Today's Foundations Devotional: The firstfruits of the harvest waved before the Lord
For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. But each
one in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, afterward those who are
Christ’s at His coming.
(1 Corinthians 15:22-23)
The first phase Paul says, as we’ve seen yesterday, is “Christ the firstfruits.” By this phrase Paul compares the resurrection of Christ to the ceremony of presenting the firstfruits of the harvest to the Lord, as ordained for the children of Israel under the law of Moses.
Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: “When you come into the land which I give to you, and reap its harvest, then you shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest. He shall wave the sheaf before the Lord, to be accepted on your behalf; on the day after the Sabbath the priest shall wave it” (Lev. 23:10-11).
This sheaf of the firstfruits waved before the Lord is a picture of Christ coming forth from the dead as the sinner’s representative and as the beginning of a new creation.
Notice how accurate the picture is. The sheaf of the firstfruits was the first complete fruit to rise up out of the seed that had been buried earlier in the earth. Moses told the children of Israel that the priest was to wave this sheaf before the Lord “to be accepted on your behalf...”
In Romans 4:25 Paul tells us that Christ “was delivered up because of our offences, and was raised because of our justification.”
The resurrection of Christ not only vindicated His own righteousness, but it also made it possible for the believer to be reckoned equally righteous with Christ before God.
Furthermore, this sheaf of the firstfruits was to be waved before the Lord “on the day after the Sabbath.” Since the Sabbath was the seventh or last day of the week, the day after the Sabbath was the first day of the week – the day on which Christ did in fact rise from the dead.
Finally, the waving of the firstfruits was an act of worship and of triumph, for the appearing of the firstfruits at the appointed season gave assurance that the rest of the harvest would be gathered safely in. In like manner, the resurrection of Christ gives assurance that all the remaining dead will also in their due season be resurrected.
Thank You, Heavenly Father, that I too may live a life in which I bring my
firstfruits to You as an act of surrender, worship and victory. I pray You
Lord that the harvest of my life may also be safely brought in so that my
life honours Your name. Amen.