Devotional Readings

Leviticus 2 – The Meaning of Meat!

One of the excuses to ignore the KJV is it’s use if old unfamiliar wording..
In the 1600’s I’m sure this was quite well understood.

The word meat in this chapter…..isn’t the flesh, we read about in chapter one. But is a general food offering of fine flour, wheat as John Gill explains. It is explained easily in context. This is again clear to the original KJV readers, but to us sounds confusing since we dont use the word meat this way. Once understood in true meaning, the richness and accuracy of the KJV begins to bloom.

The correct English definition from Webster’s 1828 edition is:

MEAT, noun
1. Food in general; any thing eaten for nourishment, either by man or beast.

And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb–to you it shall be for meat Genesis 1:29.
Every moving thing that liveth, shall be meat for you Genesis 9:3. Thy carcass shall be meat to all fowls of the air Deuteronomy 28:26.

2. The flesh of animals used as food. This is now the more usual sense of the word. The meat of carnivorous animals is tough, coarse and ill flavored. The meat of herbivorous animals is generally palatable.

3. In Scripture, spiritual food; that which sustains and nourishes spiritual life or holiness.
My flesh is meat indeed. John 6:27.

4. Spiritual comfort; that which delights the soul.
My meat is to do the will of him that sent me. John 4:8.
5. Products of the earth proper for food. Habakkuk 3:17.
6. The more abstruse doctrines of the gospel, or mysteries of religion. Hebrews 5:12.

7. Ceremonial ordinances. Hebrews 13:9.

To sit at meat to sit or recline at the table.

minchâh מנחה Strongs 4503

BDB Definition:

1) gift, tribute, offering, present, oblation, sacrifice, meat offering

1a) gift, present
1b) tribute
1c) offering (to God)
1d) grain offering

Part of Speech: noun feminine
A Related Word by BDB/Strong’s Number: from an unused root meaning to apportion, i.e. bestow

Leviticus 2
King James Version (KJV)

1 And when any will offer a meat offering unto the Lord, his offering shall be of fine flour; and he shall pour oil upon it, and put frankincense thereon:

2 And he shall bring it to Aaron’s sons the priests: and he shall take thereout his handful of the flour thereof, and of the oil thereof, with all the frankincense thereof; and the priest shall burn the memorial of it upon the altar, to be an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the Lord:

3 And the remnant of the meat offering shall be Aaron’s and his sons’: it is a thing most holy of the offerings of the Lord made by fire.

4 And if thou bring an oblation of a meat offering baken in the oven, it shall be unleavened cakes of fine flour mingled with oil, or unleavened wafers anointed with oil.

5 And if thy oblation be a meat offering baken in a pan, it shall be of fine flour unleavened, mingled with oil.

6 Thou shalt part it in pieces, and pour oil thereon: it is a meat offering.

7 And if thy oblation be a meat offering baken in the fryingpan, it shall be made of fine flour with oil.

8 And thou shalt bring the meat offering that is made of these things unto the Lord: and when it is presented unto the priest, he shall bring it unto the altar.

9 And the priest shall take from the meat offering a memorial thereof, and shall burn it upon the altar: it is an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the Lord.

10 And that which is left of the meat offering shall be Aaron’s and his sons’: it is a thing most holy of the offerings of the Lord made by fire.

11 No meat offering, which ye shall bring unto the Lord, shall be made with leaven: for ye shall burn no leaven, nor any honey, in any offering of the Lord made by fire.

12 As for the oblation of the firstfruits, ye shall offer them unto the Lord: but they shall not be burnt on the altar for a sweet savour.

13 And every oblation of thy meat offering shalt thou season with salt; neither shalt thou suffer the salt of the covenant of thy God to be lacking from thy meat offering: with all thine offerings thou shalt offer salt.

14 And if thou offer a meat offering of thy firstfruits unto the Lord, thou shalt offer for the meat offering of thy firstfruits green ears of corn dried by the fire, even corn beaten out of full ears.

15 And thou shalt put oil upon it, and lay frankincense thereon: it is a meat offering.

16 And the priest shall burn the memorial of it, part of the beaten corn thereof, and part of the oil thereof, with all the frankincense thereof: it is an offering made by fire unto the Lord.

King James Version (KJV)
Public Domain

Old John Gill commentary


This chapter contains the law of the meat offering, and gives an account of what it was made of, fine flour, with oil poured, and frankincense put upon it, Lev 2:1 what was done with it; part of it burnt upon the altar, and the rest was the property of the priests, Lev 2:2 how it was to be when baked in an oven, or in a pan, or fried in a frying pan, Lev 2:4 what was prohibited in it, leaven and honey, Lev 2:11 what was to be used in it, salt, Lev 2:13 and what was to be the oblation and meat offering of the first fruits, and what to be done with it, Lev 2:12.

Leviticus 2:1

And when any man will offer a meat offering unto the Lord,…. Or, “when a soul”, and which Onkelos renders “a man”, so called from his more noble part; and, as the Jews say, this word is used because the Minchah, or meat offering here spoken of, was a freewill offering, and was offered up with all the heart and soul; and one that offered in this manner, it was all one as if he offered his soul to the Lord (s): there were some meat offerings which were appointed and fixed at certain times, and were obliged to be offered, as at the daily sacrifice, the consecration of priests, the waving of the sheaf, &c. Exo 29:40 but this was a freewill offering; wherefore it is said, “when any man will offer”; the Hebrew word מנחה, “a meat offering”, may be derived from נחה, “to bring” or “offer”, and so is a name common to offerings of any sort; or from הניח, to “recreate” and delight, it being of a sweet savour to the Lord, as other offerings were; others derive it from מנח, a root not in use, and in the Chaldee language signifies a gift or present, in which sense this word is used, Gen 32:13.

his offering shall be of fine flour; of flour of wheat, Exo 29:2 for, as the Jews say, there is no fine flour but wheat, and this was for the meat offering, 1Ch 21:23 and this was to be of the finest of the wheat; for all offerings, whether private or public, were to be of the best, and to be brought from those places which were noted for having the best; and the best places for fine flour were Mechmas and Mezonicha, and the next to them were Caphariim, in the valley; and though it might be taken out of any part of the land of Israel and used, yet it chiefly came from hence (t); and according to the Jewish writers (u); the least quantity of fine flour used in a meat offering was the tenth part of an ephah, which was about three pints and a half, and a fifth part of half a pint: Christ was prefigured by the meat offering; his sacrifice came in the room of it, and put an end to it, Psa 40:7 whose flesh is meat indeed, the true meat or bread, in distinction from this typical meat offering, Joh 6:55 the fine flour denotes the choiceness, excellency, and purity of Christ; the dignity of his person, the superiority of him to angels and men, being the chiefest, and chosen out of ten thousand; the purity of his human nature being free from the bran of original corruption, and the spotlessness of his sacrifice: and fine flour of wheat being that of which bread is made, which is the principal part of human sustenance, and what strengthens the heart of man, and nourishes him, and is the means of maintaining and supporting life; it is a fit emblem of Christ, the bread of life, by which the saints are supported in their spiritual life, and strengthened to perform vital acts, and are nourished up unto everlasting life, and who, as the meat offering, is called the bread of God, Lev 21:6 Joh 6:33.

and he shall pour oil upon it; upon all of it, as Jarchi observes, because it was mingled with it, and it was the best oil that was used; and though it might be brought from any part of the land of Israel, which was a land of oil olive, yet the chief place for oil was Tekoah, and the next to it was Ragab beyond Jordan, and from hence it was usually brought (w); and the common quantity was a log, or half a pint, to a tenth deal of fine flour, as Gersom asserts from the wise men, and to which Maimonides (x) agrees; and Gersom on the place observes, that it is proper that some of the oil should be put in the lower part of the vessel, and after that the fine flour should put in it, and then he should pour some of it upon it and mix it: the oil denotes the grace of the Spirit poured out upon Christ without measure, the oil of gladness, with which he was anointed above his fellows, and from whence he has the name of Messiah or Christ, or Anointed; and with which he was anointed to be prophet, priest, and King, and which renders him very desirable and delightful to his people, his name being as ointment poured forth, Psa 45:7.

and put frankincense thereon; on a part of it, as Jarchi’s note is; and according to him, the man that brought the meat offering left an handful of frankincense upon it on one side; and the reason of this was, because it was not to be mixed with it as the oil was, and it was not to be taken in the handful with it (z); and the quantity of the frankincense, as Gersom says, was one handful: this denoted the sweet odour and acceptableness of Christ, the meat offering, both to God and to his people: it is an observation of the Jewish writers, that the pouring out of the oil on the fine flour, and mixing it with it, and putting on the frankincense, might be done by a stranger, by any man, by the man that brought the meat offering, but what follows after the bringing of it to the priest were done by him (a).

(s) Jarchi, Aben Ezra, & Baal Hatturim, in loc. (t) Misn. Menachot, c. 8. sect. 1. (u) Jarchi & Gersom in loc. (w) Misn. Menachot, c. 8. sect. 3. (x) Hilchot Maaseh, Hakorbanot, c. 13. sect 5. (z) Vid T. Bab. Sotah, fol. 14. 2. (a) T. Bab. Menachot, fol. 9. 1. & 18. 2. & Pesachim, fol. 36. 1. & Jarchi in loc.

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