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February 29, Day #60 – One Thing You Lack

Today we come to Leviticus 2-3. Yesterday, we reflected upon the burnt offering; today – in chapter 2 - we see the grain offering which typifies Christ as the Bread of life and the perfect sinless Man, Who, like bread - fills and sustains us (cf., Psalm 16:11). Then, in Leviticus chapter 3, we see the peace offering (also called the fellowship offering) which pictures Christ as the sacrifice Who establishes, enables, and restores our peace with God. This chapter relates to Psalm 85:8-10, where we read, “He promises peace to His people, His saints … love and faithfulness meet together; righteousness and peace kiss each other.” The grain offering was to be made of fine flour, oil, and incense – a blend that portrays the Son and the Spirit working together to produce a fragrant aroma in the life of the believer. The grain offering could consist of cakes made on a griddle, baked in an oven, or cooked in a pan, or crushed heads of new grain roasted in a fire. Yeast and honey – ingredients that work primarily by inherent fermentation to have a degenerating effect – were not to be used in this offering. Leviticus 3 is reminiscent of Luke’s gospel, and it presents the peace (or fellowship) offering. This offering could be a male or a female animal – without defect – a lamb or a goat from the herd or the flock. Fellowship is not limited by gender; God establishes this truth in the peace offering. The animal must not be defective – a picture of Christ’s sinless humanity and sacrifice. The blood was poured out and the fat burned. The chapter ends with the prohibition, “You must not eat any fat or any blood.” Thus far, we have seen some of the complexities of the Levitical system, and we wonder, “Why did God require so many detailed specifics for a mere offering or sacrifice?” Therein lies one major question that summarizes the purpose for the entire book of Leviticus: Will the people obey it? This explains why people avoid the book of Leviticus – too convicting!

In Psalm 27:1-6, David says that we find “light, salvation, and strength in the LORD” (verse 1). God is our “stronghold” (verse 2). We can be confident, David says, that “though an army besiege me – though war break out against me,” with the LORD as our stronghold, they all “will stumble and fall” (verse 2). Consider this question: If you could ask one thing of the Lord, what would you request? The Bible contains five “one-thing” statements (Psalm 27:4; Mark 10:21; Luke 10:42; John 9:25; and Philippians 3:13). Here, David asks “one thing” of the LORD – “to dwell in the house of the LORD all the days” of his life (verse 4). Why? “To gaze upon the beauty of the LORD” (verse 4). Would you ask for that? His “beauty” is worth forsaking everything.

In Mark 10:1-33, Jesus addresses three topics we have seen earlier in Matthew’s gospel. Here, we see again His teaching on divorce, encouraging little children to come to Him, and the rich young man who desired eternal life – where we see the second “one thing” statement of Scripture (cf., Mark 10:21). The rich young man lacked “one thing” (verse 21), and he is prototypical of us all – without Christ, we all lack the “one thing” we need the most. These teachings serve the purpose of preparing people for the message of the gospel of grace as far superior to the impossibilities of the Old Testament Law. Jesus said, “It was because your hearts were hard that Moses wrote you this law” (verse 5). In this section, we see a lot of hardness – “hard hearts” (verse 5); hardness toward children by “hindering them” from coming to Christ (verse 14); and “hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God” (verse 25). Jesus is that beauty of God that David longed to gaze upon – and upon Whom we can gaze forever. Such beauty can soften all that hardness.

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