February 24, 2007

Perfect Sacrifices

Leviticus 22:17-33

"Do not offer to the Lord the blind, the injured or the maimed ..." Leviticus 22:22


How much is your life worth? How about the life of your spouse or children? No price is too high, of course. We spend billions on human health care, and almost the same to help our neighbor. Life is worth the cost.

Because it is God's gift, human life is priceless. God has created human beings in his image. As a result, we have so much more than physical life. We can use our hands, minds, and voices. We can build, farm, sing, play music, and do much more with God's gift of life.

The sacrifices of God's people reflect the preciousness of human life, as well as our abuse of the gift. Our sin and rebellion against God offend and grieve him because we deny him, the giver of the greatest gift. But God is gracious. He covers our sin through a sacrifice, a burden we are too fragile to bear. An acceptable sacrifice, however, reflects the cost of life.

But isn't it a waste to give your best only to have it destroyed by fire? Will God not understand if we give something of lesser value, offered with utter sincerity? Ask yourself again: What's your life worth? How much do you value the forgiveness of your sin and the gift of eternal life? Will you give as you have received?

Let us offer our lives as sacrifices of thanks and obedience to God for the immeasurable gift of his grace through Jesus Christ, our Lord.

Thank you, heavenly Father, for covering our sin with the precious blood of Christ, the Lamb without blemish or defect. Help us to give our all in service to you. Amen.

About the author — Arie C. Leder

Dr. Arie C. Leder is the Martin J. Wyngaarden Senior Professor of Old Testament Studies at Calvin Theological Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He previously served as pastor at Ebenezer Christian Reformed Church, Trenton, Ontario, and with Christian Reformed World Missions in Latin America. He teaches courses on the Pentateuch and on historical books of the Old Testament.

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