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Bible Commentaries
Leviticus 2

Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New TestamentsSutcliffe's Commentary

Verses 1-16

Leviticus 2:1. When any (Hebrews nephesh) soul; to denote that true religion is seated in the heart. Offer a meat-offering (Hebrews mincha) which Aquila renders, a gift of wheat to the Lord.

Leviticus 2:13. Salt of the covenant must not be lacking, as is often noticed. The rabbins, as well as the primitive christian doctors, seem agreed that salt here signifies incorruption, and the good savour of piety. Salt preserves flesh, and the alkali in limestone ranges will preserve fish; salt is therefore a figure of the fidelity of the promises of God to man.


In the preseding chapter we saw the sinner purged with blood, and permitted to enter the congregation of the Lord: here we find him feasted, as one of the King’s friends. The Lord himself has no need of meat- offerings and drink-offerings: if he were hungry, he would not apply to man, but he wished here to presignify the more excellent food he has provided for the soul. Here are wine and oil, marrow and fatness for the hungry, without money and without price. By enjoining these oblations he previously bound him self, as Lord of nature, to bestow them on man. Hence Israel, and all God’s people might see in these laws, so many promises that their harvests and vintages should never fail.

The meat-offerings were to be free from leaven; and even honey, though sweet in itself, and calculated, as the ancients say, to prolong life, could not be admitted, because it partook of the nature of leaven. We must eat in the presence of God, the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. The sour leaven of factions and parties in the church, spoils the unity of the spirit, and breaks the bonds of peace. In doctrine and discipline, in life and temper we must be simple and upright before the Lord, and being found as little children, we shall be admitted into his kingdom.

All the meat-offerings were to be seasoned with salt: every sacrifice, says our Lord, must be salted with salt, and every man shall be salted with fire, or purified by the fire of affliction. If grace then is to be in our hearts, as salt in the meat-offerings, how holy should we be, how fervent in spirit, and zealous in the Lord’s service! For if the salt have lost its savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast out, and trodden underfoot of men.

The cakes were to be eaten with olive oil, and with incense: the former made them rich, the latter fragrant. There is no food so pleasant as that which we eat in the presence of God; no meat which gives such health to the soul, and joy to the countenance. Oh, how we should pity the poor sinners, whose only food is the news of the day, and the vanities of life.

But the Lord did not forget his priests, who were not allowed vineyards and lands: they were partakers of the altar. Let those engaged in the ministry, and on that account deprived of trades and lands, learn to trust in the Lord; he will give them food and raiment, and by some means provide for their children. Nor let them murmur and faint in the time of difficulty, but be thankful that God has counted them faithful, and put them into the ministry.

Bibliographical Information
Sutcliffe, Joseph. "Commentary on Leviticus 2". Sutcliffe's Commentary on the Old and New Testaments. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jsc/leviticus-2.html. 1835.
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