One of the mistakes we make when it comes to our worship is thinking that it is merely an exercise in which we are refilled. We have spent ourselves for Christ and here we are on the day of rest to be repowered by the Spirit in worship. There is truth in the sentiment for “from him, through him, and to him are all things.” So there is a “from him” in worship.
But, Paul says that we “present our bodies as living sacrifices unto God.” And he adds that this is our reasonable service and worship. Worship, then, is a very active endeavor. You are presenting yourself to God, and you are doing so as a sacrifice.
The sacrifices of the Old Testament were quite passive. Their job was to be taken to the altar and killed. But, those sacrifices could never take away sin. Christ was the only sacrifice that could cancel sin entirely. And He was not taken to the slaughter by another but laid down His own life willing.
In the new covenant, we don’t need any more blood sacrifices, for Christ was the once for all time sacrifice who paid for our sin completely.
But, where does that leave us? Aren’t our bodies sacrifices as we worship God? Yes, indeed. But we are not sacrifices for sin. We are living sacrifices. And as we offer up our very selves to God it should be a lively endeavor.
So sing robustly. Pray fervently. Hear the Word attentively. Confess sin diligently. Receive assurance of your forgiveness gladly. Eat and drink at the table with a lively faith.
Be done with dead and dreary words, attitudes, and works. You are very much alive. So alive, you will never truly die. So alive, you can go sacrifice yourself on an altar and go right on living.
Jared Longshore – November 5, 2023