Messiah 201
Messiah in the Temple Offerings
R' Richard Pustelniak
January 2, 2001

The Korban Olah
The Korban Minchah
The Source Text
Important Terms
The Missing "Process" Elements
The Korban Minchah's Position in "The Process"
The Essential Korban Minchah
The Essential Elements of the Korban Minchah
The Preparation of the Korban Minchah
Meditating on the Melach haB'rit (Salt of the Covenant)
The Korban Minchah, Fulfilled in Messiah
The Zevach Shelamim
The Chatat
The Asham

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Warning: The truths contained in this teaching are not for the faint of heart, or the lukewarm! You can be sure that haSatan (the adversary) will do all he can to keep you from understanding and applying the concepts and truths contained herein, but it is our prayer that every one who receives these notes will carefully consider and apply the contents to their lives.

V. The Korban Minchah

V-A. The Source Text
bible iconWhen anyone offers a grain offering to the L_RD, his offering shall be of fine flour. And he shall pour oil on it, and put frankincense on it. He shall bring it to Aaron's sons, the priests, one of whom shall take from it his handful of fine flour and oil with all the frankincense. And the priest shall burn it as a memorial on the altar, an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the L_RD. The rest of the grain offering shall be Aaron's and his sons'. It is most holy of the offerings to the L_RD made by fire. And if you bring as an offering a grain offering baked in the oven, it shall be unleavened cakes of fine flour mixed with oil, or unleavened wafers anointed with oil. But if your offering is a grain offering baked in a pan, it shall be of fine flour, unleavened, mixed with oil. You shall break it in pieces and pour oil on it; it is a grain offering. If your offering is a grain offering baked in a covered pan, it shall be made of fine flour with oil. You shall bring the grain offering that is made of these things to the L_RD. And when it is presented to the priest, he shall bring it to the altar. Then the priest shall take from the grain offering a memorial portion, and burn it on the altar. It is an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the L_RD. And what is left of the grain offering shall be Aaron's and his sons'. It is most holy of the offerings to the L_RD made by fire. No grain offering which you bring to the L_RD shall be made with leaven, for you shall burn no leaven nor any honey in any offering to the L_RD made by fire. As for the offering of the firstfruits, you shall offer them to the L_RD, but they shall not be burned on the altar for a sweet aroma. And every offering of your grain offering you shall season with salt; you shall not allow the salt of the covenant of your G_d to be lacking from your grain offering. With all your offerings you shall offer salt. If you offer a grain offering of your firstfruits to the L_RD, you shall offer for the grain offering of your firstfruits green heads of grain roasted on the fire, grain beaten from full heads. And you shall put oil on it, and lay frankincense on it. It is a grain offering. Then the priest shall burn the memorial portion: part of its beaten grain and part of its oil, with all the frankincense, as an offering made by fire to the L_RD. (Lev 2:1-16, emphasis and emendation added)
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V-B. Important Terms

Minchah ( ): a tribute, donation, or gift. In the context of a korban to the Holy One, it is usually bloodless and voluntary. This has come to refer to the afternoon, as this is the time when the corporate minchah was offered.

According to the "Strong's Concordance," the minchah, "must be regarded as a token of love, gratitude and thanksgiving to G_d, who is Himself the Giver of all good gifts."

This offering can express the idea of seeking peace, where there once was its lack. This can be seen in Jacob's offering to his brother Esau, upon Jacob's return, and his hearing of Esau's charging forth to meet him.
bible iconSo he lodged there that same night, and took what came to his hand as a present (minchah) for Esau his brother: two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, thirty milk camels with their colts, forty cows and ten bulls, twenty female donkeys and ten foals. Then he delivered them to the hand of his servants, every drove by itself, and said to his servants, "Pass over before me, and put some distance between successive droves." And he commanded the first one, saying, "When Esau my brother meets you and asks you, saying, 'To whom do you belong, and where are you going? Whose are these in front of you?' then you shall say, 'They are your servant Jacob's. It is a present (minchah) sent to my lord Esau; and behold, he also is behind us.'" So he commanded the second, the third, and all who followed the droves, saying, "In this manner you shall speak to Esau when you find him; and also say, 'Behold, your servant Jacob is behind us.'" For he said, "I will appease him with the present (minchah) that goes before me, and afterward I will see his face; perhaps he will accept me." So the present (minchah) went on over before him, but he himself lodged that night in the camp. (Gen 32:13-21, emphasis and emendation added)
Also, we can see the minchah as a tribute to a benefactor.
bible iconNow all the earth sought the presence of Solomon to hear his wisdom, which G_d had put in his heart. Each man brought his present (minchah): articles of silver and gold, garments, armor, spices, horses, and mules, at a set rate year by year. (1Ki 10:24-25, emphasis and emendation added)
The modern (memorial) counterpart to the daily corporate minchah is the minchah (or afternoon) prayer service, which is the shortest of the daily prayer services. The minchah prayer service precedes, but is separate from, the ma'ariv (evening) prayer service.

Menuchah ( ), from the Hebrew shoresh (root), : peace, quietness, or rest. In the context of today's understandings, the meaning can be extended to include: contentment, satisfaction, balance, equilibrium, and stasis.

There is a definite lack of tension and stress when menuchah is present.
Munach ( ), is derived from the very same root, and is a tonal taam (spirit, flavor, or essence), applied in conjunction with the public reading of Holy Scripture, with its trope (or cantillation). It is one of many teamim (plural form) used for this purpose. In keeping with its root, it means "to rest," or "to bring to resolution." As in life, a musical tune must come to a resolution, or there is palpable tension. This idea most certainly carries over to the korban minchah, where the korban is intended to express a resolution, with a commensurate relaxation, or to facilitate, or catalyze, such a resolution.
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V-C. The Missing "Process" Elements

As stated in the introduction to this series, there are five types of korbanot, only two of which have anything whatsoever to do with sin. The other three are making completely different statements, expressing completely different ideas. Unfortunately, the only thing that most believers know, about our Messiah's korban, is that it atones for sin. As we shall see in the next section, if that is all our Messiah has done for us, we have only been brought back to where we first came in, and there are three essential korbanot still due. Actually, only one of the remaining korbanot is actually an offering made to the Holy One. The korban in view, the korban minchah, is an expression of relief, quietness of spirit, and peace. The final korban is actually a celebration of the state of intimacy with our Creator, as well as an expression of our desire to share what we have gained with others.

We all know that our Messiah voluntarily laid down on that wood, and yielded up His life, while suspended between heaven and earth, like smoke, in order to fulfill for us all of the temple korbanot. His korban also represents the victory over strife and struggle, as well as the peace we have with our beloved Creator, which comes as result of our complete surrender to Him, and to His ways. If all we know about His korban is the propitiatory aspects of it, we are missing out on our very reason for living, as well as the very best of what He has provided and accomplished for us, thereby.

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V-D. The Korban Minchah's Position in "The Process"

The following diagram shall serve to encapsulate our study of this offering:

package image

The relationship status, with the Holy One, where the korban minchah becomes available, and is actually required, is indicated by the highlighted area on the map. The actual offering is represented by the emphasized ring, just inside the highlighted area. The center area of the map represents the essential goal of the whole korbanot process, "intimacy with our Creator," which is the very reason we were all created; the reason for life, if you will.

As we shall see, in our study of the other offerings in this series, the highlighted area represents a relational state that ensues after a korban olah (representing complete, whole-hearted dedication and devotion to the Holy One) has been made. This is where there is no sin, nor its stain, associated with the individual. If sin, or its stain, would be present, the area of the map then occupied would be farther from its center. Also, as we shall see, the korban olah, and its minchah, would be unavailable to that individual, until the prohibiting conditions have been properly dealt with.

The korban minchah is actually offered only in conjunction with — immediately subsequent to — the offering of a korban olah. The korban minchah is actually "attached" to its associated korban olah. The significance of this "attachment" shall be made evident shortly.

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V-E. The Essential Korban Minchah

Like the korban olah, the korban minchah has nothing whatsoever to do with sin. In fact, it is an element of the very best that our Messiah has wrought for us, in the cross. The korban minchah differs from all of the other korbanot, in that there is no rite of s'michat yadayim (laying on of hands) associated specifically with it. Hence there is no expression of agency here. The korban minchah is therefore a "direct" expression, made by the one bringing the offering.

The korban minchah is essentially an expression of relaxation, and of the release of tensions, and is a tribute/offering of thanks for G_d's provision for our lives and our families, of peace and rest in Him. It is an expression of the tranquility that comes only through our complete trust in G_d for our provision, protection, and life, as expressed in the korban olah. In fact, the korban olah is not offered in isolation from "its" minchah. Neither is the korban minchah offered without its korban olah.

A portion of the korban minchah is given to the ministering priest, who represents the incarnation of G_d, our Messiah and interface with the Ein Sof (the Ineffable One). As such, the minchah represents somewhat of a return on His investment in us. It is not payment, in recompense of salvation. Rather, it represents the fruitfulness that results from a life given over to Him, without reservation.

The korban minchah is an expression of recognition, resting in the truth that we are no longer fully responsible for our own provision. We can relax, knowing that our Creator has our best interests at heart. We no longer have to fear, nor fight for every scrap.

bible iconFor I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the L_RD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope. (Jer 29:11, emendation added)

bible iconRepay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. (Rom 12:17-18, emphasis added)

The korban minchah represents the relaxation, and release from the stresses of daily life, a release that comes only when we place all that we are on the altar, and send it to the Holy One, by way of the korban olah.

bible iconRejoice in the L_rd always. Again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentleness be known to all men. The L_rd is at hand. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to G_d; and the peace of G_d, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Messiah Y'Shua. Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy-- meditate on these things. (Phil 4:4-8, emphasis and emendation added)
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V-F. The Essential Elements of the Korban Minchah

The following lists the essential elements of the korban minchah:

  • The korban minchah is completely voluntary, unlike the korban asham (the so called "guilt" offering) and the korban chatat (the so called "sin" offering), which are obligatory. While the korban minchah "is" completely voluntary, the associated volition is stipulated to by the decision to offer the korban olah, to which the korban minchah is attached.

  • The korban minchah consists of three primary components: solet, shemen, and levonah

    1. sólet ( ): fine flour, or meal

      The solet is to be ground exceedingly fine. This represents the work of t'shuvah (repentance, or, more succinctly, the process of sanctification)
      bible iconI beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of G_d, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice (korban), holy, acceptable to G_d, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of G_d. (Rom 12:1-2, emphasis and emendation added)

      bible iconFor the weapons of our warfare are not carnal (corporeal) but mighty in G_d for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of G_d, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Messiah, and being ready to punish all disobedience when your obedience is fulfilled. (2Cor 10:4-6, emphasis and emendation added)
      The solet must be without leaven, without chametz ( ), which means "bitter" or "sour." Chametz represents sin, decay, and human intervention.
      The idea is similar to the stones used to construct the mizbeach (altar). The stones used must be un-hewn, or "as found." If hewn stones are used, the resulting mizbeach is defiled and may not be used for the L_rd's korbanot.

      The essence of chet (sin) is to take matters into one's own hand, to intervene, in an attempt to meet one's own G_d-given needs, drives, or desires, rather than to trust and obey, regardless of outcome. Intervention results in a loss of quietness and rest.
      The solet must be offered without d'vash ( ), without honey, or other supplemental sweetening agent(s). Sweetening agents represent the corruption that comes from the pursuit of pleasure.
      Chametz represents the slow, cumulative process of corruption, from human intervention, while d'vash represents dissipation and waste that results from the pursuit of pleasure. Pleasure is rewarding, in the short term, but profits little in the long term. Man should not be overcome with his own ways, nor with the pursuit of pleasure.
      bible iconSee then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the L_rd is. And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the L_rd, giving thanks always for all things to G_d the Father in the name of our L_rd Y'Shua HaMashiach, submitting to one another in the fear of G_d. (Eph 5:15-21, emphasis and emendation added)
    2. shémen ( ): {pressed} oil

      • Shamán ( ), to shine (from the application of oil, to be shiny)

      • Shaméin ( ): meaning richness, fatness, plumpness, fullness, fruitfulness

      • Sh'monah ( ), sh'moneh ( ): the number or ordinal "eight," representing a surplus, above the perfect, or complete "seven." As such, the number eight has become recognized as the number of Mashiach (Messiah), Who is the Anointed (with oil and the Spirit) of G_d.

      The possible meaning in this context: The over-abundance that comes from patience and endurance through the "pressing" of life, and by way of quiet trust in the Holy One, blessed be He.
      bible iconMy brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith (trust) produces patience (endurance). But let patience (endurance) have its perfect (complete) work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. (Jas 1:2-4, emendation added)
    3. levonáh ( or ): frankincense, from lavan ( ), meaning white, resin or smoke
      Incense often represents the prayers offered to G_d
      bible iconNow when He had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each having a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. (Rev 5:8, emphasis added)
      bible iconTherefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, {and} giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. (1Tim 2:1-2, emphasis added)
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V-G. The Preparation of the Korban Minchah

The korban minchah must be prepared as follows:

  • The minchah was to be bought in various forms: Baked (fluffy, with oil in the dough), grilled (flat like crackers), or fried (like doughnuts), or, if bikkurim (first-fruits), parched heads of grain.

  • Loaves were to be broken up into small pieces, and oil was to be poured upon the pieces.

  • A memorial portion was to be removed from the oil and flour mixture.

    Three-fingers full, called kometz ( ): three-fingers full, against the palm, full, but none may extend outside. The act is called called kemitzah ( )

    Kemitzah was considered to be one of the most difficult of all sacrificial actions.

  • Levonah (frankincense) was to be added to the kometz of flour and oil.

  • Melach haB'rit (salt of the covenant), was to be added before offering.

  • The resulting "memorial portion" was to be converted to smoke (katar) on altar, and so to rise to the Holy One.

  • The remainder of the loaves were kodesh kodashim (most holy), and had to be eaten only in the "Presence" (in the courtyard) by a ceremonially pure kohein (priest)
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V-H. Meditating on the Melach haB'rit (Salt of the Covenant)
  • Melach is preservative against corruption, and so is faithfulness to G_d's covenants with us.

  • Melach, being preservative, is representative of longevity, even expressive of an eternal quality, as even our covenant relationship with the Holy One is eternal.

  • Melach adds flavor, and brings out flavor.
    bible iconYou are the salt of the earth; but if the salt loses its flavor, how shall it be seasoned? It is then good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot by men. (Matt 5:13)

  • Left out of its cultural context, this passage can have an abundance of meanings. Mark includes the context, which adds more value to the various meanings for salt.
    bible iconFor everyone will be seasoned with fire, and every sacrifice will be seasoned with salt. Salt {is} good, but if the salt loses its flavor, how will you season it? Have salt in yourselves, and have peace with one another. (Mk 9:49-50, emphasis added)

  • Here the passage connects the seasoning power of successfully standing the trial by fire, and the salt of the covenant making an offering acceptable. Also, note the presence of peace, or menuchah, in the mix.
    bible iconWalk in wisdom toward those {who are} outside, redeeming the time. {Let} your conversation always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one. (Col 4:5-6, emphasis added)

    In this passage, we see that, how we relate to one-another should be carefully watched over. This is to the degree that, we could be interrupted, at any moment, and what is happening, and/or being said, at that very moment, could be supplemented with the salt of the covenant, and it could be offered as a korban, holy and acceptable to G_d.
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V-I. The Korban Minchah, Fulfilled in Messiah

He Who now, ever lives to make intercession (levonah) for us, has provided the path to quietness and tranquility (menuchah), in the presence of our Creator.

We are unable to add or subtract from what has been provided for us (no chametz nor d'vash). His offering was unleavened by sin and human intervention, and was not defiled by the supplemental sweetening of the dissipating pursuit of pleasure.

The numeric value associated with the Messiah, eight (sh'moneh), and the shemen (oil) of his korban, indicate the fullness, the abundance and richness of what He purchased for us, by way of the great price He paid.

The incense, levonah, represents for us, as we draw near to G_d, in the "minchah mode" of the cross, the sweetness of His intercession for us, and the sweetness of our nearness during times of prayer, in those quiet and tranquil moments at His feet; those times when we behold the beauty of His creation, and perceive the richness of His provision, as well as experience the success, in the opportunity He has provided for us. As He ascended into the "Presence," so do our prayers, and so shall we, in the fulness of time. We cannot hasten it. But it is worth waiting for...


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