And when any will offer a meat offering to the LORD, his offering shall be of fine flour; and he shall pour oil on it…
In our remarks upon the two first of these verses, we viewed the minchah, or meat offering, as a type of Christ. Upon this point additional light may be incidentally thrown as we now proceed to consider the feast upon the minchah. For this we hold to be designed to represent our fellowship with God in Christ.
I. FEASTS HAVE EVER BEEN REGARDED AS TOKENS OF FRIENDSHIP.
1. Secular history abounds in examples.
(1) These date back to very ancient times. The ancient Egyptians, Thracians, and Libyans made contracts of friendship by presenting a cup of wine to each other. Covenants were made by the ancient Persians and Germans at feasts. The Pythagoreans had a symbol, "Break no bread," which Erasmus interprets to mean "Break no friendship."
(2) Similar usages still obtain. It would be considered amongst us a most incongruous thing for persons at enmity deliberately to sit down at the same table. So according to our laws, if a person drinks to another against whom he has an accusation of slander, he loses his suit, because this supposes that they are reconciled.
2. Sacred history also furnishes examples.
(1) Isaac and Abimelech made a covenant with a feast (Genesis 26:30, 31); so did Jacob and Laban (Genesis 31:54); so did David and Abner (2 Samuel 3:20).
(2) The verb (ברה, bern) to eat, in the Hebrew, if not the root of the word (ברית, berith), covenant, is at least a kindred word.
(3) Hence in apostolic times, Christians were forbidden to eat with wicked persons (1 Corinthians 5:11; see also Galatians 2:12). It must never be forgotten that the "friendship of the world is enmity against God."
II. THE FEAST OF THE MEAT OFFERING WAS A SYMBOL OF FELLOWSHIP WITH GOD.
1. The "memorial" of the minchah was God's meat.
(1) The offerer separated a portion of the mass, which was called the memorial, or representation of the whole. Thus he took from the bulk of the fine flour a handful. To this he added a suitable proportion of oil. The whole of the frankincense was devoted.
(2) The priest then burnt the complete memorial upon the altar of burnt offerings.
(3) God signified his acceptance of it by consuming it in fire, which was not of human kindling, but had issued from his Shechinah. The portion thus consumed was regarded as "God's food," or "meat," of the offering which he was pleased to accept. This was one part of the feast.
2. The remnant was then eaten by the priests.
(1) The priests here are not to be viewed as types of Christ. The high priest alone seems to have represented him (Hebrews 3:1; Hebrews 8:1; Hebrews 9:11).
(2) The common priests were representatives rather of the holy people. Hence the whole nation of Israel were regarded as a "kingdom of priests" (Exodus 19:6). The people, therefore, and in particular the offerer, representatively, feasted with God.
(3) Under the gospel even this official representation is changed. The people of God are now an holy priesthood, not by representation, but in right of their spiritual birth (1 Peter 2:9). They draw nigh unto God (Hebrews 10:19-22). They feast with him at his table and in his very Presence.
(4) All this, amongst many other blessed things, is set forth in the Christian Eucharist, or Supper of the Lord.
III. CHRIST IS THE MEDIUM OF THIS FELLOWSHIP.
1. Obviously so since the minchah was a type of Christ.
(1) This has been sufficiently shown (see Homily on verses 1, 2).
(2) We may add that the argument is sustained by the use of the term "memorial." When the firstling of the cattle was taken instead of the rest, it is called making a memorial to God (Exodus 34:19; see Hebrew text). This represented the taking of the Great Firstborn instead of all men, and the firstling of the cattle was only a memorial, not the real sacrifice.
(3) It is a great truth that Christ is our one way of access to God (John 14:6). "He is our peace;" and it is through the frankincense of his presence that our offering becomes a "sweet savour " - a savour of rest, "unto the Lord" (verses 2, 9).
2. Christ is delectable food to faith.
(1) Sometimes in the minchah the flour was unbaked (verse 2). In this case the oil accompanying it was unmingled. The portion reserved for the priests might, therefore, be mingled by them in any way they pleased to render it most palatable.
(2) In other cases the bread was prepared to their hands. Sometimes baken in the oven in cakes, mingled with oil, or in unleavened wafers, with oil poured upon them (verse 4). Sometimes in a pan or fiat plate, mingled with oil or oil poured over it (verses 5, 6). Sometimes in the frying-pan or gridiron, with oil (verse 7).
(3) The bread of life is essentially good and nourishing. It is at the same time capable of being served up in such variety as to suit every taste that is not vicious. It is the privilege of the scribe instructed in the kingdom to bring out "things new and old," to set old things in new lights, and to show that there is "nothing new under the sun; for all things are as old as the councils of eternity. - J.A.M.
Parallel VersesKJV: 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: