3 And will make an offering by fire unto Yahweh, a burnt offering, or a sacrifice in performing a vow, or in a freewill offering, or in your solemn feasts, to make a sweet savour unto Yahweh, of the herd, or of the flock:
They were feasts in which the whole nation was called upon to take part, and in which they were enabled to take part by the plenty secured for all by the blessing of Abraham's God, and by the operation of the splendid land law he had given them, by which the wealth of the land was kept permanently divided among all. They were feasts with an ennobling tendency.
They were not mere secular holidays like Gentile holidays-not mere times of merriment. More gladsome than any Gentile holiday, they were times when God asked the nation to meet Him collectively, and to call to mind the great things He had done for them in the past, to remember His law, and to rejoice with a grateful joy before Him in all the plenty He had bestowed upon them.
A well-dressed, well-provided, healthy, and prosperous multitude coming together under such auspices, in such a beautiful country, for such a length of time, once every three or four months (speaking roughly), presents such a picture of effective human life as has never been seen in any other country in the world.
In Gentile lands, the mass of the people are too poor to be cultivated, and times of holiday, when they come, are times of either simple inaction or degrading revelry. Their mirth lacks an ideal. In Israel, plenty was diffused; and the centre of their festivities was God and the memory of His deeds on their behalf.
It is true that it was only occasionally in Israel's history that this beautiful ideal was realised. Had they remained faithful to the law, they must needs have realised the perfection of human life upon earth as it now is; and never would have ensued that desolation of their country and dispersion of their race which we see at this day.
... The "restitution of all things which God hath spoken by the mouth of all his holy prophets since the world began" includes the restitution of the feasts, for the law of which they are the most glorious features will be re-enacted in Israel's midst in the day of their return (not as the ground of their acceptance but as the rule of their action which circumcision of heart would qualify them to adopt) as saith Moses.
...A joyous and wholesome system of periodical and collective travel will again come into vogue among the populations inhabiting the happy land of promise in the day of restoration. God will be known among them, from the least to the greatest, and intercourse to them will be a joy that is not possible in the present state of things.
But the beauty of the feasts will not be confined to Israel's land.
"Many nations shall be joined unto the Lord in that day,"
and the law is to "go forth" to them with no ineffectual result: for they shall say,
"Let us go up to the house of the God of Jacob, and He shall teach us of His ways and we shall walk in His paths."
We shall therefore see the whole earth taking part in the happy life springing from the Lord's land. Plenty will be among the nations as in Israel; and with the plenty, righteousness and wisdom will blend, finding gladsome public expression at recurring periodic seasons, differing as much from the holidays of British life, as the Kingdom of God will differ from the present evil world.
The Christadelphian, June 1886
4 Then shall he that offereth his offering [korban] unto Yahweh bring a meat [ minchah]offering of a tenth deal of flour mingled with the fourth part of an hin of oil [shemen].
5 And the fourth part of an hin of wine [yayin] for a drink [nesekh] offering shalt thou prepare with the burnt [olah] offering or sacrifice [zevach], for one lamb [keves].
Bread is the symbol of strength, both natural and spiritual. Bread is also the symbol of the body of Christ - many individual grains of seed sown in the act of baptism - springing up to newness of life - gathered in the Lord's harvest - threshed to remove the chaff - ground in the mill to a smooth, fine consistency in which each seed merges with countless others to form one body.
Bread again is that one individual body which is offered for us - the bread which came down from heaven - the Purpose manifested in flesh. Flour is a certain step in the process of making bread. So we discover that the sacrificial ordinances include a chronological presentation of the Truth, an unfolding of the purpose. The seed, the sheaf, the flour, the baken bread.
Bread again is the fruit of labour; in the joint partaking of it, it is fellowship and covenant relation; it is doctrine; it is protection and security; it is the final basic necessities of life; it is the ministration of charity.
Then the oil with which the flour must be mingled. Even the idea that something must be mingled with the flour is a lesson in itself. It shows that exactly the same thing might be acceptable or not acceptable - according to that which accompanies it. Oil is a symbol of spirit. Things must be done in the right spirit. Just the bare doing is not enough. The purpose and motive must be right.
In the act of anointing we see the spirit-oil poured out upon a believer, sanctifying and consecrating him - setting him apart - devoting him to a purpose. In the lamp the spirit - oil is guidance and enlightenment and comfort and encouragement.
Mingled with the flour the spirit-oil transforms a loose, powdery mixture which a slight wind would scatter, into one homogenous mass that can be shaped to a desired form. When passed through the fire it will hold that shape and its natural heavy doughiness will be transformed into palatableness and flavour. Oil, again, is gladness and joy.
Wine, in the figures of Isaiah, is the gospel message, offered freely without price. Christ uses it in the same way, and he also employs the contrast between new and old wine to illustrate the relation of his teaching to the Law. It was a new vintage of the same thing. The time had come for the new. Wine can also be a mocker and deceiver, false as well as true. As such, it is the cup of false doctrine in the hand of the apostasy.
Again, wine is the blood shed for sin, the life obediently poured out unto death - the life is in the blood. And wine is well-being, prosperity, celebration of good. Wine is grapes trodden in wrath, bitter judgment poured out that the condemned must drink.
Bread and wine are body and soul; they are the necessities and pleasures of life; they are the physical and mental aspects of life. Wine and oil are a soothing and healing ointment. David says (Psa. 104:15) that God gives-
"Wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man's heart."
The gladdening gospel wine, the enlightening spirit oil and the strengthening bread of life.
And behind the wine is the multitudinous imagery that surrounds the vine and its branches.
"I am the true vine and ye are the branches . . . without me ye can do nothing" (Jn. 15:5).
Without him, what are we? What incentive would there be to carry on day after day in meaningless plodding toward oblivion? One long struggle, with its inevitable bitter twilight and final extinction. But the bread and the wine are here before us. Here is a point of contact with the eternal. The bread and the wine, each with the wide meaning and association which it has acquired through the long period of the Spirit's teaching and revelation.
There is a strange sense of familiarity when the mysterious figure of Melchizedek brings forth bread and wine in the presence of Abraham. In this gift of long ago by the King of Righteousness to the Father of the Faithful, all the history of God's loving purpose is condensed. The Jew today, as his fathers have done for ages, still brings forth his bread and wine at the solemn passover feast. But the veil is still over their face.
"Christ our passover is sacrificed for us" (1 Cor. 5:7).
"Take, eat, this is my body" (1 Cor. 11:24).
"This is the new covenant in my blood" (1 Cor. 11:25).
Each thread we pick up in Scripture leads us to this point. Each thread is intended to lead us to this point and fails in its purpose if we do not follow it through. Let us not read these things with a veil of blindness or habit or preoccupation upon our minds, so that we, like the Israelites, "cannot look to the end of what is signified."
Let us not permit the Law to fail in its purpose through the weakness of the flesh. The Law must lead us to Christ. He is the priest, the altar, the sacrifice, the bread, the wine, the oil. All things point to the redeeming love of him whom we have assembled to remember.
Bro Growcott - The Purpose of the Law
32 And while the children of Israel [Bnei Yisroel] were in the wilderness [midbar], they found a man that gathered sticks upon the sabbath day [Shabbos].
33 And they that found him gathering sticks brought him unto Moses [Moshe] and Aaron [Aharon], and unto all the congregation [Kol HaEdah].
34 And they put him in ward [under custody], because it was not declared what should be done to him.
35 And Yahweh said unto Moses [Moshe], The man shall be surely put to death: all the congregation [Kol HaEdah] shall stone him with stones without the camp [avanim outside the machaneh].
36 And all the congregation [Kol HaEdah] brought him without the camp [outside the machaneh], and stoned him with stones [avanim], and he died; as Yahweh commanded Moses [Moshe].
We know not what penalty, if any, was attached to its violation before the flood; but its desecration under the Mosaic constitution was attended with signal and summary vengeance...
it is clear that it was unlawful for servants in the families of Israel to light fires, cook dinners, harness horses, drive out families to the synagogues, or priests to the temple to officiate in the service of the Lord. The visiting of families on the sabbath day, the taking of excursions for health or for preaching, and conversing about worldly or family, or any kind of secular affairs, was also illegal, and punishable with death.
The law, it will be observed also, had regard to the seventh, and to no other day of the week. It was lawful to do all these things on the first or eighth day (some particular ones however excepted), but not on the seventh. On this day, however, it was "lawful to do good;" but then this good was not arbitrary.
Neither the priests nor the people were the judges of the good or evil, but the law only which defined it. "On the sabbath days the priests in the temple profaned the sabbath, and were blameless;" (Matt. 12:5), for the law enjoined them to offer "two lambs of the first year without spot as the burnt-offering of every sabbath" (Num. 28:9-10). This was a profanation of the seventh-day law, which prohibited "any work " from being done; and had not God commanded it they would have been "guilty of death." It was upon this ground that Jesus was "guiltless;" for he did the work of God on that day in healing the sick as the Father had commanded Him.
"The sabbath was made for man and not man for the sabbath therefore," said Jesus, "the Son of Man is Lord also of the sabbath day " (Mark 2:27).
It was a wise and beneficent institution. It prevented the Israelites from wearing out themselves and their dependants by incessant toil; and revived in them a weekly remembrance of the law and promises of God.
It was, however, only "a SHADOW of things to come," the substance of which is found in the things which pertain to the Anointed One of God. (Col. 2:16-17; and 14). It was a part of "the rudiments of the world" inscribed on "the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us," and which the Lord Jesus "took out of the way, nailing it to His cross."
When He lay entombed He rested from His labours, abiding in His place all the seventh day. Having ended His work, He arose on the eight day, "and was refreshed." The shadowy sabbath disappeared before the brightness of the rising of the Sun of righteousness; who, having become the accursed of the law, delivered His brethren from its sentence upon all.
Elpis Israel 1.2.