(Thoughts after reading Chapter 8 of “On Offering”, Vol 1, by H. C. Kim)
In my child days, I remember seeing people bringing rice to church for offering. This is not so common where I am now; probably the most common material we see brought for offering would be money.
Money is closely linked to our daily life; it represents potential for various things. In that sense the nature of the monetary form, which is common for offering in our day and age, is closest to the Grain Offering (Leviticus 2). Grains are used daily and it produces energy for our life, so it represents potential for various works. Another thing to notice in this regard is that, unlike the Burnt Offering, there is no laying of hand for the Grain Offering. Laying of hand represents the imputation of our sin to Christ. So we see that the focus of Grain Offering is comparatively more on our daily life.
We know that any offering bears the confession that everything that is given to us—our life, our existence, anything—ought to be offered to God for His service. The Grain Offering represents, in particular, that we offer our daily life, our breath, energy, all the resources and every potential that is given to us, for God’s service. This should indeed be our confession as we bring anything to God.
Now we notice that God commanded to pour oil, put frankincense on the Grain Offering and burn it with the salt of covenant.
There is no doubt that the oil represents the Holy Spirit (Luke 4:18). This is consistent with the New Testament teaching that nothing can be accepted to God unless it is the work of the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:16,17; 1 Corinthians 15:50). In particular, a proper offering should be the representative of our entire existence and bear the confession that we offer ourselves in Christ, and such proper confession can only be made as we rely wholly on the Holy Spirit (Galatians 5:17).
The incense represents our prayer (Psalm 141:2; Revelation 5:8). Psalm 50:14 urges us to “offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and perform your vows to the Most High.” Indeed, as we offer ourselves to God we give thanks that God accepts us in Christ, and we vow our eternal service to Him.
God said the salt represents the eternal covenant between Him and us. Just like the salt brings flavor to food, the covenant of our God is what makes everything meaningful. This covenant—that the Lord will be our God and we will be His people forever—was established, sealed and secured by our Lord Jesus Christ. Our offering is way below the standards of the Kingdom of God and is unacceptable to Him; but in Jesus, covered by His work, God accepts us and our offering. If not in the name of Christ, no offering will be accepted by God. As people who offered themselves to God in Christ, our daily life should represent Christ and His Kingship.