Leviticus 3: This offering is called the “shelamim” offering. It is translated as “peace offering.” The word “shelamim” is related to the word “shalom,” which means “well-being.”
There are some similarities between this offering and the previous two. Some of the same animals could be used for this offering as for the burnt offering. The same altar was used by all three offerings. But unlike the Burnt Offering, the zevah shelamim (“sacred gift of greeting”), is not totally consumed by fire. Parts of the Peace Offering are shared by the priests and by the offerer.
The peace offering speaks of the fellowship believers have with Elohim through Yeshua Messiah. The only way we can come to Elohim is through Messiah. He is the only way to peace.
No one single offering can show us the how Elohim sees His Son. This is what Elohim was showing the Israelites through these offerings and throughout His Torah. He was showing them His Son. Elohim used these offerings and His entire books of Torah and prophecy to present Yeshua Messiah to His people (Luke 24:44 and John 1:45).
This peace offering dramatized peace and reconciliation between the offerer and Elohim.
(Lev 3:1 NASB) ‘Now if his offering is a sacrifice of peace offerings, if he is going to offer out of the herd, whether male or female, he shall offer it without defect before the LORD.
Lev 3:1: While we have peace with Elohim due to the price paid by the blood of Yeshua, the emphasis on the peace offering is on the fellowship we have with Elohim and with one another.
Keep in mind that while we were blind and totally opposed to Elohim, He reconciled with us. He paid the price for our reconciliation with Him and caused it to happen.
The peace offering is different from the burnt offering in several ways. The burnt offering had to be a male without blemish. In the peace offering, the animal could be a male or female without blemish.
(Lev 3:2 NASB) ‘And he shall lay his hand on the head of his offering and slay it at the doorway of the tent of meeting, and Aaron’s sons, the priests, shall sprinkle the blood around on the altar.
Lev 3:2: Up to this point, the peace offering is very similar to the burnt offering.
(Lev 3:3 NASB) ‘And from the sacrifice of the peace offerings, he shall present an offering by fire to the LORD, the fat that covers the entrails and all the fat that is on the entrails,
(Lev 3:4 NASB) and the two kidneys with the fat that is on them, which is on the loins, and the lobe of the liver, which he shall remove with the kidneys.
Lev 3:4: Another difference between the burnt offering and the peace offering is noted here. All of the burnt offering is placed on the altar. In the peace offering, only the choice portion of the animal was used in the sacrifice. That is, the inward parts. In ancient divination in that day, the inwards parts were often cut up and used for pagan ceremonies to allegedly foretell the future. However, this is the portion that Elohim desires to be burnt for Him.
(Lev 3:5 NASB) ‘Then Aaron’s sons shall offer it up in smoke on the altar on the burnt offering, which is on the wood that is on the fire; it is an offering by fire of a soothing aroma to the LORD.
Lev 3:5: The offering was consumed by fire. This speaks of the total dedication of Yeshua in His suffering and testing. The peace offering shows us that the death and suffering of Messiah was not just for our sins. It is through His death that He sent the Breath of the Father into His people so they can now have fellowship with Him. Without a love and desire for His Torah, we cannot have fellowship with the Father.
(Lev 3:6 NASB) ‘But if his offering for a sacrifice of peace offerings to the LORD is from the flock, he shall offer it, male or female, without defect.
(Lev 3:7 NASB) ‘If he is going to offer a lamb for his offering, then he shall offer it before the LORD,
Lev 3:7: The lamb is an excellent portrayal of the character of Messiah and is appropriate as a peace offering.
The bullock, on the other hand, portrayed the servant side of Yeshua Messiah in His life and work. The bullock is a beast of burden and a friend to man. Yeshua came as Elohim’s servant to do His will.
The lamb sets forth Messiah in His complete identification with man in life and in death. At the beginning of His time of teaching, John the Baptist identified Him this way (John 1:29). This would have had great meaning to those in Israel. Yeshua is still the lamb of Elohim in His resurrection (Rev. 5:6). And again when He returns. (Rev. 6:16-17).
These offerings are different and varied in their methods, substance and meaning. The purpose for this is because Yeshua Messiah cannot be summed up in one offering. He is shown in different animals and substances used in different offerings.
(Lev 3:8 NASB) and he shall lay his hand on the head of his offering, and slay it before the tent of meeting; and Aaron’s sons shall sprinkle its blood around on the altar.
(Lev 3:9 NASB) ‘And from the sacrifice of peace offerings he shall bring as an offering by fire to the LORD, its fat, the entire fat tail which he shall remove close to the backbone, and the fat that covers the entrails and all the fat that is on the entrails,
(Lev 3:10 NASB) and the two kidneys with the fat that is on them, which is on the loins, and the lobe of the liver, which he shall remove with the kidneys.
Lev 3:10: The fat of the animal is what Elohim wants presented to Himself. Man is not to eat it.
Fellowship with Elohim rests upon the blood of Messiah, but it depends upon one other thing also. The offerer must present His offering at the altar of Elohim. That is what we all must do also. Although we cannot do sacrifices at the present time, we must present ourselves to Elohim as a living sacrifice (Rom. 12:1-2). That is how you find peace in Yeshua Messiah (Matt. 11:28-30).
(Lev 3:11 NASB) ‘Then the priest shall offer it up in smoke on the altar, as food, an offering by fire to the LORD.
Lev 3:11: The offerer was to partake in this also(Deut. 12:6-7). After the fat was consumed, the priest ate of the breast and shoulder. The offerer ate the remainder and He did it in Elohim’s house. Elohim is the Host and the sinner is the guest. Elohim provides the table in the peace offering.
(Lev 3:12 NASB) ‘Moreover, if his offering is a goat, then he shall offer it before the LORD,
Lev 3:12: The goat is the other type of peace offering that was allowed. This speaks of Yeshua Messiah being made sin for us. Yeshua was made a scapegoat for us and for our sins.
(Lev 3:13 NASB) and he shall lay his hand on its head and slay it before the tent of meeting; and the sons of Aaron shall sprinkle its blood around on the altar.
(Lev 3:14 NASB) ‘And from it he shall present his offering as an offering by fire to the LORD, the fat that covers the entrails and all the fat that is on the entrails,
(Lev 3:15 NASB) and the two kidneys with the fat that is on them, which is on the loins, and the lobe of the liver, which he shall remove with the kidneys.
(Lev 3:16 NASB) ‘And the priest shall offer them up in smoke on the altar as food, an offering by fire for a soothing aroma; all fat is the LORD’S.
Lev 3:16: Once again, the fat is offered to Elohim. The fat is not to be eaten.
(Lev 3:17 NASB) ‘It is a perpetual statute throughout your generations in all your dwellings: you shall not eat any fat or any blood.'”
Lev 3:17: Man is prohibited from eating the fat and the blood. That is a perpetual statute throughout all the generations. We have found out that the fat and blood are also the parts of an animal that are the most unhealthy also.
The fat is Elohim’s. It was considered the best part of the sacrifice because of the aroma and He demands it. He demands the inward parts also. He demands the same thing from us. If we are to have fellowship with Him, we are to give Him our very best. Not only from the excess that He has blessed us with, but we are to give him even our inward parts as a sacrifice to Him in obedience. It is our duty.
Patrick McGuireCopyright 2014 Patrick McGuire and Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly All rights reserved, no portion of this Lesson may be reproduced in any manner whatsoever without written permission except in the case of brief quotations in articles and reviews. Beit Yeshua Torah Assembly Fort Smith, Arkansas