One Tuesday evening, I had the privilege to speak with the Church Youth group on the subject “What the Oil Symbolizes in Anointing“. We have been spending a few weeks learning about the meaning of the anointing for young believers.
So far we have derived that Anointing is when God’s empowers a believer for a purpose in a given season. We believe that God created each one of us for an ordained purpose and for that purpose to be fulfilled and bring glory to God, we need God’s anointing. A God-ordained purpose for a person’s life cannot fully manifest left alone to the person’s own will, strength or even resources. It is imperative that every believer receives God’s anointing to fulfill God’s ordained purpose in their life.
The Anointing of Jesus Christ
“The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me [a]to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are [b]oppressed; – Luke 4:18
Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is the anointed one, we look to Christ to live our lives for God’s glory. We imitate Christ as by this we fulfill God’s word and will. In the same way, as Jesus Christ was anointed for the purpose He came on earth to serve (Luke 4:18), we also ought to seek God’s anointing to be able to fully serve the calling upon our lives.
Our Savior received the empowering grace of God to bring liberation to all of us from the oppression of the enemy. By reason of the anointing, Jesus Christ overcame the enemy and now we are saved from sin and eternal damnation through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Here, I want to share some highlights from my study on the Believers’ anointing. In the Old Testament, we find that people were anointed with oil to serve in specific roles like a priest, king or prophet. The question that comes up is why the use of oil? It is must be important for it to be used especially to enlist someone in an important role to serve God and God’s people.
The Significance of the Oil in Anointing
The Oil represents the Holy Spirit
In the old Testaments, they used a lot of symbols and artifacts to cast the shadow of the New Testament. For example, the tabernacle (earthly sanctuary) represented the heavenly sanctuary. The high priest who offered sacrifices to cleanse the people of their sins was a shadow of the ultimate high priest Jesus Christ who entered the most holy place in the heavenly sanctuary and obtained eternal redemption (Hebrews 9). Similarly, when the oil is poured on someone being anointed it is the coming upon of the Holy Spirit who endues the person with power for the purpose to be fulfilled. Jesus Christ told his followers in Acts 1:8 “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you shall be [a]witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” The Oil upon the head reminds the believer of the Holy Spirit upon him or her who endues him or her with power for the work ahead.
The Oil sets the Anointed Apart
When the oil is poured on the head, the anointed is now set apart for God’s purpose. Their life ought to be in alignment with God’s will and word. In the house of Jesse, among all the brothers, the oil was poured on David’s head. David was no longer deemed as a shepherd but one who has been chosen to serve God as a king of Israel. The Spirit of God upon your life sets you apart for the specific purpose God has ordained for your life. As the Spirit of God is upon you, He guides, teaches, comfort you throughout your journey in life. As long as you yield yourself to God, His gracious guidance will lead you in your life. Being set apart also means fulfilling the task with exceptional touch of God. You do not operate not merely out of your gifting or talents but now your purpose has the presence of God all over it.
The Oil protects the Anointed
By reason of the Spirit of God being upon you as an anointed person, you are shielded from the attacks of the enemy (1 Chronicles 16:22). The practice of anointing with oil originated from the shepherds who poured oil in the ears and on the wool of the sheep to prevent parasite attack. This anointing of the sheep made it difficult for the parasites (lice, fleas, etc) to stay on them as they will just slide off. Based on this, anointing with oil became symbolic for protection. The Spirit of God upon the believer equips the believer to extinguish the fiery darts of the enemy. The Spirit of God helps you in prayer, studying God word, doing God’s will which are important weapons that prevents the attack of the the enemy.
In all the oil has no power in itself, it is just a representation of what God is doing in the life of the anointed. At the end of it all, when God calls you to fulfill a purpose, it is dependent on you for the anointing to be operative. You must first yield yourself to God. Those who were anointed with oil will yield by taking the humble posture of kneeling. It is only then that the oil can be poured upon them. If we do not yield our lives to God, the anointing will not come upon us. Most importantly, our fellowship with God must remain grounded as anointed ones, it is through this fellowship that we recieve the grace and power to serve God faithfully.
For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him. – 2 Chronicles 16:9a
Be blessed Beloved as you yield your life to be God’s anointed. Always remember that Jesus Christ dearly loves you.