2 BITE-SIZE SOULFOOD #9

ALL ABOUT FIRSTFRUITS

Long Post ahead, but very Rewarding!
Bible Verse: “But remember the LORD your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth.” (Deuteronomy 8: 18).
Main Truth: When you put God first, blessings will follow you – earthly and heavenly.

A. INTRODUCTION
Firstfruits is the first principle that God told the Israelites to test, to train and to bless them materially or financially.
It started 3,500 years ago during the time of Joshua when God gave the Israelites the Promised Land – a land flowing with milk and honey, of productive vineyards and of vast fields of barley/wheat, that the Israelites never planted nor cultivated, but they would be harvesting the fruits thereof.
To date, in Israel, the Feast of Firstfruits is still being celebrated yearly. And despite their unbelief in Jesus Christ, God is blessing Israel militarily (Peace), technologically (Protection) and economically (Provision).
Why? Because God is faithful and true to his Word – even on Firstfruits.
Now, would you like to be blessed by God financially?

B. OLD TESTAMENT LESSONS
1. What is Firstfruits?
Firstfruits is the initial harvest from the land.
“Take some of the firstfruits (grapes) of all that you produce frrom the soil of the land the LORD your God is giving you and put them in a basket.” (Deuteronomy 26: 2).
Firstfruits >> Grapes >> Wine >> Blood of Sacrifice >> Jesus Christ
“When you enter the land I am going to give you and reap its harvest, bring to the priest a sheaf of the first grain (barley) you harvest. He is to wave the sheaf to the LORD.” (Leviticus 23: 10-11).
Firstfruits >> Barley >> Bread >> Bread of Life >> Jesus Christ
2. Who will bring the Firstfruits?
All or each and every Israelite family
3. Where to bring the Firstfruits?
God’s Temple – a mobile Worship Center
4. When to bring the Firstfruits?
At the beginning of the barley harvest – or on the first month of the Jewish Calendar (March-April)
5. How much or how many is the Firstfruits? – Just a token.
Basket of Grapes to be waved in the air
Sheaf of Barley to be waved in the air
6. Why bring the Firstfruits?
Initially, to trust God as their Provider, obey his Word on Firstfruits, and the promised blessing for the Believer is bountiful harvest.
Eventually, the Firstfruits become thanksgiving to God for the previous year’s bountiful harvest, and trusting and obeying God for a new bountiful harvest for the new year.
7. To whom the Firstfruits is brought and given?
To God belongs the Firstfruits.
And God gave the Firstfruits to the High Priest. “All the LORD’s Firstfruits that they bring to the LORD will be yours.” (Numbers 18: 13).
The High Priest is the Israelite’s representative to God. Once a year, he offers a scapegoat to transfer and take away the Israelite’s sins for 1 year. And he offers the blood of the sacrificial goat in God’s Temple to cover/atone for the sins of the Israelites for 1 year also.
8. What are the results of trust in God and obedience to his Word on Firstfruits?
Provision (ample rains, sunshine and fertile soil for bountiful harvest)
Protection (from pests, locusts and thieves)
Peace (no wars for sustained prosperity) for the Israelites

C. NEW TESTAMENT APPLICATION
Heavenly/SPIRITUAL BLESSING
The Son of God (Jesus Christ) became Son of Man, so that sons and daughters of men can become sons and daughters of God. (John 1: 12-13).
Jesus Christ is the Firstfruits of the Resurrection (1 Corinthians 15: 20) and He has ascended back to Heaven.
If the part of the dough offered as firstfruits (Jesus Christ) is holy, then the whole batch (All Believers in Christ) is holy. (Romans 11: 16).
When you repent (turn from sin to God) and believe in Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord (John 3: 16), then like Jesus Christ, you will also surely (100%) be resurrected someday and ascend to Heaven – body, soul amd spirit. (1 Corinthians 15: 23, 50-54).
Thus, in terns of spiritual and eternal blessings, you, a Believer in Jesus Christ, are far better off than most Israelites today.
But, you also want financial blessings from the LORD, right?
Earthly/FINANCIAL BLESSING
1. What Firstfruits to bring now?
We are in the Agricultural/Industrial/Information Age.
For the Agricultural Sector – it is first produce from the land like rice, mangoes, vegetables
For the Working Class – Salaries, Commission, Fees
For Business Owners – Income, Dividend
2. Who will bring the Firstfruits?
ACCF Cubao Families
3. Where to bring you Firstfruits (in money equivalent)?
ACCF Cubao Church where you’re being fed with God’s Word as spiritual food.
You can deposit your Firstfruits (through GCash, PayMaya, check or cash deposit) at ACCI BPI account number 0121035502.
4. When to bring your Firstfruits?
During the start or first week of the year 2021 – when you gained some salaries, commissions, income and dividends.
5. How much is your family’s Firstfruits? Just a token.
Agricultural Sector – a kilo of rice, a basket of mangoes or vegetables
For Workers – 1 day salary at most
For Businessmen – 1 day Income at most
But, when in the past you have tasted the goodness and faithfulness of God on Firstfruits, then by thansgiving and faith, you can increase the amount of your family’s Firstfruits for the new year.
6. Why bring your Firstfruits to God?
Because you trust in God and obey his Word on Firstfruits. Firstfruits is God’s basic principle to bless you financially.
7. To whom the Firstfruits is brought and given?
The Firstfruits belong to God and He gives these to his High Priest.
In the New Testament, Jesus Christ is the High Priest forever. (Hebrews 7: 20-22).
But Jesus Christ is in Heaven, so He entrusted the Firstfruits to His Bride, the Church or Believers in Jesus Christ. (Please remember that besides God and His angels, the only 2 things that will last for all eternity in Heaven are God’s Word and Souls of human beings).
God’s primary business here on earth is to win souls of men and women for his Kingdom. And God uses His Church – like the ACCF Cubao Church – as His head, heart, hands, and feet to achieve His purpose.
Hence, the proper stewardship of ACCF Cubao Members’ Firstfruits belongs to ACCF Cubao’s Pastor and Elders – primarily to proclaim God’s Word and to win souls of human beings for God’s Kingdom. (Acts 6).
8. What are the results when your family obeys God’s Word on Firstfruits?
Provision – Bountiful harvest for the year 2021 in terms of bigger salaries, commissions, fees, income, and dividends.
Protection – No lay-offs, but promotion, good health, no unfair competition, no accidents, no calamities, no diseases
Peace – Peace with God, yourself and fellowmen, Industrial peace, no Government intervention, no wars

D. CONCLUSION
By His grace through faith, God is the Source or Provider of our wealth.
Since Jesus Christ is the Firstfruits of the Resurrection, this means that all Believers in Christ are 100% assured that they will also be resurrected someday, and will be with God in Heaven, forever.
But then, God desires to bless his people – Believers in Christ – financially slso while they still live here on earth.
And Firstfruits is God’s primary principle to test and to train Believers in order for them to trust him and obey his Word, so that the LORD can bless them financially or materially.
So, why not trust God and obey his Word on Firstfruits now?
Therefore, when you put God first – even in Firstfruits, Blessings will surely follow you – heavenly and earthly.
To God be all glory!

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