The Prophetic Meanings Behind Different Smells
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The Prophetic Meanings Behind Different Smells

Have you ever noticed a certain smell and felt God speaking to you through it? Smells can be an important way that God uses to speak to His children. In this blog post, we’ll explore the prophetic meanings behind different smells that you may encounter in your daily life.


Smells have a powerful way of triggering memories and emotions within us. Likewise, God can use smells to trigger prophetic insights and meanings. There are many examples in the Bible where God’s presence was associated with a particular aroma.

In 2 Corinthians 2:14-16, Paul says that Christians are the aroma of Christ:

Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place. For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. To the one we are the aroma of death leading to death, and to the other the aroma of life leading to life.

Here, Paul is saying that Christians carry the sweet smell of Christ to those around them. To some, it’s a fragrance that leads to life. To others, it’s a stench that leads to death.

This passage shows that different smells can have deep spiritual symbolism. God wants our lives to be a sweet-smelling aroma that draws people to Christ.

In this blog post, you’ll learn about common smells that may have prophetic meanings in your life. Pay attention to the different scents you encounter each day. God may be speaking to you!

Here are some key takeaways:

  • Smells can be an important prophetic tool that God uses to speak to His children.
  • There are many examples in the Bible where smells had symbolic meaning.
  • Your life is called to be a sweet-smelling fragrance that represents Christ to the world.
  • Pay attention to the scents you encounter each day, as God may be speaking to you.
  • This blog will explore common smells that often have prophetic meanings.

Let’s dive in and explore the prophetic meanings behind different smells.

1. Flowers

Have you ever noticed the sweet scent of flowers wafting through the air? Flower scents, especially roses, are common prophetic smells from the Lord.

In Scripture, flowers and floral scents symbolize beauty, growth, life, and the sweet aroma of Christ:

I am the rose of Sharon, the lily of the valleys (Song of Solomon 2:1 NKJV).

His cheeks are like a bed of spices, Banks of scented herbs. His lips are lilies, Dripping liquid myrrh (Song of Solomon 5:13 NKJV).

And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma (Ephesians 5:2 NKJV).

When you smell the sweet scent of flowers, it may indicate the Lord speaking these prophetic meanings into your life:

Beauty: The Lord is highlighting His work of making beauty out of the ashes in your life. He sees you as His beautiful rose!

Growth: New growth is blossoming in your life, relationships, or calling. God is nurturing growth in you.

Life: The life of Christ is blossoming within you. Jesus said “I am the resurrection and the life” (John 11:25). Fragrant flowers speak of abundant life.

Sweet Aroma of Christ: You carry the sweet perfume of Jesus’ presence. When others encounter you, they smell the fragrance of Christ’s love.

The next time you smell the fragrance of flowers, pause and ask God if He is speaking any of these prophetic meanings into your life.

2. Cinnamon and Spices

Warm cinnamon and spice scents are mentioned frequently in the Bible. They were used in the anointing oil recipe that consecrated priests:

Moreover the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: “Take sweet spices, stacte and onycha and galbanum, and pure frankincense … And you shall make of these an oil of holy ointment … With it you shall anoint the tabernacle of meeting and the ark of the Testimony (Exodus 30:22-26 NKJV).

When you smell cinnamon or sweet baking spices, God may be signaling the following:

Anointing: The Lord is releasing a fresh anointing and consecration over your life. You are being set apart for kingdom purposes.

Presence: You are sensing the tangible presence of the Holy Spirit, referred to in Scripture as the oil of gladness:

You love righteousness and hate wickedness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness more than Your companions (Psalm 45:7 NKJV).

Remembrance: Smelling again your grandma’s cinnamon rolls brings back fond memories. God may be highlighting pleasant memories He wants you to reflect on.

Romance: The Song of Solomon refers to cinnamon in romantic contexts. Smelling cinnamon may speak of a strengthening of romance in your marriage.

Pay attention when you notice the scent of cinnamon, as God may be activate these prophetic meanings for you.

3. Coffee

For many of us, walking into a coffee shop and smelling freshly brewed coffee awakens our senses. Coffee aromas can be prophetic too.

In the Bible, scents were often linked to sacrifices and offerings given to God:

Then Noah built an altar to the Lord … and offered burnt offerings on the altar. And the Lord smelled a soothing aroma (Genesis 8:20-21 NKJV).

Like a sacrifice of worship, the smell of coffee rising to heaven can speak of devotion and prayer to God:

  • Your daily coffee is a fragrant offering of devotion. As you sip, turn it into prayer.

Coffee smells may also signal:

  • Energy: God is refocusing your attention and giving you renewed energy for His purposes.
  • Focus: Coffee’s rich aroma brings clarity of thought. God may be strengthening your mental focus.
  • Relationship: Coffee with a friend makes for quality bonding time. God desires you to value your friendships.

As you go about your day, pay attention when you smell coffee. God may be speaking through coffee aromas in your life.

4. Lemons

The sharp, citrusy smell of lemons is hard to miss! Lemon scents can have the following prophetic meanings:

Freshness: God may be signaling a season of refreshment, revival, and renewal in your life. New beginnings and fresh starts.

Behold, I will do a new thing, now it shall spring forth; shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness and rivers in the desert (Isaiah 43:19 NKJV).

Energy: Lemons are known to boost energy and uplift mood. God may be decreeing increased energy, joy, and vitality over your life.

Focus: Lemons are known to boost concentration. Their scent can speak of sharper mental clarity and focus from the Lord.

Cleansing: Lemons have an antiseptic, cleansing quality. Smelling lemons may signal that God is cleansing negative influences from your life.

The next time you catch the smell of citrus, recognize it as a prophetic sign for freshness and new beginnings in Christ.

5. Pine

The outdoorsy smell of pine signals the prophetic meanings of renewal and everlasting life.

In Scripture, pine wood was used to build Solomon’s temple and God’s dwelling place. The smell of pine brings to mind God’s presence:

And the house, when it was being built, was built of stone finished at the quarry, so that no hammer or chisel or any iron tool was heard in the house while it was being built…The inner sanctuary was twenty cubits long, twenty cubits wide, and twenty cubits high, and he overlaid it with pure gold. He also overlaid the altar of cedar (1 Kings 6:7, 20 NKJV).

When you smell pine, it may speak of:

  • God’s presence manifesting in your midst, like the temple of God.
  • Stability as you build your life on Christ the solid rock. Pine speaks of rootedness.
  • Renewal as you daily experience the new mercies of God. Pine trees stay green year-round.
  • Everlasting life, as promised by God’s word:

Blessed are those who do His commandments, that they may have the right to the tree of life (Revelation 22:14 NKJV).

Thank God next time you smell pine. It likely signals renewal, life, and His abiding presence.

6. Roses

We’ve already discussed the prophetic meanings behind rose floral scents. In particular, red roses signal deep romance.

The Shulamite woman in the Song of Solomon frequently mentions the scent of roses in relation to her Beloved:

A bundle of myrrh is my beloved to me, that lies all night between my breasts. My beloved is to me a cluster of henna blooms in the vineyards of En Gedi (Song of Solomon 1:13-14 NKJV).

When you notice the smell of roses, it may speak of:

  • Romance – God is highlighting the romance between Christ and you, His bride.
  • Intimacy – You are walking in deeper spiritual intimacy with the Lord.
  • Beauty – God sees you as His beautiful rose.
  • Love – You are rooted in God’s passionate, romantic love for you.

Smelling roses is a heavenly reminder of how Jesus cherishes you as His bride. Thank Him for lavishing you with affection.

7. Burnt Toast

No one particularly enjoys the smell of burnt toast. But even unpleasant smells can have spiritual significance.

In Scripture, burnt offerings were given as atonement for sin:

Then he shall take the lamb or the kid with the guilt offering, and the priest shall lay his hand on its head and kill it as a guilt offering in the place where they kill the burnt offering (Leviticus 14:25 NKJV).

While Jesus’ sacrifice fully atoned for sin, unpleasant smells can prompt us to repent and get right with God:

  • Repentance – Foul odors remind us that sin leads to death. Allow conviction to lead to repentance.
  • Spiritual housecleaning – Bad smells means something is not right and needs to be cleaned up and removed from your life.
  • Opportunity to forgive – Release anyone who has hurt or offended you.

While foul smells aren’t enjoyable, allow them to be a catalyst for cleansing your heart and drawing closer to Jesus.

8. Peppermint

Peppermint is known for its ability to boost energy, mental clarity, and uplift the emotions. Throughout Scripture, the mint family symbolized faithfulness and diligence:

These you may eat of all that are in the water: whatever in the water has fins and scales…and the hyssop (Leviticus 11:9-10 NKJV). [Hyssop is an aromatic mint herb].

When smelling peppermint or mint, it can prophetically signal:

  • Energy – The Lord is renewing your strength and reviving your weary soul.
  • Focus – God is bringing increased mental alertness and focus to your mind.
  • Faithfulness – The Lord is pleased with your diligence and faithfulness.
  • Emotional healing – Peppermint brings release of emotional pain and greater inner joy.

The next time you drink your peppermint tea or sniff an essential oil, receive it as a prophetic sign of renewal from the Lord.

9. Rain/Petrichor

There’s nothing quite like the refreshing scent earth releases after a cleansing rain. In Scripture, rain symbolizes God’s blessing and presence:

Let the earth open, let salvation bear fruit, and righteousness spring up with it. I, the LORD, have created it (Isaiah 45:8 NKJV).

Petrichor, the scent of rain, has the prophetic meanings of:

  • Outpouring – The Lord is pouring out His fresh presence and Spirit like the rain.
  • Renewal – God is renewing and reviving the garden of your soul. Beauty arises after the rain.
  • Cleansing – The Lord has washed away impurities and refreshed you through His word.
  • Fruitfulness – Just as the rain nourishes plants, God’s presence waters you to bear fruit.

The next time you smell the sweet petrichor scent after a rain, breathe it in as a prophetic act. Soak in God’s presence and the renewal He brings.

10. Vanilla

Vanilla has a warm, comforting scent that is connected to feelings of nostalgia and childhood memories. In the same way, the Lord uses this soothing fragrance to speak identity and belonging:

All your children shall be taught by the Lord, and great shall be the peace of your children (Isaiah 54:13).

When noticing the smell of sweet vanilla, it can indicate these prophetic meanings:

  • Identity – You are God’s beloved child. You belong to Him.
  • Comfort – Allow Jesus to wrap His arms around you with nurture and comfort.
  • Childlike joy – Recapture the simple wonders of childlike faith and trust.
  • Nostalgia – Cherish good memories from your past as gifts from God.

Isn’t it amazing how God can speak through something as simple as a pleasant vanilla fragrance? Rest in His sweet presence.


Smells truly do have prophetic significance if we have eyes to see and ears to hear. God’s sweet aroma is meant to permeate our lives through Christ:

But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place (2 Corinthians 2:14).

Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to attune you to the prophetic meanings behind smells in your daily life. When a scent catches your attention, pause to ask God if He is speaking something specific for you to hear.

May your life release the sweet perfume of God’s presence everywhere you go. You are a beautiful fragrance representing Christ to the world around you. Walk in this identity with grace and confidence today!

Pastor Duke Taber
Pastor Duke Taber

Pastor Duke Taber

All articles have been written or reviewed by Pastor Duke Taber.
Pastor Duke Taber is an alumnus of Life Pacific University and Multnomah Biblical Seminary.
He has been in pastoral ministry since 1988.
Today he is the owner and managing editor of 3 successful Christian websites that support missionaries around the world.
He is currently starting a brand new church in Mesquite NV called Mesquite Worship Center, a Non-Denominational Spirit Filled Christian church in Mesquite Nevada.