Leviticus 2 Commentary
In chapter 1 we looked at burnt offerings, cattle, sheep/goats or birds. Now chapter 2 begins with grain offerings. Only a handful was burnt. The rest was consumed by the Aaronic priests. The smaller portion is consumed by the LORD while the bigger portion is consumed by Aaron and his sons. It sets for us a pattern of generosity. Man takes the bigger portion. God loves us more than we love Him. We have the bigger portion of God’s generosity.
The bread was to have no yeast and the prescription included oils for different bread types. Again only a portion was used up and the rest was given to the priests. Salt was to be added to every offering as a preservative, an indication of need to preserve the covenant between the LORD and His people.
The offering of first fruits was provisioned for and had the looks of the other grain offerings. It appears the rule was relaxed with first fruit offerings regarding the use of yeast. But generally yeast was to be avoided.
Interestingly, the Bible mentions grain offerings, though the required offering was in form of flour or bread. Today saints can bring money instead of flour or animals. This would be like processed grain, flour or bread. Instead of offering an actual service, sweeping the church for example, this offering can be processed and an amount equivalent to sweeping can be offered at the Sanctuary. The problem today is that processed offerings (money) amount to nothing when converted back to a service or a product at the Sanctuary.
Verse 16 is similar to verse 17 of chapter 1 in emphasis. These offerings are food offerings to the LORD. They represent our generosity in sharing our food with our God. In this particular chapter we have seen that a larger portion of what the people give to the LORD is given back to the men who are serving in the tabernacle.
Feeding the LORD in the New Testament may come in form of giving “to the least of my brothers”. The LORD needs more in the New Testament including clothes, water and visitation among other things. The scripture here teaches me the importance of giving valuable portions to the poor, not just my rejects. Again the thought that I’m giving to the LORD should inspire me to do more.
The burning of food in fire can be thought of as a way in which the LORD consumes the food. In Exodus the LORD appeared to Moses in a fire or as fire. And significantly, the entire community of God’s people came to associate the significance of the LORD’S presence with fire, given the many physical appearances in form of fire. In addition they enjoyed God’s constant company in form of a Pillar of fire by night.
We also observe that the food had to be prepared with maximum care and done to the highest standard possible. It’s meant for someone very important – in fact someone most important. In chapter 1 the animals selected were physically in perfect condition and had to be washed thoroughly before being subjected to fire. In chapter 2 the flour had to be of the highest standard. In chapters 1 and 2 the concept of sacrifices is simple: feeding the LORD.
The second part of Exodus saw man construct a house for the LORD. Now that the LORD is well accommodated, Leviticus chapters 1 and 2 are about man providing food for the LORD.
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