Monday, October 27, 2014

We still offer "sacrifices" to YHWH today - don't we?

Many Christians (and even Torah observant people) will insist “Jesus paid it all and we don’t have to do anything else but believe in Him.”  And they will, ad nauseum, use the misunderstood writings of Paul to prove it….

While it is true that we must accept the atoning death of Y’shua, it’s only the partial story – because there is a “rest of the story!”  YHWH (pronounced Yah-weh, our ELOHIM) was specific that ALL who accept Him as their God, are to do exactly as HIS people do (Numbers 15:13-16).  And HIS people were Torah observant!  If you ignore His Divine Instructions in Righteousness, WHOM are you worshiping?  Our ELOHIM has always required “sacrifices” of His people.  Today, we no longer have to kill innocent animals to atone for ours, but we still must continue to offer spiritual “sacrifices”.  Here’s what I mean:

Spiritual sacrifices are pleasing to YHWH:

1 Peter 2: 5. And you also, as living stones, are built and become spiritual temples and Set Apart priests for the offering of Spiritual Sacrifices, acceptable before Elohim through Y’shua the Mashiyach. (AENT)

FOOTNOTE in the AENT:  The spiritual component of sacrifice is much more important than what is being “sacrificed”; otherwise it would have no more significance than a backyard barbecue.  A sacrifice is evaluated by spiritual content that is elucidated in Torah, the Prophets and through Mashiyach.  The surrender of one’s will, peace offerings, bountiful offerings, thanksgiving offerings, mercy offerings, or sacrifices to establish resolve or new direction, congregational sacrifices, national sacrifices, sacrifices towards becoming Set Apart, or sacrifices to aid purity of thought and attitude are all potential “spiritual sacrifices.”  

“Spiritual sacrifices” unto YHWH are Set Apart and distinct from the sacrifices towards the physical gods of materialism, relativism or religious identity.  All authentic spiritual sacrifices have components of Righteousness, Judgment, Justice, Mercy and Faith; they are not cerebral, but spiritual, not in word only but indeed (visible) as well, and they are made with spiritual intent within the heart.  

The steps to making those sacrifices can be found in James 4 and Matthew 5:22- 26emphasis 23 and 24. 

James 4: 7. Subject yourselves therefore to Elohim; and stand firm against the Accuser and he will flee from you.  8. Draw near to Elohim and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners: sanctify your hearts, you who are divided in mind.  9. Humble yourselves and mourn: let your laughter be turned into mourning, and your joy into grief.  10. Humble yourselves before Master YHWH and He will exalt you.  11. Speak not against each other, my Brothers; for he that speaks against his brother, or judges his brother speaks against Torah and judges Torah. And if you judge Torah, you are not a doer of Torah, but its judge.  (AENT)

Many attempt to use James 4:11 to suggest WE are not allowed to “judge” or tell anyone they are sinning.  But that’s not what it means at  all.  What it means is, if you add YOUR OWN judgments to those already established in the Torah of YHWH, then you have judged Torah as insufficient, and are not allowing it to be your judge….

Matthew 5: 22. But I say to you that anyone who provokes to anger his brother without cause, is condemned to judgment and anyone who should say to his brother, I spit on you, is condemned to the assembly, and anyone who should say, you are a coward, is condemned to the Gehenna of fire.  23. If it is therefore that you offer your offering to the altar and there you should remember a certain grudge your brother holds against you,  24. leave there your offering upon the altar and go first and reconcile with your brother and then come offer your offering.  25. Be in agreement with your adversary at Torah; while you are with him on the way, or else your adversary at Torah deliver you to the judge and the judge deliver you to the officer and you be thrown into the house of captives.  26. And truly I say to you that you will not come out from there until you pay the last coin.

A friend of ours, Pastor Ray Allen, recently wrote something profound.  He wrote:  “Offering sacrifices is unclean if we do it grudgingly or because we “have to instead” of because we “want to,” and to please YAHWEH, according to Isaiah 64:6, which says, “All of us are like someone unclean, all our righteous deeds like menstrual rags; we wither, all of us, like leaves; and our misdeeds blow us away like the wind.”  (See 13:15 and 1-3 for guide lines for priestly Spiritual Sacrifices.)

Hebrews 13: 15.  and through him, let us at all times offer to Elohim the sacrifices of praise, that is, the fruits of lips which give thanks to His Name. 

Romans 12: 1. I plead to you, therefore, my brothers, by the mercies of Elohim, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, Set Apart and acceptable to Elohim by a rational service (of him).  2. And be not conformed to this world; but be you transformed by the renovation of your minds: and discern you what is the good and acceptable and perfect pleasure of Elohim.  3. And, by the grace given to me, I say to you all: Do not carry thoughts beyond what you should think; but think with modesty, as Elohim has distributed to each one his measure of faith. 

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