Summary: Does God want our sacrifices?
Does anyone here today like baseball?
I used to not care much about baseball at all. I think it all stems from some of my childhood memories concerning baseball. I remember living in Arizona and playing baseball at school during P.E. classes one day. I was playing way out in right field. Well, this boy came up to bat.
Now, I have a hard time remembering people’s names. I even get my kids mixed up all the time, but this boy from the fourth grade, well, I remember his name. His name was George Bates. Well old George hit a fly ball and it came straight out to me in right field.
Now, it is a long way from the batters box to right field, but I distinctly heard George say,
“If you catch that ball, I’m going to get you after school!”
Yes, I heard that.
Well, being the athletic type person I was, I did not let his remark deter me in any way. I actually caught that ball.
And he actually caught me after school.
And I never actually cared much for baseball after that.
Well, for a few years now my kids have been playing ball during the summers…
I helped coach my sons team one summer.
And I have started to enjoy baseball…maybe not professional ball, but I like to watch the kids play..
I enjoy talking to the boys when they have played the best they can.
You know, sometimes the boys will get a good hit when there is a man on third. They will run as hard as they can for first base but the ball beats them there by just a fraction of a second, and they are out.
They are so disappointed.
But A lot of times I could look at them and say, hey, that was only our first out, or that was only our second out.
Your hit allowed a man to score even though you did not get on base.
You helped the whole team.
Then they feel a little bit better.
There is a term used in baseball that refers to basically the same thing I was just talking about.
The definition is, “ an outfield fly in baseball caught by a fielder after which a runner scores.”
They call that ...... a sacrifice fly.
There is also a sacrifice bunt.
One person sacrifices,
One person gives up something for the good of the whole entire team.
Now, the word sacrifice is defined in Webster’s dictionary as,
To suffer loss of, give up, renounce, injure or destroy for an ideal, belief, or end.
So, really, we all know that to sacrifice is to give up something for a specific purpose.
Now, the Bible talks about sacrificing and sacrificial offerings unto God. It starts talking about it in Genesis and goes all the way through the Bible.
Now, Paul had something to tell us about sacrificing. He had something to say that most people of his day and many people today do not want to hear.
Turn with me please to Romans 12:1
Read Romans 12:1
Present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice.
The word sacrifice is used 218 times in the Bible in 205 different verses.
People had been offering sacrifices to God all of their lives.
People had been giving up their best animals and their first fruits to God.
Now Paul was throwing something different out there.
Present your bodies as a living sacrifice.
As Christians, our bodies are the temple of the holy spirit. The Bible plainly tells us this in 1 Cor 6:19-20
Let me read it for you.
Read 1 Cor 6:19-20
We are to give our lives,
We are to give our activities,
We are to give our expressions,
We are to give our bodies as a sacrifice to God.
What is so valuable to us that we can not give it up to bring a lost soul to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ?
What is so valuable to us that we can not give it up to keep a soul from going to hell?
The great missionary Mr. C.T. Studd said, “If Jesus Christ be God, and gave his life for me, than no sacrifice is to great for me to give him.”
This is a ministry in itself folks.
The Christians offering of his total life as a sacrifice to God is a sacred service.
Now, I know many of us that say, well, “I am doing a great & sacred service for God.”
“Every day I give up something for God.
Yesterday I did this,
last week I did that,
Two years ago I gave up this and that to do something else.
I have sacrificed my time,
I have sacrificed my money,