the cross in order that you might go to heaven when you die. That is a portion of the gospel — it is a part of it. Unfortunately that is all of it which you hear in many places. But that is not the whole gospel by any means. If that is all you think the good news is then you have believed only a part of the gospel. The really good news is that Jesus Christ died for you in order that he might live in you. It is his living in you now which is the exciting part of Christianity. You see, if you are not linked with his humanity and all that he is, if his perfect humanity is not available to you, then you are not enjoying the fullness of the Christian life or experience, because that is what it is all about.
This is what the grain offering is looking toward. Eventually it is looking toward us — we who can say with Paul,
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me, (Galatians 2:20a KJV). His perfect humanity is available to me. All the fullness of his life, the fineness of his character, the balanced quality of his humanity is available to me. And as I draw upon it by faith, as I expect him to link himself with me and to be an indwelling part of me as I work and live, I shall find that I am privileged to present that perfect humanity back to God to be used as he wants. That is the fullness of the gospel and that is what the grain offering is all about.
Thank you for the love which is always reaching out toward me, and which never seems to stop. Take me this day, Lord, and be my God, and live through me, so that everything you are, I may be.
Is it possible to miss the core truth of authentic Christian living, resorting to our own best self-efforts? Are we ready and willing to exchange this futility for the exciting adventure of Christ living His Life through us?