Summary: Compares OT Sacrifices, NT sacrifice of Christ, and how today, we can bring a sacrifice of praise.
Larry C. Brincefield
Title: We Bring the Sacrifice of Praise
In baseball, they have a play that’s called a Sacrifice fly.
If a runner is on 3rd base...
and there are less than 2 outs...
the batter can try to hit the ball deep into the outfield...
knowing that the ball will be caught...
and he will be out...
but he sacrifices himself,
so that his teammate can score a run.
Parents will often sacrifice their time and money
so that they can earn a good living for their children,
perhaps saving up money for them to go to college,
and so on.
you hear stories about men who will throw themselves onto a grenade,
sacrificing their own life,
in order to save the lives of his fellow soldiers.
In the Old Testament, the Children of Israel would perform animal sacrifices to God.
This was done as a form of worship to God.
We no longer offer animal sacrifices to God,
but I would like us to examine this subject in greater detail today,
and see if there is a message for us and for our worship.
1. OT Sacrifices
In the Old Testament, animal sacrifices were quite common.
These sacrifices can be roughly divided into 2 types.
gifts, tributes, thanksgiving.
and sacrifices for sin.
An example of an Old Testament sacrifice of thanksgiving would be Noah.
Genesis 8:20-21 says, "Then Noah built an altar to the LORD and, taking some of all the clean animals and clean birds, he sacrificed burnt offerings on it. The LORD smelled the pleasing aroma and said in his heart: "Never again will I curse the ground because of man"
God ordained animal sacrices as a sacrifice for sin.
Basically, the animal sacrifices its life, for the benefit of the person bringing the sacrifice.
The theological term is atonement.
Exodus 29:36 says, "Sacrifice a bull each day as a sin offering to make atonement"
Atonement means to make payment, or to make amends.
In the English language, "atone" was formed from the words "at one".
Conveying the message that in order for them to be "at one" with God,
they had to perform the sacrifice.
In our text, it explains how the blood of the animals was brought into the Most Holy Place as a sacrifice for sin.
Even though the Children of Israel didn’t have the benefit of Romans 6:23, they knew that the "wages of sin was death".
They were directed to bring an animal that was without spot or blemish
the blood of the animal would be brought into the Most Holy Place,
while the body was taken outside the city and burned.
2. The NT Sacrifice
In the New Testament, animal sacrifices began to come out of practice.
That’s because Jesus became the Ultimate Sacrifice.
He paid the price of our sin.
He made atonement on our behalf.
He died and shed His blood so that we could enjoy a right relationship with God.
Our text says, "so Jesus also suffered outside the city gate to make the people holy through his own blood" Heb 13:12 (NIV)
In Article VI of the Articles of Faith for the Church of the Nazarene, it says, "We believe that Jesus Christ, by His sufferings, by the shedding of His own blood, and by His ... death on the Cross, made a full atonement for all human sin, and that this Atonement is the only ground of salvation, and that it is sufficient for every individual" —Nazarene Manual 2001-2005
But even though the PRACTICE of animal sacrifices came out of use,
the LANGUAGE of sacrifice continued.
John 1:29 says, "John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!"
Romans 2:25 says, "God presented him
2 Corinthians 5:19 says, "God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them"
Colossians 1:21-22, "Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight"
1 Timothy 2:5-6 "For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men"
1 Peter 1:18-19 "For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed ... but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect"
And probably the most directly stated passsage, Hebrews 9:11-14 "When Christ came ... He did not enter by means of the blood of goats and calves; but HE entered the Most Holy Place once for all by his own blood, having obtained eternal redemption. The blood of goats and bulls and the ashes of a heifer sprinkled on those who are ceremonially unclean sanctify them so that they are outwardly clean. How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God!