“Take also for yourself the finest of spices: of flowing myrrh five hundred shekels, and of fragrant cinnamon half as much, two hundred and fifty, and of fragrant cane two hundred and fifty, and of cassia five hundred, according to the shekel of the sanctuary, and of olive oil a hin. You shall make of these a holy anointing oil, a perfume mixture, the work of a perfumer; it shall be a holy anointing oil.”
From these Biblical reference to essential oils we can learn that the oils of the Bible were used for anointing objects and people to set them apart as sacred. In Exodus 30 God even gives the recipe for the holy anointing oil, using fragrant oils and olive oil. It was forbidden for anyone but the priests to use this recipe. The priests were the leaders for many activities including leading worship, receiving of offerings, performing the sacrifices, prayers, spiritual counselors, they listened to confessions, they were enforcers of the law and they were responsible for certain medical diagnoses and treatments which included inspecting people who had been healed of contagious diseases. They were also responsible for maintaining the Tabernacle or temple.
Many people believe that Moses used the holy anointing oil to protect the Israelites from a plague. Modern science shows that these essential oils contain either immune-stimulating or antiviral compounds or both, which may explain why God chose these healing oils to use in the holy anointing oil recipe.
But what does that mean for us today? Does that leave us out on a limb?
“For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said ‘I will dwell in them and walk among them and I will be their God and they shall be my people.’”
2 Corinthians 6:16
“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own.”
So then it is our responsibility as Christians to treat our bodies as a holy temple. Have you ever read in the Bible the detailed description of how the Tabernacle with its furniture and curtains were to be made? God wanted only the very best for His dwelling place. It is our duty to keep our bodies in the best possible condition and to use the tools that He put on this earth. One tool is good nutritious food and another is healing plants, which can be used in the form of essential oils.