“If he offer it for a thanksgiving, then he shall offer with the sacrifice of thanksgiving unleavened cakes mingled with oil, and unleavened wafers anointed with oil, and cakes mingled with oil, of fine flour, fried.” – Leviticus 7:12
This is the month of Thanksgiving, a time for reflection on the testings and blessings of our lives. Yes, even trials and testings are to be given thanks for because they serve to make us stronger than we were before. And blessings because they are a sign of God’s goodness to us. Sadly, most of us receive these blessings without so much as a thank you. And we often take them for granted, that is until they are taken away.
But, thanksgiving is so important for our well being that God even gave a special offering for it called the sacrifice of Thanksgiving. It was to be given with unleavened cakes mingled with oil. The cakes represent bread which is the staff of life and later Jesus who is the ‘bread of life’. In other words all the things that work on our behalf to bring forth life. They were to be ‘unleavened’ which means not tainted by sin that corrupts and destroys the life intended. This sacrifice is later referred to in the New Testament in the Lord’s Supper where Paul writes –
“For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner (in sin) eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body.” – 1 Cor. 11:29
Then the cakes were also to be mingled with oil, which represented the Holy Spirit. It was the Holy Spirit that Jesus sent to be with us when He rose into the heavens. He is to be our teacher and He alone can lead us to repentance. He is the One who will prepare us to be ready to meet the Lord when He returns. He makes the difference between the five foolish bridesmaids and the five wise bridesmaids (Matt. 25:1-12).
A key truth in this thought is – being thankful prepares you for the Holy Spirit to work in your life. Unthankfulness hinders His work. Also, in this sacrifice wafers of fine flour mingled with oil are used. On this point, I will let you seek out God’s hidden message in this sacrifice –
- How does flour become ‘fine’ flower?
- Why wafers and not loaves?
The answer can be found in this Psalm – “For His anger (testing) is but for a moment, His favor is for life; Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.” – Psalm 30:5
Thanksgiving is a time for family and friendships. I pray that this Thanksgiving you will give thanks for God’s goodness to you. Remember, you don’t have to have a big turkey meal to give thanks – Paul and Silas were bound in prison and they gave thanks and God opened the prison for them!
“But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed.” – Acts 16:25,26
I wrote the above teaching in 2017 but, this years Thanksgiving will be different for me. My family will be missing two members this year; my wife of 60 years and one of my sons who lost his battle with cancer. I have been tested in a way that I didn’t expect and was not prepared for. All the things you wished you had said and done remind you of the painful loss. But then, the Holy Spirit reminds you of the promises Jesus gave us –
“And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” – John 6:40
and as Jesus told the thief on the cross –
“And Jesus said to him, “Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.” – Luke 23:43
There is coming a day when their bodies will rise again, meanwhile their soul and spirits are alive with Christ in Paradise. Though I miss them both terribly, I look forward to a joyous reunion when the dead in Christ shall rise and we who are alive shall also rise.
My son, Israel’s children have recorded a new song to celebrate this joyous occasion.
Used by permission from Day of Eternity