2 Samuel 24:24 Sacrifice What Costs

Ram on a hill

But the king replied to Araunah, “No, I insist on paying for it. I will not sacrifice to the LORD my God burnt offerings that cost me nothing.” 2 Samuel 24:24 

Around the world there are millions of people who give money or other types of donations to people who are in need. Many of these people often give out of their excess or things no longer wanted. As they give, they often make it look like they are sacrificing something for someone else.

While there is nothing wrong with giving out of excess, it cannot be portrayed as a sacrifice. There really is no cost to giving it.

David had sinned against God and realized it. He had to make a burnt offering sacrifice to God. Araunah was going to provide the oxen and the wood for the sacrifice at no cost to David. David refused it, because he did not want to offering a burnt offering that did not cost him. He knew that he had done God wrong and had to pay for it.

Sacrificing is more than just giving something up or away. It is giving up or giving something away that will cost to be given up. It may hurt some to give it up.

There are believers who give up things for God, but only those things that they really do not want. There is no real cost in giving it up.

The purpose of a sacrifice is to give up self to let God have control. It is to humble oneself before God. It is to show God that one is not worthy of anything.

God sees the heart of people when they give. He knows when they are giving a sacrifice for show, or when they are giving it from the heart.

Jesus gave the greatest sacrifice of all–His life. It cost Him everything, so that you and I may have eternal life and forgiveness of our sins. He demonstrated what it means to sacrifice something.

Although the sacrificial system is no longer used or needed, you can still sacrifice to God and for God. As with Jesus, the greatest sacrifice you can give is your life. Allow God to have complete control over your life.

Lay your life and sins on the altar for Jesus to remove them and replace everything with His life. It will be worth it all in the end.

I pray today that you will know what Jesus did for you; that you will know the value of what God has given you; that you will give God your whole life; and that you will allow God to live in you.

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Job 34:11 Payment For Actions

He repays everyone for what they have done; he brings on them what their conduct deserves. Job 34:11

Elihu, a younger man, chooses to speak to Job. He focuses on the statement that Job had made saying that he was innocent of any wrong-doing. He then defends God by showing how God works with people. Elihu stated God brings judgement onto people for what they have done, causing to make them pay for their sins.

When people are going through a difficult time, or major troubles in their life, many believe that God is punishing them for some sin. God is making them pay for their sins in this life.

Believers in the church, have often been known to shun others going through a difficult time. They try to get the person to repent of some sin. To them, God is punishing the person.

Individuals are often known to kick themselves for sins that were done years ago because right now they are going through a difficult time in life. Many fear that God is looking down from heaven and striking them for a sin that was done a long time back, even though repentance for that sin has occurred many times.

Job had not done anything wrong to bring on the difficulties that he was going through. Look back at the first couple of chapters and see that God put Satan up to this trial.

If God were to give everyone the punishment that their conduct deserves, not a single person would be alive today. Everyone has sinned and walked away from God. No one has done perfectly right. Every person who has given his life to God, believing in Jesus, has also sinned since he gave his life to Jesus. The payment for sin is death.

Jesus came to forgive and save, not condemn and kill. You may be going through a difficult time. Look at your life. Are you living in some type of sin on purpose? If so, then change. Seek Jesus and His forgiveness.

If you are not living in a sin on purpose, then trust God. He is allowing a trial in your life for a reason, and it is not because of sin. He may be working to build you up. Or to make you His witness to this world.

Be willing to accept all that God gives you, both the blessings and the trials.

I pray today that you will see God’s purpose for your life; that you will trust God’s work in your life; that you will serve Jesus with your life; and that you will know that Jesus will forgive all sins.

Hebrews 10:17-18 No Sacrifice Needed

“Then he adds: ‘Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.’ And where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary.” Hebrews 10:17-18

In this passage, the author of Hebrews quotes Jeremiah about God stating He will no longer remember the sins of the people. This quote came from a time when the temple still existed and the priests had to offer sacrifices. It was looking forward to the time of Jesus, when Jesus would remove the sins of all the people.

In most of the world the idea of offering animal sacrifices to cover or remove sins is virtually non-existent. Yet the practice of sacrificing because of sins happens a lot.

Many believers in the church know that they have sinned against God and have repented of those sins. However, they live their lives as though Jesus has not forgiven them.

It is often seen of a person who believes in Jesus, who has committed a sin, continue to ask God forgiveness for the same sin. When he prays he asks for forgiveness for a sin that has been repented of and forgiven two years ago.

Others will also punish themselves for the sin they did a long time ago. They might state that they cannot teach Sunday School because three years ago they did some “great” sin and therefore are not worthy to teach. Others will put themselves into some kind of hard ministry to make up for their sin, trying to please God.

Still others will try to give extra-large amounts of money in the offering to please God since they had sinned. Some will suddenly feel they must be a missionary to Africa, to pay God for their sins.

These are just some ways that people sacrifice today to God for their sins. God does not need your sacrifice for your sins. God just wants your repentance and obedience. Jesus paid for your sins. You do not need to pay for them again. What Jesus did was enough.

Be willing to accept the forgiveness that Jesus gives you and forgive yourself. Now work at living for God in what He has done for you and given you.

I pray today that you will know the forgiveness Jesus has given you; that you will no longer condemn yourself; that you will not try to pay for your sins; that you will turn from your sins; and that you will live your whole life for Jesus.

Luke 20:25 Solving a Tax Problem

“He said to them, Then give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.” Luke 20:25

The leaders of the temple did not give up on trying to catch Jesus in something wrong. This time they sent some others to try to trap Him. The famous question of whether it is right to pay taxes to a worldly government or not was brought up. Jesus gives a very simple answer in that you are to give Caesar what is his, and to God what is His.

Looking at that time frame and what Caesar represented gives you a picture of why this question might be asked. Caesar was the leader of the dreaded Roman Empire. They controlled all of Israel, God’s chosen people. He did not fear or follow God in any way.

Today, with the majority, if not all, of the countries in the world, they are run by people in a government that does not serve or follow God. They do not lead the countries with a fear of God.

In America, many Christians do not want to pay taxes because the government uses that money for sinful lifestyle promotions. Others don’t want to pay because they feel it is an infringement on their freedom.

As a believer you must look at it from God’s point of view. Who in reality owns everything and has a right to it? God is the one who owns everything. He allows people to use His stuff to live on this earth.

You, as a believer in Jesus, do not really own anything. You are just a steward of what God has blessed you with.

From the world’s point of view, and God’s, you must give others what is theirs. Jesus stated that you must give the world what is the world’s. Do not be afraid to pay the tax. God will provide more abundantly for you than the government can. God can also use that tax money for His benefit if He chooses to do so.

In America, people love their freedom and their rights. As a Christian, you are a slave to God and have no rights. As a Christian you are a citizen of a different world. Give to Caesar what he wants. God will take care of you.

I pray today that God will reveal His power over the world to you; that you will trust God for all of your provision; that you will not be afraid of the world; and that God will give you the strength to be His witness.