February 19
‘God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.’ 1 John 1:5b
Bible reading: Hebrews 10:8-14 (Go to the Bible passage)
Psalm 51 says, ‘You do not delight in sacrifice, (…) My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart You, God, will not despise’ (16,17).
What self-deception it is to think that God would redeem us from our sins because we sacrifice an animal! This is pure idolatry. This self-deception has caused far deviated people to throw their own children in the fire to please their gods. God does not need bloody animal sacrifices, even if they are offered in accordance with the law (:8). Here too we see that the letter kills, and only the Spirit gives life.
When people had their animals slaughtered while their hearts were not broken and contrite in the awareness that this innocent animals died in their place, God even went so far as to say, ‘Stop bringing meaningless offerings. Your incense is detestable to me!’ (Isaiah 1:13a).
There is no atonement of guilt, even if we would offer thousands of goats, even if we would empty our wallets in the offering plates. Not even the sacrifice of Christ on the cross of Golgotha can redeem us, if we do not have a broken and contrite heart in the awareness that He died in our place.
But Jesus did have a broken heart when He gave Himself as a sacrifice on the cross for all our sins. When we realize what impossible ways He went for us - that He was prepared to be forsaken by His heavenly Father when He took our sins upon Himself so that we would never again be forsaken by God - then our pride will break, our systems of thought will leave us. Then we will kneel down, for what else can we do? Humbling ourselves, we may understand - a little - how perfect He is.

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