A devotional thought from Christian George for “Sacrifice and Salvation (Part 1)”
Maybe you’ve seen it happen. A woman is wearing a fur coat and makes the mistake of walking too closely to an animal¬¬-rights protest. Suddenly, someone from the crowd douses her with a bucket of bright red animal blood. It happens more than you’d think—a way of protesting the animal-killing industry.
In ancient Israel, blood baths were quite common. In fact, the altar outside the Tabernacle frequently dripped with it. Because atonement for sin could only be achieved through the death of an animal, sacrifice became second nature to God’s people. When they killed the animal and heard it scream and saw its eyes darting wildly, they experienced first-hand the horrible consequence for rebelling against the laws of Yahweh. The sound and sight of death was all around. As Paul would later say, “The wages of sin is death…” (Rom. 6:23, HCSB). But the apostle doesn’t stop there. “…the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Mysterious, isn’t it? The blood of Christ washes us white and clean.
There’s an old hymn we still sometimes sing in our churches. It reminds us of this gift—this blood bath. The first stanza goes like this:
“Have you been to Jesus for the cleansing power?
Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?
Are you fully trusting in His grace this hour?
Are you washed in the blood of the Lamb?”
Because Jesus was slaughtered at Calvary, you and I will never have to find a spotless lamb to kill. The Lamb of God has once and for all been slain. His blood saved the spilling of the blood of millions of animals throughout the centuries. And not only for animals, but for us. Have you been doused in the blood of Christ?
Pause and Reflect:
• Read Isaiah 11:6. What does this suggest about the shedding of blood in the next life?
• What burdens have you sacrificed to God this week?