15 “‘From the day after the Sabbath, the day you brought the sheaf of the wave offering, count off seven full weeks. 16 Count off fifty days up to the day after the seventh Sabbath, and then present an offering of new grain to the Lord. 17 From wherever you live, bring two loaves made of two-tenths of an ephah of the finest flour, baked with yeast, as a wave offering of firstfruits to the Lord.
This passage provides Old Testament context for what Christians refer to as Pentecost, which literally means “the fiftieth.” In Hebrew culture, the Pentecost was a time of celebration, marking the day when first-fruits of the wheat harvest were offered to the Lord.
The practice of offering God our first fruits is symbolic of our roles as stewards. Giving God our first and finest fruits is a sign of faith, recognizing that all things come from God and, without His provisions, we would have nothing. And even though we no longer live in an agrarian society, we can still offer God our first fruits in the form of time, money and talents.
We recognize that God is the giver of all good things, and we are not owners but stewards of that which He has allotted to us. Some of us have been given much – and our fleshly self wants to believe we earned it and deserve it – but as it says in Luke 12:48, “To whom much is given, much is required.”
Let us not give God only our surplus and dregs; rather let us give Him the first and the best of what we have been blessed with, recognizing that “the Lord gives and the Lord takes away.” (Job 1:21).
Thoughts for the day
- What does this passage tell you about God or Jesus?
- What does this passage tell you about humanity?
- What do you feel God is telling you through this passage?
- How can you apply this message in an area of your life that needs transformation?
- Is there anyone you think should hear or will benefit from this message? Go and tell them.
Invite the Holy Spirit to be present with you in this moment and then, wait. Allow God’s peace to draw near.