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Leviticus: Chapter 2

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1When anyone presents a grain offering to the LORD, the offering shall be of choice flour; the worshiper shall pour oil on it, and put frankincense on it, 2and bring it to Aaron's sons the priests. After taking from it a handful of the choice flour and oil, with all its frankincense, the priest shall turn this token portion into smoke on the altar, an offering by fire of pleasing odor to the LORD. 3And what is left of the grain offering shall be for Aaron and his sons, a most holy part of the offerings by fire to the LORD.

4When you present a grain offering baked in the oven, it shall be of choice flour: unleavened cakes mixed with oil, or unleavened wafers spread with oil. 5If your offering is grain prepared on a griddle, it shall be of choice flour mixed with oil, unleavened; 6break it in pieces, and pour oil on it; it is a grain offering. 7If your offering is grain prepared in a pan, it shall be made of choice flour in oil. 8You shall bring to the LORD the grain offering that is prepared in any of these ways; and when it is presented to the priest, he shall take it to the altar. 9The priest shall remove from the grain offering its token portion and turn this into smoke on the altar, an offering by fire of pleasing odor to the LORD. 10And what is left of the grain offering shall be for Aaron and his sons; it is a most holy part of the offerings by fire to the LORD.

11No grain offering that you bring to the LORD shall be made with leaven, for you must not turn any leaven or honey into smoke as an offering by fire to the LORD. 12You may bring them to the LORD as an offering of choice products, but they shall not be offered on the altar for a pleasing odor. 13You shall not omit from your grain offerings the salt of the covenant with your God; with all your offerings you shall offer salt.

14If you bring a grain offering of first fruits to the LORD, you shall bring as the grain offering of your first fruits coarse new grain from fresh ears, parched with fire. 15You shall add oil to it and lay frankincense on it; it is a grain offering. 16And the priest shall turn a token portion of it into smoke—some of the coarse grain and oil with all its frankincense; it is an offering by fire to the LORD.

Text Commentary view alone

2.1–16 : The grain offering.

The position of this chapter after the burnt offering is probably based on the idea that the grain offering can serve as a substitute for that animal offering. This then continues the descending value of offerings from animal offerings of descending value (cf. 5.1–13 ) to grain offerings, of still less value. Grain offerings can also be offered independently ( 6.19–23; 7.12–14; Num 5.15–26;6.19–21 ) and may accompany animal offerings (Num 15.1–12 ). Ch 2 discusses raw (vv. 1–3 ) and cooked (vv. 4–10 ) grain offerings. Both of these have oil; frankincense is used on only the raw type. The lack of incense with the cooked type may be a concession to the poor, who could not afford it. Oil and frankin‐cense are apparently signs of joy, and are omitted from other uncooked grain offerings that are associated with wrongdoing (Lev 5.11; Num 5.15 ).

1 :

Frankincense, an aromatic resin from shrubs found in Arabia and East Africa.

2 :

Pleasing odor, see 1.9n.

3 :

The priests’ consumption of many sacrifices is ordained in Num 18.8–10 . Not all grain offerings were eaten (cf. Lev 6.23 ). Most holy, see 1.3 .

11–12 :

The prohibition of leaven and fruit syrup (“honey,” typically made from dates or grapes) may have to do with keeping fermenting or fermented materials away from the altar. Wine (or beer) libations accompanying offerings are not necessarily an exception since these are not burned on the altar. See Num 15.2–16n.; 28.5–7n.

12 :

Choice products, i.e., first processed products, including oil, wine, grain, mixed bread or dough (Num 15.20–21; 18.12–13,27 ) presumably as well as leavened bread and fruit syrup (Lev 2.12 ).

13 :

Salt of the covenant, salt, as a preservative, symbolized the perpetuity of the covenant; cf. Num 18.19; 2 Chr 13.5 .

14 :

The offering of first fruits may be a form of the offering found in 23.10–11 .

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