TEACHER:  Ken Hicks

SCRIPTURES:  Leviticus 23:9-14;  1 Corinthians 15:20-23

VIDEO:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9fe8aRn8hnA

BOTTOM LINE:  Jesus was our offering of First Fruits, once and for all.  And once we exchange our life w/ His Life, Death and Resurrection, we are to be His earthly picture of the First Fruits in the lives of those around us.

QUESTION:  Have you experienced the First Fruit Jesus came to be, in your life in a real, personal way?

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In Israel, grains were planted in the Fall. They germinated in the ground through the winter, and shot up as soon as weather got warm in the spring … Barley first, and then Wheat.

The stalks were cut and tacked in sheaves for the harvesters to collect for thrashing … but harvesting or eating any of the Grain was not permitted until a single sheaf was brought to the priests at sunrise on the 1st day following a particular Sabbath, after Passover, and this day was called The Feast of First Fruits.

Each Israelite who possessed a harvest observed the Feast by bringing a single sheaf from the First Fruits of the barley Harvest to the priest, who would then wave it before the Lord. This Wave Offering was prescribed by God as a symbol that God would ensure that the remainder of the Harvest would be realized in the days that followed.

I think there are 3 Main Principles we HAVE to experience from this Feast:

  1. The Offering of the Very Best.

Not only are the First Fruits the 1st … but they are the very best! When the farmer went out to cut the single sheaf that was to be presented before the Lord, he took great care to make sure that I was the Very Best from his crops.

  1. The Promise of a Future Harvest.

When the offering of the First Fruits of the crop was made to God, it represented a prayer to Him … to watch over the future Harvest that was about to commence. One of the main aspects of the Feast of First Fruits is that it anticipated the future Harvest that was represented by the single sheaf that was brought before the Lord as an offering.

  1. The Making Holy of the Whole.

The sheaf that was brought as an offering to the Lord represented the Entire crop … by offering that portion to the Lord, it set aside the entire Harvest as being consecrated to the Lord … and thus made Holy.

 

APPLICATION:  And so why this Feast on EASTER weekend?

Paul clearly connects the Resurrection of Jesus to the Feast of First Fruits …

1 Corinthians 15:20-23 … “20  But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. 22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. 23 But each in turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him.”

  1. The Offering of the Very Best.

By offering Himself … as an Atonement for us … and then arising from the tomb … Jesus did what NO other offerings could do!

Romans 8:3 … “3  For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh as an offering …”

As our First Fruits … Jesus was offering Himself up as the VERY BEST possible offering. Unlike the blood of animals … or the waving of a Grain Offering … Jesus’ offering was Forever as we sung about earlier … It was permanent … The BEST … and the LAST that was ever needed.

 

  1. The Promise of a Future Harvest.

We read about it earlier in Paul’s letter to the Church in Corinth … the fact that Jesus arose from the Grave is our guarantee that 1-day all who have placed our Faith and Trust in Him … will also experience the Resurrection …

Jesus is the First Fruits that has the Promise of a Future Harvest too …

 

  1. The Making Holy of the Whole.

As our representation before God … it’s thru the Life, Death and Resurrection of Jesus we are made Holy before God!

2 Corinthians 5:21 … “21  God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him, we might become the righteousness of God.”

It’s through our association w/ Jesus … we are made Holy before God … much in the same way that the Entire Harvest was represented and made Holy by that Single Sheaf of barley that was Waved before God.

 

What a powerful reminder of not only The Feast of First Fruits, but how powerful and relevant the Resurrection is for each and every one of us:

  1. Jesus was the BEST Offering.
  2. Jesus has promised He will Come again, and there will be another Harvest.
  3. And it’s thru Jesus that we can be restored and redeemed and made Holy in the eyes of God.
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