Sacrifice or righteousness?

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Proverbs 21

3            To do righteousness and justice

Is more acceptable to the Lord than sacrifice.

The truth of this proverb goes against most religions of the world. When worshippers go to their shrine or to their temple they are expected to make some type of sacrificial gift to the church, the god, or to the religious leader. Yes, they are expected to and sometimes demanded to give. Through their sacrificial giving the weight of their sin is lessened through the promise of the religion, its writings or its leaders.

Remember when king Saul came back from their attack on the Amalekites? God had commanded complete annihilation due to the extreme wickedness of this people. Saul killed all the people, except the king, a trophy of his conquest, and the people brought back livestock telling Samuel the prophet that they were going to use some of the animals for sacrifice to God. God’s answer was timeless. 1 Samuel 15 records that rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft and stubbornness is like idolatry, instead, God wants obedience above sacrifice. In Micah 6:6-8 the prophet asks how many sacrifices he would need to come before God and God’s answer is that He requires that the prophet do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with God.

It seems to me that a sacrificial gift is easier than changing the way we life. Living righteously in an unrighteous world and showing justice and mercy is difficult, to say the least. In fact, apart from the indwelling Christ with His righteousness and His mercy, changing our lives is impossible. We see here that God instructs us how to live in Him and how to let His life shine through ours. For it is not how much we give that shows others God’s glory but how we live. Sacrifices? We make them every day as we love others above ourselves thus showing them righteousness and mercy; in these sacrifices God is well pleased.

 

This Saturday our ladies at JIBC are having a True Woman Conference watching videos from last year’s conference in Indianapolis. Over forty women have signed up for this all day event. Pray with us that God will encourage our ladies in their walk with Him and that their fellowship will build the unity of the church. I am thankful for all of the ladies who have worked to put this together and am looking forward to what the Lord is going to do here.

Little Ezra Wayne had is off the oxygen now and might go home tomorrow. We are thankful for his little life.

Have a great day in the Lord,

PS

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