Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good!Psalm 34:8
Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!
The Lord designed us with five senses: sight, sound, smell, taste and touch. All of which, if we are blessed to have them all, are gifts. All are beneficial for existence.
I am often reminded at work of protecting my hearing and despite my pushing back against authority, I do, sometimes, get the correct message. Because I do know, “Faith comes through hearing” (Romans 10:17).
Our senses trigger memories. A song from the past sparks a memory of a person or a joyous time. A fragrance may remind one of a lady’s perfume or a gentleman’s cologne. How often have you longed for the taste of a pastry only Grandma could bake? A summer sunset can be quite relaxing and there is nothing like the cool side of a pillow.
So what does it mean to, “taste and see that the Lord is good”? (Psalm 34:8)
There are many passages in the bible which call on the senses. In Leviticus chapter one, burnt and food offerings have an “aroma pleasing to the Lord”. Obviously, we want what we give to God to be pleasing to Him and God does command the best. In Leviticus 1:2-3, God commands the burnt offering to be male, “without blemish”, from livestock or flock.
We no longer need burnt offerings. Burnt offerings were only temporary in effect. So, for the Ancients, burnt offerings were continuous, because sin is continuous. But because God so loved the world, He gave His only Son (John 3:16). A perfect sacrifice, “without blemish”, once and for all! Because of which, the burnt offering is no longer required.
The aroma from God’s best gift is pleasing to all who believe. And, as Christians who worship in the Anglican Tradition, we are commanded by Jesus to remember Him and his work, by tasting Him, through the Holy Bread (His body) and the Holy Wine (His blood).
Consider what Saint Paul says in 2 Corinthians 2:14-17: “…through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere” and “For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life.” Paul eloquently articulates the Great Commission here. Imagine, in being ministers for Christ, we have become the aroma and fragrance of the perfect sacrifice!
No pressure here.
And there should be no pressure, because we have a “letter of recommendation, written on our hearts” and “written not with ink but with the Spirit of the Living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts. Such is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God.” (2 Corinthians 3:1-4)
Let us go forth in joy and confidence as messengers of Christ our King.
The peace of the Lord be with you all,
Deacon Doug Stomberg