Daily Devotional

January 5, 2021

Daybreak: Numbers 28:1-31

“And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Command the children of Israel, and say unto them, My offering, and my bread for my sacrifices made by fire, for a sweet savour unto me, shall ye observe to offer unto me in their due season.” (Numbers 28:1-2)

I like to cook. One time, I was going through a stage of baking all sorts of breads and sweet rolls. Imagine my chagrin one day when, upon tasting a beautiful batch of caramel nut cinnamon rolls still warm from the oven, we found them to be absolutely tasteless. Upon careful review, I found that I had somehow omitted the salt. Strange that only two teaspoons of salt omitted from a large batch of dough would have such a devastating effect. We even went so far as to try to sprinkle the rolls with a little salt. No good! It was too late. As I recall, that batch was consigned to the garbage can.

What does this have to do with Numbers 28? Basically, if we are going to please God and get His blessing upon our lives, we must follow His directions precisely. In Old Testament times, God set down the required sacrifices for the various occasions: daily, Sabbath, monthly, and for the various religious festivals. To a priesthood familiar with these requirements, none of these should have proved difficult. God would have been displeased if the priest had chosen to deviate from His plan — perhaps using three tenth deals of flour instead of two, or a third part of an hin of oil instead of a fourth part. Obedience to God’s command was actually more important to Him than the sacrifice itself. “To obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams” (1 Samuel 15:22).

Today, we are no longer expected to offer burnt sacrifices to the Lord. We are saved by faith in the atoning provision of Jesus Christ. Some people take this out of context, however, assuming that after salvation, a Christian can get away with almost anything and still remain saved. Not so, according to the Word of God.

As Christians, we are to walk carefully before the Lord, following His will for our lives as He reveals this to us. We do not do this in a spirit of fear and bondage. Rather, it is our joy to walk as the Lord would have us to walk. We have grasped at least in a measure, the injunction of Romans 12:1, which says, “present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”

Background

A “meat” sacrifice was not necessarily an animal sacrifice. For example, Numbers 28:12 reads, “And three tenth deals of flour for a meat offering.” Elsewhere in the Old Testament we also find meat offering to signify the offering of flour.

In this chapter, God revealed His requirements for various sacrificial offerings: those that were offered daily, on the Sabbath, monthly, and for the religious festivals of “The Feast of Unleavened Bread” and the “Festival of First Fruits.” Scripture does not explain why God chose the different amounts and types of animals and other components for the various sacrifices. We do know, however, that blood sacrifices were a temporary means of atonement for the sin of the people until the day when Jesus would die on the Cross — providing the ultimate sacrifice for sin.

In addition to atonement for sin, sacrifices were a way for the people to show their love, respect, and need for the God of Heaven. As long as the people continued to offer these sacrifices in an attitude of willing service and appreciation, God would continue to bless them.

Amplified Outline

(Hannah’s Bible Outlines - Used by permission per WORDsearch)

III.    Events on the plain of Moab
    B.    The preparation for entering Canaan
        2.    Miscellaneous instructions 
            c.    The regulations concerning various offerings
                (1)    The daily offerings (28:1-8)
                (2)    The Sabbath offerings (28:9-10)
                (3)    The monthly offerings (28:11-15)
                (4)    The Passover offerings (28:16-25)
                (5)    The Feast of Weeks offering (28:26-31)

A Closer Look

  1. When and how was the Passover Festival to be celebrated?
     
  2. The focus verses describe a properly-offered sacrifice as a “sweet savour” unto God. What do you think this means?
     
  3. In the Old Testament the items sacrificed were first slain and then burnt by fire. Today, however, we are instructed to present our bodies a “living sacrifice.” What does this mean in terms of our everyday lives?

Conclusion

God wants a close personal relationship with His children on earth. That is why He created mankind in the first place. To attain this close walk, we must sacrifice our wills to Him — willingly and completely. Let us do so today!

Reference Materials