For Fellowship with God

In the tabernacle and temple, God’s people Isra’el voluntarily brought fellowship offerings to
God when they wanted to express gratitude to Him and establish fellowship between God and
themselves.  Before coming into ADONAI’s (the LORD’s) presence to worship Him, we too
must establish or reestablish fellowship with Him.  In Matthew 5:23-24, Yeshua (Jesus) says,
“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has
something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar.  First go and be reconciled to
your brother; then come and offer your gift.”  When husbands and wives hurt each other’s
feelings, resolution of the matter and reconciliation are often required before the couple can
come together to address other household matters.  How much more, then, do we need to
restore our relationship with God if we know He has something against us?  We should have
very personal and intimate relationships with the Father, and in that intimacy, we undoubtedly
disappoint Him.  Sometimes we skip our time with Him.  Other times we rush through it.  Still
other times we are focused on other things rather than Him.  No matter what the offense we
have committed in our personal relationship with ADONAI (the LORD), those offenses require
a confession and apology; then, we must allow Him to restore the relationship BEFORE we
move on to worshipping Him.

As detailed in Leviticus chapter 3, there are three types of fellowship offerings:  offerings from
the herd, offerings from the flock, and though goats are from the flock, they are mentioned
separately.  In the fellowship offerings, God focuses more on the fat of the animal being
sacrificed than in any of the other sacrifices listed in Leviticus.  In fact, the fat is so important
that there is no offering of birds for a fellowship offering.  Yet for most of the other types of
offerings, an offering from the herd or flock could be substituted for an offering of birds.  
Birds, however, do not have enough fat to be sacrificed like the animals from the herd and
flock.  Hence, they are not an acceptable fellowship offering.

The fat of the fellowship offerings is important because it represents the unnecessary “fluff’
and “fillers” in our relationships with God.  When we come before Him, we often bring offerings
with “fat” on them.  Showy songs and long prayers meant to attract attention (see Matt. 6:5-8)
are considered fat.  Fat includes, but is not limited to, unnecessary words, religious ritual,
piety, performance, people pleasing and other preoccupations that do not concern God.  He
desires personal and intimate fellowship with His people.  Though the manner in which we
approach Him is very important, the dictates of religion are not.  He wants to guide our
fellowship, specifically, so it may be different each time.  We should approach Him in truth,
laying everything out before Him.  He wants honesty and pure submission.  Anything that will
stand in the way of a truly intimate encounter with ADONAI (the LORD) is considered fat and
should be burned away.

God knows that when we come before Him, we bring all of this with us, and He accepts us this
way.  However, when we desire true fellowship, we must request that He reveal every barrier
that keeps us from truly communing with Him.  As He reveals the barriers (or fat), we must lay
them before Him so that He can burn them up.  As commanded in Leviticus 3:16, “all the fat is
the LORD’s”, so we must leave it there and not pick it up again, being nourished only by the
meat of our pure fellowship with the only God who can feed us.