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Sacrifice

Leviticus 4:32-35 – “And if he bring a lamb for a sin offering, he shall bring it a female without blemish.And he shall lay his hand upon the head of the sin offering, and slay it for a sin offering in the place where they kill the burnt offering. And the priest shall take of the blood of the sin offering with his finger, and put it upon the horns of the altar of burnt offering, and shall pour out all the blood thereof at the bottom of the altar: And he shall take away all the fat thereof, as the fat of the lamb is taken away from the sacrifice of the peace offerings; and the priest shall burn them upon the altar, according to the offerings made by fire unto the LORD: and the priest shall make an atonement for his sin that he hath committed, and it shall be forgiven him.”

I am reading a fiction book about the life of Rahab. In my book, Jericho has fallen and she is now living with the children of Israel. She is learning about God and learning the Law. She just witnessed her first sacrifice for sin. She was called forth to put her hands upon the head of the lamb and then it was slain. The author described her reaction, her fear, her confusion, her humbleness before the Lord. 

It made me stop and think about what the sacrifice of the lamb represented – Jesus. I thought about His sacrifice for my sin. And I wondered, do I truly appreciate and understand that act of love? I don’t think I do, at least not like I should.

So, for a moment, put yourself in Rahab’s shoes as she placed her hands upon that lamb’s head. I’m sure she thought of all the sins that she had committed. She probably thought of all the lies she had told, all the men she had been with, all the evil thoughts she had about others. Maybe all those things paraded through her head like a bad slide show. And then, she felt the life go out of the lamb. At that instance, she knew that the innocent lamb had taken her place for the sins she had “given” to the lamb. Sin has a price and the payment was the lamb. 

My sin has a price. All the bad thoughts, judgments, laziness, lack of self control, bad choices – all of them have a price. And that price was paid with the blood of Jesus at Calvary. I can say that all day long, but do I let it seep into my heart? Do I let it flood my soul and appreciate what He truly did for me?

I need to do better. We are a generation of entitlement and don’t really stop and consider the sacrifice that someone else does for us. There is less appreciation for our military who give their lives for our freedom. There is less appreciation for our police who sacrifice to keep us safe. There is less appreciation for our teachers who educate our children. There is less appreciation for our medical personnel who study and sacrifice all kinds of things to keep us healthy. Everywhere you look you can see the failure of someone to appreciate the sacrifice that someone else has willingly done for them. No better place is this seen than in the church houses of our country where the neglect of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ is seen vividly by the declining numbers in attendance. And I am guilty, to a point. There are times when I feel like I need to rest and I stay home from a service. The Holy Spirit gets ahold of me and won’t let go. And for that, I am grateful – I know God is working in my life. But I shouldn’t even allow that thought in my head. It doesn’t show appreciation and gratitude for the sacrifice Jesus gave for me. 

So let me encourage you, take some time and read back through the requirements for sacrifices in the Old Testament. Read them, study them and compare them to the life of Christ. See His fulfillment of the requirements with His life and His blood. And then, thank Him genuinely for His sacrifice for you.

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Revenge

Leviticus 19:18 – “Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself: I am the LORD.”

Do you ever get ticked off at someone? I mean, do you have times when someone just gets under you skin and all you want to do it pick them off?

Revenge. Revenge is a terrible illness that is far too prevalent in our society. There are television shows based solely on the very idea of revenge. I tried watching one one time. I felt so dark inside when I watched it. The very thought of someone actually plotting to harm someone else just scares me. I don’t comprehend it.

Maybe I’m just too outspoken to plot. I stew but I don’t plot. Ask my husband. When I get mad, I clam up. And usually clean. Cleaning is my go-to release. So when my house is spotless, you know something is wrong!

Any way, you need a way to deal with anger and frustration without resorting to revenge. When we desire revenge, it clouds our thinking. We can’t see straight. We can’t handle revenge. Yet we think we can.

We are called to love.
Romans 10:19 – “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.”
So, put this verse together with the first verse and you have this: “don’t try to avenge yourself. You can’t handle it. Instead, love your neighbor as yourself.”
You don’t hate yourself, do you? O, you might get frustrated at yourself, but hate? Probably not. So, that being said, you may get frustrated with others, but hate? No. Hate is such a strong word. It implies death. You want to have something or someone no longer in existence. That is harsh. Think twice before you use that word. Mean what you say, sister.

So today, princess, let it go. (Are you singing yet?) Don’t let revenge have any place in your life. Choose to follow another path. Try loving your neighbor. (We will talk tomorrow on what consequences that will have.)