The Table of Shewbread – Part 2
Aaron,” the young boy heard the familiar Voice that had become his favorite voice in the whole world, “which animals do you like the best?”
Aaron didn’t have to think much. He really, really liked horses. He also liked lions, dolphins, and eagles, but horses were his absolute favorite. He enjoyed talking about animals and knew the Lord came to him this time to talk about them.
“Well, let Me tell you, My friend, how I view the animals. I separate them into two categories: clean and unclean. I taught the children of Israel to eat only the clean animals so that they, as well as you, might learn a spiritual principle. Remember, first the natural, then the spiritual, and finally, the fullness, which is both natural and spiritual together.”
“Lord,” Aaron asked, “which animals then are the clean ones?”
“Here you are, Aaron,” the Lord said, “read it for yourself.” With these words the Lord handed Aaron the big Bible that Aaron had already held in his hands before. He began to read where the Lord opened it for him – in Leviticus 11:1, And the LORD spake unto Moses and to Aaron, saying unto them, Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, These are the beasts which ye shall eat among all the beasts that are on the earth. Whatsoever parteth the hoof, and is clovenfooted, and cheweth the cud, among the beasts, that shall ye eat.
Aaron remembered the science lesson he had recently had in school in which he learned about animals that have several stomachs and therefore they chew the cud really well (they even bring the food back from their bellies into their mouth and rechew).
“Lord, does it mean that a cow is a clean animal?” Aaron wanted to know.
“Yes, Aaron, it is, but a camel, even though it chews the cud, is not clean, because it does not have a divided hoof,” the Lord explained. “Another example of an unclean animal would be the swine: it has a divided hoof but doesn’t chew the cud.”
Aaron never thought about the animals this way and found it very interesting. The Lord continued to explain to him that on the spiritual level, the animals who chew the cud represent Christians who hear the Word and meditate on it in their mind until the Word becomes part of them and their nature is changed by it. Those who part the hoof are those who walk in the word they preach. One part of the hoof shows the Spirit and the other one the Word. It means that these Christians walk by the Spirit but have the written Word balancing them, as this is how God has ordained it.
Then the Lord continued by telling Aaron about fish. Aaron learned that the clean fish has scales and fins. The scales shield the fish from the water, so the fish is not a part of the water. Such a fish is a dry fish in a wet environment. A clean fish thus represents the Christian who is in the world (the water) but is not of the world. Also, a clean fish beats the water with its fins to propel itself. It signifies the Christian overcoming the world, unlike the unclean fish which goes with the flow of the water (the world), coiling and uncoiling like a serpent, to propel itself onward.
Finally, the Lord explained to Aaron what He taught the children of Israel about birds and flying creeping things.
“You see, Aaron,” He said, “there are four types of unclean birds and flying creeping things that I don’t want you to eat. They are spiritual and not earthbound because they overcome the laws of gravity and fly above the ground (the natural). They are the following:
1. The predators: These birds snatch live creatures from the air. They are a type of spiritual men who preach the gospel, not because they are doing the will of the Father, but because they have other ambitions. For example, they keep the people in darkness so that they can manipulate them and take their money. Don’t eat the bread they offer you!
2. The scavengers: These birds feed on dead things. The people who feed on dead things cannot bring forth life and therefore, we are not to have any fellowship with them. Churches are divided in many instances because of the dead word which is preached among them. But, when you begin to feed on Christ, you will automatically come together under one head (God) and become one. The living food is such that it changes your nature to the nature of Christ so that your mind is changed to the mind of Christ, your emotions to the emotions of Christ, your will to the will of Christ, and your desires to the desires of Christ.
3. The birds of night: These birds can see well at night but not during the day. They represent people who are able to operate with great vision in the things of carnality and evil spirits, but are not able to see the smallest things in the light of the gospel of Jesus Christ. However, God is light and the sons of God are able to see in the light.
4. Flying creeping things (they are not necessarily birds but they can fly): They represent Christians who should be spiritual but are not. They should fly as other birds but cannot defy the law of gravity and rise above the earth for a longer period of time. They remain carnal. Yet, there are a few flying creeping things that you may eat: the locust, the bald locust, the beetle, and the grasshopper. The reason is that even though they are not able to stay aloft in God or in the things of the Spirit, they will be able to survive spiritually when they are absorbed into the Body of Christ, when they are surrounded by other believers.
“Aaron,” the Lord continued very seriously, “you have to remember that you become one with that which you eat. The food you eat, whether natural or spiritual, becomes part of you so you have to be very careful in what you eat that you would not get sick. When you eat the right spiritual food at the Table of Shewbread, you will have the energy to do My will. Otherwise, you will be weak, tired and apathetic. Remember it says in Luke 4:4, …man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.” With these words, the Lord departed.
Aaron was deep in thought. He knew he had to read all of Leviticus 11 again and think about what the Lord shared with him so that he would understand it well. Also, he remembered there was one more thing the Lord promised to share with him about the Table of Shewbread – why there are twelve loaves of bread laid on the table. He was sure the Lord would come back soon to tell him. By now he had learned that whatever the Lord says, He will do.
Answer the following questions to see how well you understood this chapter:
1. What type of beasts are clean animals?
2. What does chew the cud and part the hoof represent?
3. How do you recognize clean fish and what do they represent?
4. Which four groups of unclean birds and flying creeping things does the Bible talk about?
5. Can you tell the meaning of all four groups of the unclean birds and flying creeping things?
6. Why do we have to eat the right spiritual food?
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