And now that I have just slammed the book, let me tell you what it taught me today. It was explaining all the rules for sacrificial offerings in the Old Testament Times. Where and when and how you sacrifice what to atone for what, or to thank God for what. By the time I got to the end of my reading today, I was thinking two things:
- If I lived in Old Testament Times:
- a. I would NEVER leave the altar. Every sin must be counted and atoned.
- b. I wouldn't have any livestock, grain, birds, money left. Every sin must be counted and atoned.
2. What if I offered similar sacrifices today (when I sin)?
- Regarding my point number 1 - It's not that I'm the ultimate sinner, it's easy to sin without noticing right away. One thing you could atone for (in th O.T.) is making oaths-I'm sure I do this all the time.
- Regarding point number 2 - At first I thought, "Wow, that could be a really practical way for me to say I'm sorry for my sins. I could give the church money every time." While I don't think that they would complain, I soon realized, "Duh!!! That is one of the things Jesus Christ came to release us from." Our sacrificial offerings were all made through the body and blood of Jesus. He already atoned for our sins. The simple thing He asks for in exchange is our life: our comitment to follow Him and a friendship and love above all friends and love.
So, even though I've committed to that, somewhere inside me I have this need to make good on the bad things I've done, the sin. Although he has erased it forever, I can't get it out of my head. I can't believe that it could be that simple.
I think of a song (that I love) in which the lyrics say "And I'll never know how much it costs, to see my sins upon the cross. " It's true. I'll never know. I can only notice my sins here and there. I will never recognize what it would be like to have all of them at once tormenting me. Replaying each one in my head. But not only did Jesus carry ALL my sins (past, present, future), He carried ALL the sins of ALL people EVERYwhere and in EVERY time period that was and is and is to come. It is unimaginable. And unbelievable. And truly magnificent. I should remind myself every day that God came to this earth, became man, and died so that I could live forever with Him. I consider the sacrifice He made to be so huge, "huge" can't even describe it. It is beyond comprehension. And He offers it to me at such a dramatic markdown. He values my one life more than I can know. Whoa!
Thank you Lord, for loving me so much that you gave your own son as a sacrifice for me. So that little ol' me could live. And I thank you for reminding me of this sacrifice today. Thank you for the reminder that my sins were erased long before I was even born. I love to wonder at you Lord. Continue to guide me. Give me the courage and the will to tell everybody what you've done for me and that the offer still stands. That you want to give it to them as well. I pray your blessing and direction in my life and the lives of my friends and family and all around me. I love you Lord.