.



LIVING SACRIFICES AND VISIONS

For lack of vision my people are perishing. For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end


I am certain that many of us are already familiar with today's text contained in Proverbs 29 and Jeremiah 29 how that, God has a wonderful Plan and Vision for our life. Yet there will be some who confess Christ as their Savior who will spend a lifetime trying to figure it out but will never come to discover it for themselves.

God's Vision for our life is SIMPLE, SO SIMPLE that we could easily over look it. For those who have begun to understand God's Vision for our lives we will never again look at ourselves in quite the same way.

Perhaps you are one of those who are trying to figure it all out. You will be relieved to know that the Scriptures speak clearly as to this matter. You need not go on guessing any more, hoping one day to run acRrss it. The question we must ask ourselves is, are we prepared to make the sacrifice involved in having it made known to us?

We are going to take the rest of this devotional to look at some of the Scriptures directly related to our subject. In order to do so we will travel back in Scriptures to a time when God instituted and put into place the Sacrificial System. Let's take a look.

And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune
with thee…and thou shalt burn the whole… upon the
altar: it is a burnt offering unto the LORD: it is a sweet
savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD

When sacrificing an animal according to God's law, a priest would kill the animal, cut it in pieces then place it on the altar (For those scholars out there don't try to jump ahead of me.). The animal sacrifice would then be totally consumed by fire (sent from the presence of God). This was an offering pleasing and acceptable to God.

Just as sacrifice was essential in the Old Testament so is it today. How's that? Well as we move forward in time and take a look in the New Testament we are going to come across an astounding fact and that is that we, the Saints of God, are referred to by God as a Royal Priesthood. And as a Royal Priesthood what do you suppose we are called upon to carry out? Now comes the good stuff!

Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ…ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood,an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: 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 (spiritual service)

Are you beginning to see the Vision God has for your life? Think of it. As a ROYAL PRIESTHOOD we have the highest privilege of offering ourselves, not animals, as a living sacrifice. Yes, God requires us to offer up spiritual sacrifices. These sacrifices include the PRAISE of our lips as well as utterly destroying and breaking into pieces the flesh.

On a moment-to-moment basis we are continually presenting to God our own desires and offering up to Him our complete allegiance. This allegiance includes our undying obedience, an obedience that stems from a heart that is full of gratitude for all that He has done on our behalf
(see 1 Samuel 15:22; Psalm 40:6; Amos 5:21-24)

Along with God's Vision for our life will come a dramatic and visible change in the way we conduct our stay here on earth. God's Vision for us will impact every area of our lives. It will affect our thoughts, the things that fill our conversations; it will cause us to shift our focus from what is earthy to what is Heavenly, it will even shape our values concerning the "things" we pursue during our pilgrimage.

God's Vision for our life is so powerful, so monumental that it will shake us to the very core of our spirit. Yet there will be some who will think that this kind talk is nonsense or too narrow-minded. They will be content to accomplish nothing significant as far as God's Vision for them is concerned and will presume on His grace to "bring them home" in the end.

Oh, they want to experience the joy that is to be found in a life that is in fellowship with God, but they will have nothing to do with the price tag which comes attached in knowing it, and that is PAIN and SACRIFICE. But God clearly tells us in words easy to understand, "

There (at the altar of sacrifice) I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee

So far we have seen that are called upon to operate as a ROYAL PRIESTHOOD. And as such we have the responsibility to offer up spiritual sacrifices. We are to present ourselves as a living sacrifice, that is, we are to climb up on the altar of sacrifice, and in an act of humble submission, become the ACCEPTABLE OFFERING THE LORD CAN BE PLEASED WITH.

But there is still one more crucial element that remains and that is for a sacrifice to be complete it needs to be totally consumed by fire. Where does this fire come from and just how does it fit in with God's Vision for our lives? In the Old Testament we read,

And there came a fire out from before the LORD, and consumed upon the altar
the burnt offering and the fat: which when all the people saw, they shouted, and fell on their faces

Ok, that was the Old Testament. So just what does that have to do with us today? And what about the fire, from whence does it come? I trust you will prayerfully consider the following Scriptures, as they will help us to understand this important element. LISTEN CAREFULLY for It involves the trials that you and I are called upon to face on a daily basis.

Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you. Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto the praise and honour and glory at the apperaing of Jesus Christ

DO YOU SEE IT?

The trials you and I face is the FIRE SENT OUT FROM THE PRESENCE OF GOD. How wonderful! How encouraging! GOD IS IN CONTROL of the whole process. That is why Peter could say,

Let those who suffer according to the will of God commit the keeping of their souls as unto a FAITHFUL CREATOR.

What an awesome Vision God has for our life. His Vision for our lives is good, pleasing, and acceptable. Let this truth transform your life and renew your mind.

In His Name And For His Glory

Today's Scriptures Comes From The Holy And Infallible Word Of God And Can Be Found In the following passages:
Exodus 25:22, 1 Peter 2:9, 1 Peter 2:5 Romans 12:1, Exodus 29:18, 1 Peter 4:12, Proverbs 29:18Jeremiah 29:11
Leviticus 9:24 1 Peter 1:6,9 1 Peter 2:9

THINK ON THESE THINGS ACT ON THESE THINGS

May God grant you His peace 
If I can be of any assistance
please don't hesitate to drop me a line.
Dan

back to home page



 
Now I commend You Brethern To The Word Of His Grace That Is Able To Build You up And Give You An Inheritance Among The Saints Ac20:32