Reflections: Jesus as the Wave Sheaf

The wave sheaf was waved by the priest on the 1st day of the week during the DUB.

During the Days of Unleavened Bread, a special ceremony occurred on the “morrow after the Sabbath” (Lev 23:9-11). A sheaf of the firstfruits was cut, and then it was waved by the priest before God. No one was to eat of the early harvest until the ceremony took place (v14). What is the symbolism of this act?

You probably know the symbolism of Israel leaving Egypt. By the blood of the Passover Lamb, we are freed from spiritual slavery to sin. We come out of sin, but Satan would chase after us if God allowed him to. We put all leaven out of our homes for 7 days, symbolizing the rooting out of sin in our lives.

The Passover symbolizes Christ’s death and shedding of blood. The wave sheaf points to Christ as the firstfruits. He literally was the first born of God. The wave sheaf was waved to be accepted by God. Likewise, we see that Christ ascended to Heaven momentarily and returned to earth for 40 days to spend time with the disciples prior to Pentecost.

In Matthew’s account, we see that the women came to the tomb to be told by angels that Jesus had risen. They rushed back to tell the eleven, but then Jesus met them along the way (Mt 28:9). Notice that they held His feet and worshiped Him.

What Matthew leaves out is that Mary Magdalene was likely the 1st to the tomb (Jn 20:1). Later, she was crying because she didn’t know what had happened to Jesus’ body. Jesus appears to her, but she believes Him to be the gardner. She doesn’t recognize Him.

Jesus saith unto her, Mary. She turned herself, and saith unto him, Rabboni; which is to say, Master.

Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she had seen the LORD, and that he had spoken these things unto her.

~ Jn 20:16-18

So, Mary went to tell the disciples about Jesus at least twice. Apparently, she was alone when she saw Jesus, Who then said to not touch Him. Why? “For I am not yet ascended to my Father.”

Jesus had not yet presented Himself to God the Father! He had not yet fulfilled the meaning of the wave sheaf offering. Yet, later, He meets the women along the road and allows them to grasp Him in worship. Obviously, He had now ascended to the Father and returned, thus fulfilling the wave sheaf offering.

Another interesting point is that the wave sheaf was then used to create 2 loaves of leavened bread for Pentecost. Yes, you read that right. The loaves were leavened. Why? They had a sin nature to them. Yet, they were also made of the substance of the firstfruits, the wave sheaf offering. The yeast in it was killed in the baking process, obviously (trial by fire, eh?). The 2 loaves themselves were waved before God on Pentecost (Lev 23:16-17)! Notice they are also called “firstfruits”! This can be nothing other than the Church. 2 loaves represent the OT Church and the NT Church. Remember, Pentecost was the beginning of the NT Church!

It is Jesus’ nature that makes us into the Church.

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