Leviticus 2, Acts Of Service Unto The Lord

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Well, here we are in the Book of Leviticus and Leviticus can sometimes be considered the killer of New Year's resolutions, because right around the beginning of the year, right at the end of last year, you know you make the the commitment, the covenant.

All right, I'm gonna read through the Bible in three years or I'm gonna read through the Bible in one year perhaps.

And you get started and you're you're working your way through.

And as you do.

You work your way through Genesis and you learn some cool things about the beginning and you see all those accounts that are just amazing and you get into the book of Exodus and there's so much that is exciting there.

The miracles of the Lord and the hand of God with the children of Israel.

But then the leader part of Exodus you start to get into the Tabernacle and.

The first time around, it's pretty cool.

All those details and everything, but then the details are repeated again, and then a third time.

Him and so Exodus.

You know you kind of start to go.

Oh man, this is a little bit tougher than I imagined.

And then you get into the book of Leviticus and Boy, the the Book of Leviticus can sure kill a New Year's resolution where it's like.

What am I reading?

Why am I reading these things and why do I need to spend time considering these things?

I've said this.

Before reading, Leviticus can be like reading a repair manual for a car that you don't own and don't want to work on.

It's like a lot of details about things that perhaps you know are not interesting or not pertinent to us.

And yet, of course, as we look at these things, the Lord has much more than that for us, and there is great depth here in the Book of Leviticus and much for us to learn of the Lord, and without getting into, you know, all the aspects of that, just considering the first few chapters of the Book of Leviticus, we get to see the offerings of the Lord, the sacrifices.

That got established for his people.

And so chapter one of Leviticus gives us the burnt offering and it has, you know, great significance and pointing to Jesus great significance to us in the idea of offering ourselves to the Lord and being completely and wholly devoted to the Lord.

Leviticus, chapter 2 that's what we'll be talking about tonight.

Contains all the details about the graynor.

Offering then Chapter 3 talks about the peace offerings, also referred to as the fellowship offering, and so that was another kind of sacrifice and animal sacrifice that God provided for his people.

And then Chapter 4 gave us, gives us the sin offering and we'll get into that over the next few days as we're reading.

Through the Bible in three years and so, the sin offering, as well as the trespass offering in Chapter 5 deal with.

Sin and different types of sin before the Lord and bringing that right relationship with God back into place through the sacrifice, and so these sacrifices are really important and powerful.

But it's also important to remember that they were always designed by the Lord to be temporary.

They're meaningful, they have great significance, but they were not meant to be the permanent solution for the issue of sin.

They were meant to be the temporary solution until the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

He's the permanent solution.

He's the permanent sin offering trespass offering and that resolves the sin issue.

For us completely.

Now, one aspect of these sacrifices that are really interesting is that the first three sacrifices are voluntary, while the last two the sin offering and the trespass offering they're required.

When you sin, you have to offer a sacrifice is the Lord's instruction to them. But at any time when the children of Israel wanted to.

Worship the Lord and spend time with God and you know have a a time of fellowship with the Lord.

They could offer any of these first three offerings at any time, and so we see these sacrifices not just as you know, the.

Important components of some very legalistic, you know system that is dead and we don't want any part of but, but we understand that these are sacrifices that God gave for a way for his people to engage with him in worship.

And so as such, it has great depth for us that we can.

Consider for ourselves as we understand what it is that the Lord is seeking from his people, and there's some symbolism here, of course, pointing to Jesus, but also some parallels to our worship of the Lord, and out ways that we can connect with him and communicate with him as well.

Pastor Thomas Constable puts it this way.

Each of these offerings reveals what is essential for ascential four or what results from a relationship between a redeemed Sinner and a holy God.

And so as you continue on in the Book of Leviticus, I would encourage you to dig a little bit deeper.

The Nuggets perhaps aren't on the surface like in other portions, but.

But there is great depth there for the things that the Lord has for you.

If you'll engage with him and hear from him in that way.

But again, we're starting out tonight here, or we're looking tonight at Leviticus Chapter 2 and this is the second of the sacrifices.

And again, it's a sacrifice and offering that is not required.

It's interesting to note that the first instructions that God gives in the book of Leviticus, regarding the sacrifices, the first instructions were not about the mandatory offerings, and you know, maybe if you or I were in charge.

We would have maybe written that a little bit differently.

Hey, let's get this straight first, you know, here's the things that are required.

No, the first three sacrifices are freewill offerings or voluntary sacrifices that could be offered by anyone in a desire to seek the Lord in to worship the Lord.

And so the green offering is an interesting offering in that it is voluntary. It's separate from the tide. The tide was a requirement that God had given to his people and that they would bring in a 1/10 of, you know, the the harvest 1/10 of what they brought in. But this was separate from that. This isn't the that I that's.

A voluntary offering of a portion of grain.

There's some different ways to think about the purpose of this green offering, and depending on you know what commentator you read or who you talk to.

You might get different ideas about the purpose of this. Many say that it expresses gratitude for God's provision that the bringing forth of grain is like saying, hey, God, you've blessed me with so much.

Green and I just want to honor that and recognize that and just say thank you for what you've done for me and providing for me.

Many would say that the grain offering expresses dedication of all labor, and it's it's saying you know all that I do is for God.

Here's a a sample piece of that.

Here's a kind of a portion of that that represents all the work that I do, and so Lord, I want to dedicate all of my lieber unto you.

Others would say that the green offering is a way to honor the Lord and to recognize that God is provided for everything, that that it's the recognition of God.

I understand you've given me everything.

All this green that I've brought in.

And it's it's from you.

It's not from me, even though I worked hard and I sweat to bring it in, right?

But but Lord, I realize this is really from you.

And so, Lord, I I want to honor you and recognize you and you're providing for me another way to look at this is that the green offering is a way to bless others with blessings that have.

Then received now as you think about all these different examples, you know expressing gratitude or dedicating your labor to the Lord, recognizing that got us provided everything blessing others I, I would say, why limit it to just one of those, you know?

Really, it's kind of all of the above and and really I think the point is it's up to the worshipper and God.

It's not specifically said, hey, when you feel this way, offer this kind of offering or when you have this kind of thought, offer this kind of offering.

It's really a freewill offering.

Hey, whenever you want to, you can bring this green offering and it could be for one of these reasons or a multitude of you know these reasons or other reasons that we haven't thought.

About that that you just want to come and have this engagement with God in this way.

Now as we consider this for ourselves today, I'm going to suggest that you consider the grain offering as acts of service, things that we do unto the Lord as an act of worship as an act of service, as a response to what he has done for us.

And there's many reasons for us to consider.

The grain offering in that way, well, one of the things that's unique about the grain offering is that there was personal labor involved.

The grounding of fine flour had to be done right, so the worshipper would ground down the flour and then some of the offerings involved cooking, and so they would involve you know they'd be cooking and preparing doing this labor ahead of time and then bringing that to the Tabernacle to sacrifice to the Lord.

And so there was this personal lever.

There is this personal investment of time and energy.

We also understand that this offering was attached to the special role of service unto the Lord, that the priests had in the Viticus Chapter 6.

It describes that the the high priest was to offer this offering daily in the morning and in the evening as an offering to the Lord.

It was connected to their service.

Unto the Lord and of course, symbolically, we could look at and understand it for tells of Jesus, the bread of life.

And you know great significance there, but also the reminder that Jesus came not to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many, and so understanding, this green offering is acts of service.

I've titled the Message Tonight, Acts of service unto the Lord.

Acts of service unto the Lord.

Now the Lord.

Is kind of put together a theme over the past several weeks and I don't plan this.

You know, I didn't put this together, but it's just I guess the way that the Lord has these passages on my heart.

Two weeks ago we looked at Exodus Chapter 29. The message was prepared to serve the Lord and the different elements that were involved.

In you know the preparing of the priest to serve the Lord, but representative us as.

You know priests of the Lord as believers in Jesus Christ were a Kingdom of priests, and so there was those steps the the being washed and changed and being forgiven.

And then the dedication unto God, and connecting to God that we saw there in Exodus chapter 29. But then last week we looked at Chapter 35 and.

Talked about doing the work of the Lord, and so there is now the time to to do the work and we talked about the importance of submitting to God, giving to the Lord willingly and serving the Lord excellently or giving our best.

Unto the Lord, and so that theme kind of continues tonight acts of service unto the Lord, and ways that we can engage with the Lord.

Four things that we'll talk about for things to understand about our service unto the Lord.

The first one is found.

Well, actually these aren't tide 2 verses necessarily.

So it's my habit to to do that.

So I might try to tie it to verses as we go through, but here's point number.

One God accepts many types of service.

The first thing I would ask us to consider this evening is the many types of service that God accepts.

Now looking at Leviticus Chapter 2.

In those verses we read we got to see it's all about a grain offering.

OK, we understand that but but the Lord highlights and illustrates different types.

Of grain offerings that could be given.

In verses one and two he talks about the offering of fine flour.

Check out verse one again.

It says when anyone offers a grain offering to the Lord, his offering shall be of fine flour, and he shall pour oil on it and put frankincense on it.

And so in this version of the green offering there was fine flour.

So it was not cooked, it was raw.

It was unprepared except for it had to be ground down because they didn't go to the grocery store and buy a bag of flour like we do.

Right, they they harvested grain and then they would grind it down until it became fine flour.

So there was that labor involved.

Perhaps of course they could, you know trade or purchase from somebody around them, but but the point is it would be this fine flour.

So like a bag of flour that you would get from the grocery store like that and and this fine flour.

Would be brought as a sacrifice to the Lord along with some oil and frankincense.

But that was the first kind of grain offering God goes on to give some other examples.

There's the example in verse four of a grain offering that was baked in an oven, and so this is a baked bread of some sort, and so the flour would be mixed with oil.

Verse four says if you bring.

As an offering, a grain offering baked in the oven, it shall be unleavened cakes of fine flour mixed with oil or unleavened wafers anointed with oil.

And so there would be a recipe, right?

There would be this mixture of flour and oil and they would be mixed together, cooked in a certain way within the oven.

And then the finished product would be pulled out of the oven, brought to the Tabernacle and offered to the Lord as a sacrifice.

But then he gives the example of.

The grain offering that's baked in a pan and verse five and six.

If your offering is a grain offering baked in a pan, it shall be a fine flour, unleavened mixed with oil.

You shall break it in pieces.

Pour oil on it as a grain offering so.

There's a green offering that's baked in an oven.

There's a green offering that's baked in a pan.

I always wonder, exactly, you know what different types of breads you guys know me.

I'm not good in the kitchen, so perhaps you know someone will educate me later on.

You know what?

Uh, green baked in the oven and green baked in a pan?

The differences are but.

But God makes the distinction here.

There's different kinds of preparations, different kinds of cooking methods.

Then in verse seven another kind of baking.

It's this time in a in a covered pan and many consider this to be like deep frying and so verse 7.

If you're offering as a grain offering baked with a covered pan, it shall be made of fine flour.

With oil, so all of these have the same components, but they're mixed different ways.

There's perhaps different levels of the ingredients, different measurements of the ingredients, and they're prepared differently, so there the end result is different.

But all of them can be brought before the Lord as a sacrifice, and then the final one is the roasted green in verses 14 through 16.

He talks about the offering of firstfruits.

And the offering of Firstfruits was a little bit separate than than the rest of these, that we're talking about, because it was taking that first harvest from the whole field, and so just taking a small portion of it.

And then bringing that before the Lord as an offering saying thank you God in advance for the rest of the harvest that you have prepared for us.

And so this would be tide to the the beginning of the the harvesting of their crops.

And so this grain offering would be prepared a little bit differently.

It would be roasted.

And so you have roasted green.

You have baked in a pan, baked in the oven, baked in a covered pan, fine flour.

All of these different ways to prepare.

There, this grain offering, and so it's you know, on the surface, pretty simple ingredients that are considered here that are instructed in and.

And yet there's great variety.

In the preparations and the ways that God invites people to come and offer this sacrifice, I find it interesting that God.

Allowed so many variations he could have just said all of it.

Just be fine flour or here's a recipe.

Everybody followed this recipe right?

He could have given that kind of instruction, but but he left it open and so there's a little bit of variety here and and I would suggest more than just a little bit.

I mean, there's these.

Five types, but even within these different types.

Well, you could.

Imagine and understand there could be great variety in the midst of them.

Each of these are, you know, unique, but also a little bit similar.

But you know you can have different kinds of bread and different mixtures that come with different types of bread.

And I do apologize, I I forgot to mention it in advance.

This message is not gluten free.

It's all about the.

The the wheats and the barley and those things.

And so I apologize if that makes you crave things that you're not supposed to crave.

But but there's different kinds of bread.

There's different kinds of cake.

The website tasteatlas.com.

Comes up with 100 most popular cakes around the world, so again in each of these there could be great variety, right, different ways. Different family recipes for baking these different goods, crackers, cakes.

Many people understand the the baked in a covered pan.

The the end result of that would be a lot like.

A doughnut, and so you can have Donuts, cakes, breads, crackers, all of this great variety in what God would allow as an offering a sacrifice there at the Tabernacle.

And I would suggest you that God allowed so many variations he allowed so much flexibility because he wanted people to have the freedom to relate to him in various ways for him to move upon their hearts and speak to them in different ways, for for them to be creative and express themselves in various ways.

And you know.

Try out new things and and seek to honor the Lord in in different ways as they desired to worship the Lord.

And so again, the point is that God accepts many types of service.

When it comes to.

Dealing with the issue of sin, there's not this variety.

There is one way, right?

Jesus said, I am the way, the truth, and the life.

No one comes to the father except through me, and so the sin sacrificed the trespass sacrifice, though those represent a very specific mode of relating to God.

There's only one way.

It's very limited.

It's really just pointing at Jesus Christ.

He is the way, the truth, and the life.

But as we consider the grain offering, it's a little bit different as we think about it in regards to serving the Lord.

It's appropriate to understand that God accepts a great variety of service, and I think this is really important for us to consider, because sometimes we get in our mind the idea of serving the Lord and and we just have like one or two examples of that in our mind and and those are the only ways to serve the Lord in our minds.

You know, not necessarily intentionally.

But we kind of get stuck in these ideas.

These modes of thinking that you know this is serving the Lord.

This is serving the Lord and and those are the only ways to serve.

The Lord, and so as we think about serving the Lord today and acts of service unto the Lord I, I would encourage you to think outside the box, or if you would think outside the church.

Do you want to do something for the Lord?

Do you want to serve the Lord in some capacity?

There is of course lots of opportunities and ways to serve the Lord within the context of a church, but I I don't want to focus so much on that because again, it's many times in our mind the automatic connection and and I would ask you instead.

Here, what about outside the church?

Think about this Hebrews chapter 13, verse 15 and 16, says therefore by him, that is, Jesus let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God.

That is, the fruits of our lips giving thanks to his name, but do not forget to do good and to share.

For with such sacrifices, God is well pleased.

Here the author of Hebrews talks about the sacrifice of praise to God, and then he elaborates further and he says, here's what that means.

Our sacrifice of praise to God is not a green offering.

It's not an animal sacrifice, but it's the fruit of our lips.

It's the things that we say, the words that we use and the gratitude.

That we express.

To the Lord, and so there is a great opportunity for us to serve the Lord by expressing our gratitude.

Our thanks by verbalizing our thankfulness to God and again I would encourage you to consider that not just in the context of the Church, but.

But in your workplace, giving thanks to his.

Name within your home giving thanks to the name of the Lord that that you would out loud, verbalize and say thank you, Lord.

And as you know, perhaps you're being rewarded or praised for something, and in some arena and and and to give thanks to God in that way, it's a sacrifice of praise unto the Lord.

It's a way to.

To serve the Lord or an act of service unto the Lord.

But then he goes on to say, and don't forget to do good and to share.

So we we can understand the acts of service unto the Lord are not just limited to you know those specific church things that happen on stage or in those you know, really defined categories that we think of, but doing good.

What does that include?

Well, it includes all kinds of good things it includes.

You know more things than we could consider it tonight.

Share Share what well, whatever is needed whatever you want to share.

Whatever you know someone around you might benefit from or be blessed from that that there is a sacrifice that you can give unto the Lord by doing good all kinds of good in all kinds of ways, in all kinds of circumstances, in all kinds of situations.

And sharing all kinds of things to all kinds of people.

Or you know, whatever the the need may be, that there is a way for us to serve the Lord to to perform acts of service unto the Lord, that that.

Is really unlimited in its variety and so think outside the church you want to do something for the Lord.

Think outside the Church of course.

Think inside the church as well.

Last week I think it was.

We looked at the Tabernacle and how there was the different people involved and so you had, you know, people spinning yarn.

And they were skilled at it, and they were good at it, and and so there was that kind of service.

And that was just as much service unto the Lord as you know.

The high priestly ministry.

There was the the Goldsmiths and you know those who could work with wood and work with the different metals and the different materials of the Tabernacle.

And so there was all these, you know, different kinds of trades that were involved and and similarly inside the church there is the need for that.

That kind of service unto the Lord.

As well in the New Testament, the picture that's given to us for the church is the picture of a body.

Which illustrates a couple important things.

Number one, it illustrates the unity that we have that we are all connected together, that we're bound together, that we need one another that we rely upon each other and you know we are one in Christ and and and it pictures that greatly.

But it also pictures for us the great.

Piety that there's the hand that does some things, the foot that does something, the eye that does something, the ear that does something that there's all of these different ways of fulfilling the roles that are necessary within the body of Christ.

Some of those are within the context of church, and some of those are outside of this property and.

Outside of this building, but but still fulfilling that role with unity and great variety.

So God accepts many types of service, very practical things.

I was thinking about acts Chapter 9.

I remember when Peter heals a woman named Dorcas and and as he was going to her, all of these people came around and and showed him the tunics and garments which.

She had made for them, and so she was involved in acts of service to the people around her, particularly as a seamstress, it seems, and she was able to make these garments and bless people with these things.

It's acts of service unto the Lord, and God accepts that.

He accepts many different things and so maybe it's a very, you know, practical skill.

Maybe it's something that you're able to do or that you enjoy doing, or that is, you know, kind of a a side thing for you.

A hobby for you, but but God accepts those things that we do unto him and for him again.

The purpose of the grain.

Offering expressing gratitude for God's provision and so maybe there's some things that that you can do that would just say thank you, Lord, I just want to do this because I want to thank you for providing for me and I. I'm just so grateful for all that you've.

Or maybe there's the desire in you to express a dedication unto the Lord.

A dedication of all your labor, and so you're able to then do something, maybe share something, or do some good, or serve in some capacity and and you in your heart you're saying, look, I'm doing this thing, it's very practical.

It doesn't seem to be religious or spiritual.

At all, but what I'm doing this for you and what I'm saying with this that you know all of my labor is like this.

All of my labor is for you and for your purposes.

Perhaps you desire to recognize that God has provided everything for you, and so you just want to give back in some way, and so there's ways to give back and and God will show you those ways.

Perhaps you know, would stirred up on your heart just a need to bless others with the blessings that you have received to pass along those things from the Lord and so.

Look for those opportunities God accepts many types of service this great variety to how you can serve the Lord.

Well, moving on to the second thing for us to consider tonight and that is that God accepts all levels of service.

Similar to the different types of service, I would ask you to consider the different levels of service.

Check out verse 2 again, it's.

'cause he shall bring it to Aaron sons, the priests, one of whom shall take from it his hand full of fine flour with oil, with all the frankincense, and the priest shall burn it as a memorial on the altar and offering made by fire a sweet aroma to the Lord.

Here the Lord gives the description for how this offering is to be handled, and this specific instance is the fine flour.

This is the raw uncooked flour.

It's been ground, but but it's not been prepared in any way.

It's just a bag of flour.

With some oil and frankincense.

And so this is to be offered to the Lord in this way.

And it's interesting to consider that because it's such a simple gift in many ways.

And yet, the end of the verse.

There it says it's an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the Lord.

It it's not elaborate, it's not fancy, it's not spectacular.

It's a bag of flour.

And yet God accepts it as a sweet aroma to him.

You know, sometimes we get in our mind a distorted view of our service.

Sometimes our perspective is skewed and and evaluating our own service under the Lord can be, you know, quite challenging because we sometimes are very happy with our service under the Lord when we shouldn't be.

And sometimes we're unhappy with our service under the Lord when we really should be that that we don't have the best.

Perspective when it comes to it.

Awaiting our service, but here's what the Bible says about this offering this very simple method of this green offering.

God says it's a sweet aroma to him.

Because what really matters to the Lord is the heart.

What really matters to the Lord is the motive, the intention, and the desires, not necessarily the execution, not necessarily.

You know the the way that it could be all fancy or the the way that it could be?

But but what God cares about most is the heart, what's going on within in regards to that offering, and if the heart is right with the Lord.

If the heart is, you know, expressing these things and offering this sacrifice sense of the Lord, that then that's what matters most.

Again, thinking about the different types of grade offerings, the fine flower that it seems on the surface right is the easiest sacrifice to make.

To bake it in the oven, that's going to involve some time.

To bake it in a pan that's gonna involve some time, maybe some different techniques, different skill levels, different amounts of Labor that might be involved, different expenses that might be involved when you have you know, baked in a covered pan, you know now you're maybe having more oil and and so there's you know different components or different pieces, and so all of these.

Are very similar but but each of them can.

We involve different techniques, different skill levels, different amounts of Labor, different expenses.

As you look at these things, we can really highlight fine flower as.

Well, the simplest of the sacrifices that are listed here and and the offering of fine flower is listed later on in Leviticus Chapter 5, as really an indication of great poverty.

Leviticus Chapter 5 is God is addressing the trespass offering.

You know he speaks about the lamb that is to be offered to atone for the trespass that the worshipper has committed.

Now God provides though in Leviticus Chapter 5 a little bit of a clause.

For those who are in need, those who are in poverty, hey, you can't afford a lamb.

OK, you can offer two turtledoves, so there's a substitute.

Then you know if you can't afford a lamb here, here's an alternate way you can still atone for your sin.

You can still become right with God hears.

Plan B2 turtledoves

Oh, but you can't afford two turtledoves.

Well, here's plan C.

You can still offer fine flower.

It's amazing how God makes sure that everybody is is able to bring this sacrifice to the Lord.

It it's the the sacrifice that if you don't have anything else.

Even you know at the the lowest level of poverty, you can bring a little bit of flour to the Lord and atone for your trespass offering in that way.

And so now that's you know, the trespass offering is Chapter 5.

This is chapter 2.

This is the grain offering, but but the point is this offering of fine flour was not elaborate, was not expensive and.

And was recognized by the Lord.

As you know something that anybody could bring to the Lord.

Which isn't that amazing isn't that important to consume.

Sure that that God invites us to serve him and he gives opportunity for all levels of service from the very lowest level.

Whatever you might consider that to be, I'm not, you know, casting judgments upon anybody service, but but you know, whatever level of service that you think you have or.

Capability that you have.

God accepts that and and different types of grain offerings involve different types of you know engagement and preparation, but but the very simplest one.

God says that that also it's a sweet aroma to me.

This idea reminded me of Luke Chapter 21, where Jesus is with his disciples, observing people giving at the temple and there was this old woman, this widow that was poor and she put in two mights just two couple coins and.

Jesus nudges his disciples and says check this out.

She just put in those two little.

Coins, but she gave more than everybody.

Because they gave out of their abundance, but she gave out of her poverty.

She gave unto the Lord.

A bag of flour.

And the Lord accepted that it's a sweet aroma.

Again, 'cause what God is concerned about most is the heart.

Listen, the point I'm trying to make here is that the simplest ways of serving the Lord are accepted by God.

The things that perhaps we would despise or not think a lot about or not think are so great.

Those things the Lord accepts.

And they're pleasing to him.

They're valid ways, even if they're simple to serve the Lord.

And to honor him.

Commentator RK Harrison says even the poorest of persons could offer a homemade flat cake or wafer of bread as he sacrificed to God and come to know him more fully in the breaking of bread.

In the process of, you know cooking this like I'm just going to make a cake for the Lord.

And at that time baking the cake and just thinking about the Lord and preparing that to bring as a sacrifice.

At that time it was all involved in this offering.

This sacrifice and.

God accepts that.

And so anybody has opportunity.

Everybody has opportunity to serve the Lord and to how have it be acceptable to God and pleasing to him and something that he treasures and honors.

When I think about fine flower in this type of way as a service unto the Lord, honestly, I think about when I am called to lead worship.

Now whenever I lead worship I I like to say in worship leaders don't like for me to say this that much, but I usually say that you know, hey, I lead worship only when.

God tells me I have to or I can't be saved right?

Like because it's not my gifting and I could do it OK.

But you know what?

It's good for me and so many times the Lord calls me to offer up a green offering.

But it's just an offering of fine flour.

It's not fancy, you know, there's not great recipe.

If there's nothing you know real special about it.

It's a simple offering to the Lord.

No other people, and I'm not going to call you out by name, but some of you man you can.

You can prepare a gourmet feast of worship before the Lord.

And it's a great blessing to be part of that, right?

It's always an amazing time to to experience those times of worship that are just those huge, elaborate feasts.

You know that that baked in the oven or baked in the pan or baked in the covered pan.

Types of worship and.

Then there's also the times that are just.

It's just simple, it's just a bag of flour.

Now, regardless of what you or I may think about the different types and times of worship.

For the Lord.

Either one is acceptable.

It's a pleasing aroma to him.

God accepts all levels of service.

And so maybe you know your level in some capacity and some arena is, you know, not amazing and people don't like bow down when you walk by.

As a result, well, that's OK there.

There is still the opportunity.

It doesn't have to be out of this world.

You can serve the Lord in the simplest ways.

Bring a bag of flour to the Lord to honor him.

He accepts all levels of service, other kinds of baking.

It takes hours and hours.

When Kim is making macarons.

It's typically several days of baking, right?

And and so there's all this time there's this intricate process that's involved and and it fine flour is involved, right?

Not not wheat flour, almond flour, but it's this big process right?

It's very elaborate.

That kind of offering is acceptable to the Lord.

As well.

Some types of service involve.

Things that are very elaborate.

Some types of service under the Lord involved massive amounts of time and energy.

I I was thinking about it this way.

I want to bake a cake.

I woke up this morning saying I want to bake a cake and I never want to cook and I'm not actually talking about cooking right, but but in regards to teaching the scriptures.

Many times I feel like I'm all I'm offering is just a bag of fine flour because my time is so much more limited than it used to be.

And oh man, it was used to be so you know, different where I could have like 20 hours to spend preparing a message.

And it was like you know, I'm feasting.

I don't know if the people you know on the receiving end feast differently.

One way or the other, but but it was a feast for me for sure.

I want to bake a cake, you know, really, invest in and spend some time investing in a message to Sharon to bring forth the word in that way.

Perhaps the Lord is stirring up something like that in you.

Maybe the words put on your heart, something simple and it's worth it.

And that's the point.

I want to make that that it's worth it.

The things that we would look down upon.

You know your neighbor might look at your little bag of flour that you're bringing to the Lord and go like why even bother bringing that to the Lord.

It's just a little bag of you didn't even cook it like you didn't even do anything to it.

It's just a bag.

Flower, it's like yeah, but I just want to give it to the Lord.

The Lord sees it different than you or I see it.

He accepts it.

It's a sweet aroma to him.

Again, verse two, he shall bring it to air and sons.

This is the bag of flour, the priests, one of whom shall take from it his hand full of fine flour with oil, and all the frankincense and the priest shall burn it as a memorial on the altar and offering made by fire a sweet aroma to the Lord.

The priest would take a portion of this bag of flour.

And would burn that on the altar.

And the fact that it was burned on the altar meant that it was accepted by God.

The commentator Jay Jellinek says the memorial portion that was burned by the priests on the altar showed the worshipper that God had accepted his offering.

God accepts the offering of those who are in fellowship with him.

God accepts all levels of service.

Do you want to do something for the Lord?

Again, this is a voluntary offering.

This is not a requirement.

You don't have to do something for the Lord to be saved.

The Sin offerings faith in Jesus Christ.

Those are his completed work.

It's required.

You must believe in Jesus.

But now that you believe in Jesus, do you want to do something for the Lord?

God accepts all levels of service.

And you can do simple things.

You can do very elaborate things.

Whatever is on your heart to do, it's really up to you and between you and the Lord as far as your level of service and and what you do and what you commit unto the Lord.

Matthew Chapter 1041 and 42 Jesus talks about he receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet's reward.

He receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man, shall receive a righteous man reward, and whoever gives one of these little ones only a cup of cold water in the name of a disciple.

Assuredly, I say to you, he shall by no means lose his reward.

Jesus says, here, let me give you some simple examples.

Maybe you're not the Prophet, and maybe you're not.

You know, the missionary.

Going out, but can you receive a missionary?

Can you host them?

Or maybe can you support them?

And it's a simple act of service, but in doing so you are serving the word.

It's acceptable to the Lord, then you might think, well, it would be so much better if I could go, or if I could do something.

Supporting providing for hosting.

Those are also ways to serve the Lord Jesus even goes on to say hey, even just giving a cup of cold water in the name of the Lord.

That's an act of service.

It's it's acceptable.

It's pleasing to the Lord outside of church.

There is many opportunities.

To give.

A cup of cold water.

Inside the church there's many opportunities.

To give a cup of cold water, there's opportunities for great, elaborate, you know, services that involve all kinds of things to sure no problem.

That's what's on your heart, if that's what the lid stirred up.

Great serve the Lord and do those things.

But also don't despise the days of small things and the little things that the Lord puts upon a heart that the the thing that matters to God is the heart, the motive, they intention, the desire.

He accepts all levels of service.

Well thirdly, the third thing to consider about our acts of service unto the Lord tonight is that acts of service bless other people.

And this really isn't a surprise.

But it is important to consider.

Again, in verse two it says he shall bring it to Aaron sons, the priests, one of whom shall take from it his hand full of fine flour with oil, with all the frankincense, and the priest shall burn it as a memorial on the altar and offering made by fire a sweet aroma to the Lord.

Verse 3 the rest of the grain offering shall be errands.

And his sons.

It is most holy of offerings.

To the Lord made by fire.

Notice what it says there.

The bag of flour that you bring.

The priests would take a handful of it, burn that on the altar.

What happens to the rest?

The rest provides for the priest?

The rest is given to the priest and his sons.

To provide for their needs and care for them.

And so here you are as a worshipper.

And you're saying, I just want to.

Thank the Lord for what he's done for me.

I just want to honor the Lord for his provision.

For me, I just want to, you know, bless others for for the ways that God has blessed me.

And so you bring your bag of flour.

And you offer it to the Lord, and God accepts it.

It's a pleasing aroma to him.

It is honored by the Lord and.

The priests and his sons are blessed and ministered to as well.

As we look at all these sacrifices, of course we understand God doesn't need anything from us.

That's not a big surprise.

Sacrifices were not a means of feeding God right.

These animals sacrificed on the altar.

God didn't benefit from them in some type of physical way.

The sacrifices are all about relationship with God.

And and yet at the same time, God built into the sacrificial system the provision.

For people serving.

God builds into the system.

The blessing of others and the blessing of those who serve.

He built.

Into our relationship with him ministering to one another.

I've shared this many times over the years that God has designed us to be a body.

We are intertwined.

We are dependent upon one another.

God has designed us so that.

Well, we cannot be all that God wants us to be.

Without the people that God has placed around us.

We cannot experience the the fullest, the fullness of what God has for us without our connection to the body of Christ, we cannot really be whole without the people that God is attached to us.

And those are the ones that are your favorite people.

And also the people that maybe you're not so fond of and excited about.

But at the same time God has attached us together and it's it's part of our relationship with him are ministering to one another and learning to walk together with the Lord.

God has built relationship with him.

With a component of ministering to one another, the apostle John and 1st John makes that clear that there is this connection to loving God and loving your brother.

Loving one another is a part of loving God and if you love God, you love one another.

If you don't love one another, you don't love God.

If you don't love God, you don't love one another right like it.

It's they're permanently attached to each other.

And so acts of service bless other people.

It's acts of service unto the Lord.

But the result benefits.

The people around us.

Numbers Chapter 18 God goes into a little bit more detail about this with the Levitical priests and, well, the Levites who were serving.

He talks about the sacrifices in verse 19, all the heave offerings of the holy Things, that part of the the the different sacrifices that were offered included a.

Heave offering he says the levite's I've given that to you and your son.

And daughters as an ordinance forever.

It is a covenant of salt forever before the Lord with you and your descendants with you.

This is yours. This belongs to you. I'm providing for you guys through the sacrificial system. God tells the Levite's or God tells the priest really, and then the tide. He also addresses in numbers. Chapter 18.

He says I've given the children of Levi all the tides in Israel as an inheritance in return for the work which they perform, the work of the Tabernacle of meeting, and so God built into this Levitical system, this providing for the levite's the priests, those who serve and and so.

People around us as we.

Bring forth acts of service unto the Lord.

Understand it's not, you know, it's just us and the Lord in the closet.

You know that we do this, but it's acts of service to other people.

We're blessing them, but it's unto the Lord.

It's an offering to him, a sacrifice that is pleasing to him.

We see this again in verse 9 and 10 here in Leviticus Chapter 2 it says the pre soltec.

From the grain offering a memorial portion, burn it on the altar.

It is an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the Lord and what is left of the grain offering shall be errands and his sons.

It is most holy of the offerings to the Lord made by fire.

So you bring your, you know dozen Donuts to the priest.

You offer one he offers one on the altar and the rest him and his sons get to enjoy.

He bring, you know, akik before there's a portion that's taken out.

You bring bread.

Whatever you know the the green offering that was being offered.

It was also providing for the priests and his sons.

Acts of service bless other people.

Again, it's for the Lord.

But the visible benefactors.

Are the people that got his place around us?

Would you like to do something for the Lord?

Again, it it doesn't have to be some like elaborate mystical, you know, outlandish thing.

It can be a very simple act of service.

To someone around you.

Blessing someone else in the name of the Lord.

The grain offering, again, expressing gratitude for God's provision, dedicating all of your labor to the Lord. Recognizing that God provided everything and blessing others with the blessings that we have received.

Do you want to do something for the Lord or there's so many opportunities?

Again, think outside the church, then go outside.

The box.

Matthew Chapter 25, verse 40. Jesus says.

The King will answer and say to them, assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to the least of these my brethren.

You did it to me.

It's that portion where the Lord is saying thank you for visiting me.

When I was imprisoned.

Thank you for clothing me when I was naked.

Thank you for feeding me when I was hungry and the servants of the Lord said, when did we do that?

And the Lord says, when you did it to all of those who are in need around you, you did it unto me.

People receive it, it's benefiting the people around you.

But it's an active service unto the Lord.

Again in Hebrews chapter 13.

Said do not forget to do good and to share.

Don't forget to do good and to share.

To minister to people around you.

Think outside the church.

Think inside the church now, just to be clear, I'm not asking you to give me money, right?

This is not an elaborate ploy to get you to send in money to provide for me. Listen, I would say if if something's on your heart in that regard, think about. There's so many people who serve here. Sacrificially aside from me.

Maybe bake him some cookies.

Bring him some Donuts.

Maybe there's a way that you know the Lord would stir up on your heart.

Something that you have something that you can do a way for you to just bless people you know the the set of crew that comes faithfully every Sunday as we're outside right now.

And you know, doing all of that labor, setting up, breaking down.

The youth ministry man so faithful in ministering to the junior high and high schoolers, and sacrificially to a great degree.

The Children Ministry, the worship ministry.

You know there's there's so many who serve.

The Lord sacrificially.

There's a lot of opportunity.

For you to just bless someone who serves the Lord, or bless someone who serves in perhaps a capacity that you benefit from that.

That was the idea of the priest there, right that the children Ministry teachers benefit you greatly by ministering to your children, and so maybe think about maybe the Lord would stir up a something that you can do something simple.

Perhaps too.

Just bless them and and you're serving the Lord.

He accepts that it's a pleasing aroma to him, but it also blesses other people.

Galatians chapter 6 verse 10.

Paul tells us, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.

Notice there's both sides.

The household of faith within the church.

But to all outside the church, let's do good.

Let's look for opportunity to serve the Lord.

3rd, by ministering to people around us.

Well, the final point to consider for tonight in looking at the grain offering and the acts of service unto the Lord, the Acts of service our most holy acts of service our most holy.

Even though all the things that we're talking about, you know as we look at the Third Point, the access service bless other people even though people are blessed by the service, it is for the Lord and as far as the Lord is concerned, it is most holy check out verse.

And the rest of the green offering shall be errands and his sons.

It is most holy of the offerings to the Lord made by fire.

Of all the sacrifices in chapters one through 5.

The birds offering the sin offering the peace, offering the trespass offering.

Which one of those is most holy?

God says none of them.

The grain offering.

That's the one that's most holy.

What like I would have thought that sin offering or the trespass offering or the burnt offering like these are, you know, so much bigger so much you know more important so much they they have so much more meaning.

God says no, it's the grain offering that bag of flour that's the most holy offering unto the Lord.

Like wow, that's pretty incredible.

What the Lord is saying here.

Verse 10.

Again he says it.

What is left of the grain offering shall be Aaron and his sons.

It is most holy of the offerings to the Lord made by fire.

This is the most holy offering.

The bag of flour.

The box of Donuts.

The cake baked for the Lord.

Now in this gut is not trying to say that it's you know the ultimate beyond all the other sacrifices.

I would suggest he's putting on the same level as the other sacrifices.

Leviticus Chapter 6 will see that he he refers to the green offering.

He says it's most holy, like the sin offering in the trespass.

Frank, what the Lord is doing here is saying, look it looks insignificant.

It looks like it's not that important, but it's just as important in my perspective as the sin offering and the trespass offering.

And so again, your neighbor might see your bag of flower that you're offering and not think much of it, but God doesn't see it that way.

He says that is most holy wow, that is.

Precious that is treasured.

That is a valuable offering to the Lord.

Your service on full Lord is most holy.

God accepts it, God values it, God treasures it got.

Honors it.

Even if it's just.

The kind of service that relates to fine flower.

Your service is most holy.

Now with the service being most holy, there is some requirements, some required ingredient ingredients.

The ingredients we find throughout the chapter oil.

Oil was required for all of these great offerings, which of course automatically connects in our minds to the empowering of the Holy Spirit.

The filling of the Holy Spirit.

All of our acts of service unto the Lord.

We we need to be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Do nothing on our own strength.

But be filled with be led by the Holy Spirit that needs to be a component of our service.

Unto the Lord incense that that's part of what makes it a sweet aroma to the Lord.

This incense that would be included.

Now, there's different ways you could think about that, but the simple one to consider is look you have a sour attitude.

God says no.

Thank you.

I don't want that you have a sour attitude.

You have a bad attitude about, well, I'm doing it for the Lord, you know.

Well then just keep it.

Don't do it for the Lord.

Then if your attitude is like that because it's not with incense, it's not a sweet aroma.

It's not a pleasant thing.

Thing and then salt was included as a required ingredient ingredient and salt is required for all of the offerings the Lord says.

Even in the Millennium we see the salt being added to the offering in Ezekiel Chapter 43, salt speaks about.

That purity or preservation, there's many mentions of a salt covenant in the scriptures which speaks of how long it lasts and how enduring it is.

And so this service unto the Lord is meant to be something that is done in purity, something that is done.

You know, that lasts a long time that has.

Great flavor that's sweet.

Smells wonderful and is filled with the Holy Spirit.

But being holy also includes some forbidden ingredients.

God says it cannot contain 11 or honey and we know leaven is often pictured as a, uh, a picture of sin throughout the scriptures and so that's clear.

Honey is a little bit different.

Different people interpret that a little bit different ways.

Here's what Warren Brisby says about it.

Note that God never want Slevin.

A picture of sin or honey man glory and not gods.

But he does want salt, which speaks of purity and frankincense.

Would just praise to God.

What a privilege it is to build a Christian life that brings glory to God.

We have the opportunity.

Because acts of service are most holy we have, we have the opportunity.

To serve the Lord in ways that he values that he treasures that he honors greatly, far greater than we do our neighbors do.

The Lord says, oh, that's pleasing to me.

It's most holy, it's set apart.

That is something to be valued.

And so this evening I didn't like to encourage you in acts of service unto the Lord.

Do you want to do something for the Lord?

There is so much opportunity.

Don't don't think about only the big things or only the elaborate things or things that you know.

Maybe you could never do or or the things that you know.

Maybe you'll do one day, but.

I would encourage you to just take a look around.

Maybe there's a bag of flower that you can offer.

God accepts many types of service.

And many different levels wherever we're at.

He accepts it.

It's worthwhile.

It's worth doing for him in honor of him, in recognition of who he is.

And in gratitude for what he has done.

Other people will be blessed as you serve the Lord, and the Lord will honor it greatly.

It is most holy when you serve him.

I want to finish up with one last scripture.

It's Ephesians chapter 2 verse 10.

Where Paul tells us that we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for Good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

And I'd like to consider this verse as we close because you know, it's important to remember that it's not like it's really up to us to generate opportunities to serve.

The Lord, it's not like it's up to us to invent or come up with or create opportunities.

God has already done that work and so the real task here is to be close to the Lord to be seeking him for those opportunities.

He's the one who set it up.

He prepared them beforehand, it says.

We're created for those good works for those acts of service that are most holy in a blessing and and God accepts them and their sweet aroma to him.

He's already got them prepared.

He's got them lined up.

So that we should walk in them.

And so the important thing for us is to walk with him.

So that we could walk in those things that he has prepared for us.

Let's pray, but I pray that you would help us to stay close to you, to hear your voice, to draw near to you, and to be filled with your Holy Spirit, Lord, that we might see those many doors that you've opened those many occasions and opportunities to serve you.

By ministering to people around us God, I pray that you would help us to honor you to have hearts and minds that that are appropriate.

Lord, as we come to you as we do things for people around us with a good attitude, Lord me the things that we do.

In your name.

Be a sweet aroma to you.

Lord, we do recognize how much you bless us, how much you do in our lives, and we want to give back to you.

And so Lord, would you show us those opportunities that you've prepared that you've provided?

Lord, that we might represent you, that we might honor you, that we might serve you.

As a sweet sacrifice unto you, we pray this in Jesus name.