Stone Of Sacrifice.

The concept of biblical sacrifice is lost to most. It is believed, promoted and taught of giving of ones outer self to replace an outer condition.  The biblical sacrifice of animals  is understood to  agree with this premise. Bring animals to sacrifice to  appease a blood thirsty God,  to take the  place of the wrongs of an individual.   Sacrifice as we have come to understand and the way it has been taught to us was never the will Of God.  This is the reason it is so easy to believe that Jesus was sacrificed for you/us because we were bad.  This concept has been promoted down through the centuries and has made God a graven image, that we religiously honor and worship.  Sacrifice itself was never God’s will, the punishment theory as God desires punishment for sin, sacrifice being  a substitute and symbol of that.

The  biblical passages taken out of context  would seem to  indicate that sacrifice was God’s will and Law (Exodus 29:38).  The overall teaching shows just the opposite.  Historically throughout many cultures  sacrifice was widely practiced both by the Israelites and other nations.  The sacrificial laws were initially put in place not to establish but  to limit  the sacrifices.  All sacrifices were  forbidden except those  offered in the tabernacle and later in the temple.  Sacrifices for or to any other God  but Jehovah were outlawed and human sacrifice were forbidden.  The original sacrificial laws turned bloody and  potentially murderous rituals  into a reasonably limited and more symbolic form of worship.

In order to understand the true significance of sacrifice it must first  be understood the law of creation and what it is  really meant to represent, but man due to his ignorance of his rightful place has lost this spiritual truth and  believe sacrifice has to do with whats outside of himself.  The Lesser always sacrifices itself for the greater. We see this in nature in such great detail.  An example of this process can be seen in the rocks eroded to soil to washed down a mountain to become the fertile soil of the planes.  giving up its life force for the vegetation, which gives it life force to the loser animal which in turn gives it life force to man.  Man being at the top of the spiritual evolutionary chain, being an aspect of the sun, is unwilling or unaware of this spiritual process and loses the great blessing of knowing the truth that comes with sacrificing his lower self that he may have more abundant life.  Man does not understand the need to sacrifice the lower personal man to that of the Divine Man within so that he may be able to rise  above the lack and limitation of the flesh.

We see the from the truth of nature God’s will of sacrifice the way man has initiated was never the intent. Israel’s history show the need for such limitations.  There was a strong tendency to practice unlimited sacrifice without moral bound.  it was done ia all their towns,… on every high hill and under every green tree, and very often included human victims including children (2 Kings 17:10; 16:4).

(2 Kings 16:3; 17:17; 21:6; 23:10; 2 Chronicles 28:3, 33:6; Psalm 106:37, 38; Isaiah 57:7; Jeremiah 7:31; 19:4-5; 32:35; Exodus 16:20; 20:26, 31; 23:37)

Scriptures shows that God neither required nor desired and was not appeased by the slaughter of animals.  David wrote, “Sacrifice and offering You did not desire…burnt offering and sin offering You have not required.” (Psalm 40:6) And in another place he said, “You desire not sacrifice…You delight not in burnt offering.” (Psalm 51:16) The Lord repeatedly gives the same message: “To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? says the Lord. I am full of the burnt offering of rams and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lamb, or of he-goats.” (Isaiah 1:11) With even stronger words, He says, “I hate, I despise your feast days, and I will not smell in your solemn assemblies. Though you offer Me burnt offerings and your meat offerings, I will not accept them.” (Amos 5:21; Jeremiah 6:20; 14:21) He even states that sacrifice did not come about by His command: “For I spoke not unto your fathers, nor commanded them…concerning burnt offerings or sacrifices: but this thing I commanded them, saying, Obey my voice.” (Jeremiah 7:21) Clearly, sacrifice is not a penalty demanded by God.

Sacrifice was meant to be a symbol of a Holy Life.., I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. (Roman 12:1)

Even though God did not desire a sacrifice, He did desire that which the sacrifice symbolized, that we should love, Him, and love others as ourselves, be fair and merciful.  This is not punishment but what Sacrifice really stands for.

The sacrifices of god is a broken ( humbled) spirit. (Psalm 51:16
  For I desire  Mercy and not Sacrifice; and knowledge of God more than burnt offerings
(Hosea 6:6)
But Samuel replied: “Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the LORD? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to. (1 Samuel 15:22)  
( now you will get a deeper understanding of why Saul was rejected)
Wherewith shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before the high God? shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves of a year old?Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, or with ten thousands of rivers of oil? shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? ( Micah 6:6-8)
To do judgement and justice is more acceptable to the Lord. (Proverbs 21:3)
And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices. (Mark 12:33)
The sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving (Hebrews:15)
The Bible consistently ties sacrifice with , love, humility, justice and mercy.  There is no direct connection to sacrifice and punishment.  Sacrifice was a form of communion with God.  Killing and burning the animals is never called a penalty and the type of animal was always indicative of the internal issue the person was dealing with.   When Jesus  came on the scene the true nature of sacrifice has descended into such a perverted form of worship there was no proof of who or What God actually was, hence  destroying the temple.
ATONEMENT/RECONCILIATION
 Why is it important to understand why Jesus crucifixion was consider a sacrifice.  people often use the term “atonement”, to imply Jesus was punished by the Father for our sins. the term “atonement” has no connection with “punishment”.  It means, “making one” or reconciliation.   We were not reconciled  to God.  God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself (2 Cor 5:19).    Before Jesus returned man had no idea he was outside of God’s will.  Jesus showed us the “way’ by sacrificing he lower man, so the Divine Man may have life. But it was not a punishment. it is only because man can not perceive outside of his carnal/egoic nature the truth of dying to self.

Jesus’ living sacrifice is never connected with punishment received from God. Christ sacrificed Himself in the sense that He made His own life holy and pure. His whole life exemplified the love, justice, mercy and humility represented by the sacrificial meal. His suffering and death were not a punishment, but a means to perfection. “By the things He suffered” He was “perfected.” (Hebrews 5:8,9) “Ought not Christ to have suffered these things and entered into His glory?” (Luke 24:26)

We say that He died for us, because it was for our sakes that He overcame evil and perfected Himself through His suffering. Jesus said, “For their sakes I sanctify myself: that they also may be sanctified through the truth.” (John 17:19) Christ was our sacrifice because He reconciled us with Himself. He made it possible for us to have love, mercy, justice and humility by following His example and letting Him live within us.

 

The New Testament throughout gives the same picture of sacrifice. It is never connected with punishment. For Christ and for us, sacrifice means “doing God’s will,” (Hebrews 10:7,9) and having “His law written on our hearts.” (Hebrews 8; 10:16) It means avoiding sin, (Hebrews 10:26; John 1:29) and keeping a pure conscience.” (Hebrews 10:22; 9:14) Sacrifice means loving others, (Ephesians 5:2) serving God, (Romans 12:1) praising God, (Hebrews 13:15) and supplying the needs of others. (Philemon 2:17) As Paul said, “Do not forget to do good and to share, for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” (Hebrews 13:16)


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