Sunday, February 19, 2017

Psalm 50 - The Sacrifice God Wants

The sacrifical system of the Old Testament was a foreshadow of the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus. It was fulfilled - completed - by the death and resurrection of Jesus. But even when the sacrificial system was still in place (like, when Psalm 50 was written) God wanted something different.

It's not that they were doing the sacrifices wrong. Notice that God said, "I have no complaint about your sacrifices or the burnt offerings you constantly offer." v.8 But then notice. God said He didn't need those sacrifices. Why would He? When He owns all the cattle on a thousand hills why would He need us to offer a bull or a goat to Him?

Here's what God says He wants - a sacrifice of thanksgiving! That was probably one of the things that should have been a part of the sacrificial system. Perhaps the sacrifices of bulls and goats were supposed to lead to thankfulness, but in their efforts to do things right they forgot the spirit of the sacrifices. They did what God asked, but there wasn't any thanksgiving in their hearts.

Twice in this psalm we read these words.
14 Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God, and keep the vows you made to the Most High.

23 But giving thanks is a sacrifice that truly honors me. If you keep to my path, I will reveal to you the salvation of God.”

It reminds me of Philippians 4:6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.

Ephesians 5:20 always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

A quick search on your favorite Bible website will give you hundreds of verses telling us to give thanks to God. (I use to look up verses. It has a lot of translations, you can do word searches, compare two translations at the same time, read commentaries on verses and passages.... It's a great resource.)

And as we offer sacrifices of thanks God makes promises to us in return.
15 Then call on me when you are in trouble, and I will rescue you, and you will give me glory.”
23 But giving thanks is a sacrifice that truly honors me. If you keep to my path, I will reveal to you the salvation of God.”

Bottom line:
We don't have to give sacrifices to pay for our sins. Jesus covered that for us forever.
Live your life in thankfulness to God. Let thankfulness be your sacrifice.
Call on God when you're in trouble and He will rescue you (and you will give Him glory.)
Keep to God's path and He will reveal His salvation.

Pretty awesome, don't you think?

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