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Gospel in Leviticus? Chapter 3
The Peace-Offering

Our faith and trust in Jesus is a wonderful thing of gladness and joy . . . Our Salvation depends completely on Jesus’ Precious Blood of Atonement . . . True Peace demands a full surrender of ourself first . . . We must consider Jesus to be the Best Thing that has ever happened to us . . . He is the TRUE Christian's ground for Joy . . . Discussing Feasts on Sacred Food . . . We are the subjects of Jesus’ rejoicing.

We now see another kind of offering, different from either of those which we have so far considered. It, like the first, is of a bloody nature, but still has a distinctive side of its own.
In the meat offering, only a bullock, or a lamb, or a dove, and only the male could be taken. In this peace offering, the offering might be a bullock, or a sheep, or a goat, and could be either male or female, the ONLY stipulation was that it was without blemish. All bloody sacrifices always represent Christ, in His character of being our PERFECT Redeemer. The reason for the allowed difference in the offering here, is that this class of offerings looks more upon the reception, results and transmission of Christ's Sacrifice, rather than upon the precise manner of it. The holocaust (burnt offering) is the picture of the Saviour, as the Propitiation for sin. This is especially a picture of Jesus’ offering which benefit and conveys to those who believe.
The meat offerings of the first chapter were holocausts; meaning they were to be burned entirely upon the altar. But it is not so with peace-offerings. The only parts of these to be burned, were the suet pertaining to the inwards, the two kidneys with their fat, the "caul" (membrane covering the upper part of the liver), and in the case of the sheep, which in Syrian sheep, was a most highly prized part of the animal. These the priest was to take away, and burn upon the wood on the altar. It was the LORD'S part, an offering made by fire of a sweet smell unto the Most High God. The breast and shoulder belonged to the priests, to be eaten by them. All that remained belonged to the offeror, to be eaten by him, his family and his friends, in a joyous holy festival. The uniqueness of these peace-offerings refers mainly to the benefits and blessings of Christ's Sacrifice as distributed and feasted upon by His people.
This particular kind of offering is called the peace-offering. The word peace, in the language of the Scriptures, has a dark meaning not commonly attached to it in everyday use. With most persons it means an end of hostilities, suggesting a harmonious agreement, tranquility and absence of trouble. But in the Scriptures, it means more. Its main meaning there is, prosperity, welfare, joy and happiness. The original Hebrew word for peace includes both these meanings. The old Greek version renders it by terms which mean a sacrificial feast of salvation. The peace offering (Hebrew zevah shelamim) was one of the sacrifices and offerings in the Hebrew Bible (Lev.3:7, 11–17).
The Scriptures elsewhere mention the peace-offering under a name which means victims slain for banquets, especially for sacrificial banquets. The idea of great blessing, prosperity and rejoicing, clearly enters into the description. We may therefore surely consider the peace-offering as a joyous festival, a solemn sacrificial banquet, which pictures the peace and joy which flows to believers from the atoning work of our LORD Jesus Christ, and our sanctification through His Blood and Spirit. Worship is not a thing of gloom, but of gladness. It does not block delight, joy and happiness. Worship mingles with a never-failing stream of true, pure and steady peace.
God is to His people "the God of peace" . . . He is our Fountain of Consolation.
2 Cor.1:3-5 Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; 4 Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. 5 For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ. (KJV)
He is a Dew of freshness and joy. Pro.16:15  In the light of the king's countenance is life; and his favour is as a cloud of the latter rain. (KJV) Pro.19:12 The king's wrath is as the roaring of a lion; but his favour is as dew upon the grass. (KJV)
He smiles upon us with His favor, and anoints us with His grace, the sunshine of His loving-kindness brightens our darkest day. He stretches forth His paternal hand to wipe away our tears. When we humbly confess His Son as our Sacrificial Lamb, and present ourselves a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto Him . . . that same altar becomes to us a wonderful source of blessing and gives us material for a happy festival. "Being justified by faith, we have peace." Rom. 14:17 For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. (KJV)
We all need to bring God a peace-offering, even those of us who are very far off from being a perfect Christian. We need to be joyful in the LORD. Christianity should be a great feast . . . for we are invited guests!
Let us consider some of the uniqueness of the Christian's happiness, as it is pictured to us by Almighty God Himself in the rituals which He prescribed for the ancient peace-offering.
(I). The peace-offering was a bloody offering. Everything in the Christian’s life, justification, sanctification, the forgiveness of our sins, God’s accepting our services, our hopes and our spiritual festivities . . . all go back to Jesus’ interceding sufferings as their fountain and foundation. If Jesus had not interceded on our behalf . . . to be slain and offered for us, we WOULD NOT, COULD NOT be forgiven . . .  and IF NOT FORGIVEN, we could NEVER be holy and acceptable to God; and without being holy and acceptable, we would NEVER have peace. Any spiritual joy the believer has, can be traced back to atonement by Blood. This is the center of   ALL Christian doctrine. Without atonement by Blood, the soul suffers and droops like a plant without water. If we want peace, it has to be founded upon the precious Blood of Jesus! (1 Pet.1:18-19).  

(2). The peace-offering comes AFTER the meat-offering. We must present the "fine flour" which is the best of our finest affections and the fresh first fruits of uncorrupted obedience . . . BEFORE we can come to feast on the rich provisions on the altar. We must completely surrender ourselves to God, and join with Him in a "covenant of salt" (Lev.2:13), before we can taste of the "peace-offering," or be happy in the LORD. A "covenant of salt" means an everlasting covenant. In the Bible, salt also came to symbolize purity, perfection, wisdom, hospitality, durability, and fidelity. The phrase "covenant of salt" (Num.18:19; 2 Chron.13:5) and a variation is found in Lev.2:13. It is found only three times in the Bible.
There is a strong determination in human hearts to REVERSE God’s divine order. People want to have comforting assurance that they are accepted and pardoned, BEFORE they start out on the work of obedience. They hold back from swearing loyalty to God, they refuse to offer themselves completely to the LORD. They want to have some spiritual comfort FIRST, to assure them that they are right. They want to experience the redeeming love of God BEFORE they do the will of God.
Before we can taste of the peace-offering, we must present the meat offering. You must FIRST give yourselves to God, with your heart, soul and mind fully made up to do His will, and then yield your whole being a living sacrifice (Rom.12:1) to Him . . . IF not, any joy you have will be a deceptive joy, and your hope shall die. You may say, "LORD, LORD;" but He knows them not . . . He never knew them. They may cry "Peace, peace!" but there is no peace. The meat-offering must go first. Mat.7:21-23 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works 23 And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. (KJV) . . . We must do it GOD’S way or we are in trouble!

(3). The peace-offering was planned so that the most inward, the most tender, and the most marrowy part of the sacrifice became the LORD'S part. The inner fat of the animal, the kidneys, the caul of the liver, and if were a sheep, the large fat tail were to be burned on the altar, a sweet savor unto the LORD. God must always be remembered in all our joys, especially when we come to praise and enjoy Him, and to have our hearts applied to the amazing provisions of His mercy. We must come offering to Him the deepest, most tender and richest of our soul's qualities. It was in this way that Jesus was made a Peace-Offering for us. Every deep affection, every tender emotion, all that we could yearn for . . . Jesus gave when, "through the Eternal Spirit, he offered himself to God," to give us peace with God.
Just as our Redeemer devoted every rich thought, every strong emotion, every intense feeling . . . for us . . . we must now send back the same to Jesus. We most certainly may love our spouse and our friends; BUT WE MUST LOVE JESUS MORE. We most certainly may love those united to us in this life on Earth; but we must have far more love for Jesus. We may be moved with earthly passions; but the most profound and best of all our emotions must be given to the LORD Jesus. The fat, the kidneys and the most tender and marrowy parts, are HIS! To withhold the best, or to spend them on friend or self, would be defilement, robbery of God, violation of His Law and a total lack of value to our offering.

(4). The peace-offerings were sacrifices of gratitude and praise . . . a kind of joyous, thankful banqueting. When the Jew came to make a peace-offering, it was with his heart moved and his thoughts filled with loving devotion. Any favor from God was a call for a peace-offering. When Hezekiah succeeded in abolishing idolatry, and saw the true worship restored, he had the people join him in a peace-offering. If anyone had been the subject of some great deliverance, or had been remarkably preserved or prospered, or had achieved some noble object, he expressed his grateful joy in a peace-offering.
The TRUE Christian has been the subject of wonderful favors from the LORD. We should praise and glorify Him always! Heb.13:15 By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. (KJV) . . . We have deliverance from sin, to which we may forever refer to with a memory of joy. Horrible dangers of Hell that once terrified us, were removed. All the brutal weapons of the devil that was once aimed at us as a rebel and a traitor to the righteous God, was now removed. Horrible thoughts of condemnation (John 3:18, 36) that was once upon us, and the Hell from below that seemed ready to meet us . . . now were gone!  Before Jesus came into our lives, all was dark and desperate, the loving Saviour rushed firmly between us and destruction, and snatched us as a brand from the everlasting burning (Am.4:11; Zec.3:2). We must consider the length and breadth and depth, and height of that love which was interposed for our rescue . . . the mighty woes that the LORD endured for us, the secure ground upon which we now stand in Christ Jesus . . . and our soul overflowing with joy! Eph. 3:17-19 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; 19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. (KJV) TRUE children of God: https://www.godcannotlie.org/true_children_of_god.htm

(5). The feasting of the peace-offering was on sacred food. The people might have feasts at home, and have other banquets; but they were NOT peace-offerings. The Christian may have feasts aside from the sacred food furnished directly from Christ. There are some honorable enjoyments in this world of a merely secular sort, and from none of these does Christianity exclude us . . . the happiness of earthly life, and fond associations of friendship and love, and cords which bind into a bundle of happiness. We have the beauties of the physical world, where has our God ever forbidden us to consider the lilies of the field, how they grow . . . or the heavens, the work of His Fingers . . . or the deep, massive sea, in which are life that cannot be counted . . . or the massive mountains, which proclaim His majesty . . . on and on and on!
When I speak of the TRUE Christian, I mean someone who has brought his whole burnt-offering unto God, by a TRUE heartfelt faith in Christ Jesus as the Lamb slain for the expiation of his sins; who has presented his meat-offering by the ENTIRE  surrender of himself a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God (Rom.12); who has brought his peace-offering with the clear consciousness that he owes everything to the precious Blood that was shed for him on Calvary, and who is now fully saturated and absorbed with the redeeming mercies of the LORD. He is a happy man as he has a feast with God.
THERE IS A GOD! This Universe is not an orphan! It has a righteous, almighty and loving Father, who sees all, provides for all and takes care of all. No matter what disorders we may see, we know that the LORD reigns, and is controlling everything for good. Injustice, oppression and wickedness may rise up before us, but the God who created this Universe and everything in it, is NOT overcome with fear. He one day shall take revenge on iniquity, and correct all inequalities. Job 20:5 That the triumphing of the wicked is short, and the joy of the hypocrite but for a moment. (KJV) Psalm 28:7 The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him. (KJV)
Until we believe God (1 John 5:10), and accept His Only Begotten Son (John 3:16) to save us, we were an alien and a stranger, but after that, we are now a member of the family of heaven, a Son of God, and an heir of eternal life (John 17:2-3; 1 John 5:10-20). Even though we may be penniless here, we have treasures in Heaven that shall never perish (Mat.6:19-21). Even though we may be friendless here, we have a home and friends to whom we are going, where we shall have eternal rest! Even though we may suffer here, we are gathering "a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory" (2 Cor.4:17). We are in the fellowship of the saints; we are united with the glorious company of the apostles; we are associated with angelic orders; we are a child of the Almighty, Creator God. Beyond this present day, we can look forward to still higher and greater things in the future. The Redeemer has gone to prepare a place for us (John 14:1-3), the glories of which now cannot possibly be understood. 2 Cor.5:1-2 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2 For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: (KJV) Even our body, now so full of aches, ills, pains and symptoms of decay, shall be touched with the healing Hand of God's tremendous power, and shaped into a glorious and unfading residence. We are a pilgrim now; but we are on our way to an eternal rest.
Dear one, the Christian's feast of joy and thankfulness, is represented by the ancient peace-offering. Joining ourself to Jesus, is NOT casting away all the pleasures and enjoyments of this life. Pro. 3:13-18 Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding. 14 For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold. 15 She is more precious than rubies: and all the things thou canst desire are not to be compared unto her. 16 Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour. 17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace. 18 She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her. (KJV) . . . Dear one, WISDOM is: The fear (reverence) of the LORD (Pro.1:7; 9:10).
Finally, let us be cautioned at how inconsistent it is for Christians to always be sad, sorrowing and desponding. We have so much to be cheerful for and have joy.
Psalm 68:3-4 But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God: yea, let them exceedingly rejoice. 4 Sing unto God, sing praises to his name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens by his name JAH, and rejoice before him.     (KJV)
Psalm 149:4-5 For the LORD taketh pleasure in his people: he will beautify the meek with salvation. 5 Let the saints be joyful in glory: let them sing aloud upon their beds. (KJV)
Let us honor, praise and glorify our Almighty Triune God, now and forever, Amen.

Moses clearly brings the GOSPEL in the Book of Leviticus!
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The Gospel most certainly is in Leviticus.

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