Bible Reference: Psalm 51:16-17
Translation: New Century Version (NCV)
Bible Text: 16 You are not pleased by sacrifices, or I would give them. You don’t want burnt offerings.
17 The sacrifice God wants is a broken spirit.
God, you will not reject a heart that is broken and sorry for sin.
OBSERVATION: Throughout the Old Testament we see where there were sacrifices for almost any sin committed, and there were even some for praises to God. As we meditate on these verses today I hope that we will concentrate on those things that are a part of our relationship with God that may be considered ‘sacrifices’.
APPLICATION: I believe that a good explanation for the act of sacrificing might be when we offer up something as payment for an action performed by us that may not meet the requirements of the person, or God, who sets the rules. Another meaning might be that we are willing to give up something we love very much, so that someone else could benefit from that thing we are willing to give up. So let me mention a few things that I believe we ‘sacrifice’ in place of something near and dear to us: 1). Some may go to church to please someone bugging them to attend church. So they sacrifice time and go through the motions in order to make that person happy, or at least get them off their back! 2). Some may give to the church, or even to the work of God. So they may sacrifice monetarily with hopes that God might credit them for giving to His causes; 3). Some may ‘send’ missionaries to foreign countries. So they sacrifice monetarily, and give time in prayer for them so that the Great Commission (go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel) might be fulfilled. These are just examples of sacrifices that mankind makes, and in most cases these are fellow Christians. I also believe that in all the examples given, these sacrifices might be noble, and even recognized by God, if done in the spirit of sacrifice and holiness. But in the Psalm we are meditating on, David shares what he found to be noble and trustworthy in a life that is truly after pleasing God. In verse 17 David shared that we must have a broken spirit in order to arrive at the very depth of our heart. I believe this means that we must be at a state where we are willing to let go and let God have His will and way in our lives. But I believe a warning may come with that. For God may remind us of His many blessings and we may get up and attend church without being asked to, or regardless of the way someone looked at us last year when we attended! It may help us to openly declare that since God has blessed us with a good job and a fair income, we will be obedient to His Word and give at least 10% of our gross income, in thanksgiving for His goodness and out of an act of true obedience! We may decide to actually join a missions trip, instead of sending others! Our spirit might become one that is pliable by God. Friends, I believe it is only then that we will be open to hearing God’s voice and obedient to His commands – pleasing to Him. Are you willing to make this kind of sacrifice for the God who sacrificed His very own Son for us? Isn’t this the least that we could do?
PRAYER: Spirit of God, please descend upon us, Your children, and have Your perfect will and way in our lives today. Please direct our hearts and our minds towards Jesus, and may we be willing to sacrifice self, and become fully obedient to Your perfect will for our lives. Lord, our hearts are broken and desirous of everything You might require of us. Please use us in ways that will bring honor and glory to You oh Lord, our Rock and our Redeemer! AMEN!