Thursday, November 6, 2008

Sacrifice of Praise

As I finish reading Hebrews this morning, a verse continues to stand out on the page:

"Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name" (Hebrews 13:15).

I notice four particular truths in this verse.

#1 by Him
The preceeding verses discuss the sacrifices of the Old Testament and Christ's sacrifice with His own blood. It is only because of His sacrifice that we are told to offer the "sacrifice of praise." Without Jesus' sacrifice, the animal sacrifices would still be necessary and we Gentiles would still be outside the gates!
#2 continually
The word "continually" denotes "recurring regularly and frequently." We are to offer this sacrifice of praise regularly. For some, this may require a change of attitude. It may require you to open your eyes and see the goodness of God's blessings all around! Recognize the little things God has placed in your life that deserve praise, and don't take the people in your life and your other blessings for granted. If you consider that you do not deserve ANY of God's blessings (and we don't), you may begin to recognize His mercy and grace in your life more frequently.
#3 sacrifice
I notice the Word uses the term "sacrifice of praise," which indicates to me that we should praise the Lord even when it is not easy. It is not hard to praise Him for good weather, good financial blessings, good health, good children, and good food! But when it becomes a "sacrifice of praise" is when we "continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God" when life doesn't go our way. Can we still praise Him when loved ones are sick? Can we still praise Him when the money in the account is low? Can we still praise Him when we see our sin? Can we still praise Him when life in general doesn't roll the way we had hoped? Those are times when we can evaluate whether our trust is in ourselves, our circumstances, or our God.
#4 His name
Finally, the Lord tells us to give praise and thanks to His name. We know that any grace and mercy in our lives is a result of Him. We would have no hope without Him; therefore, it is by His name that we offer this sacrifice of praise. This brings to my memory Philippians 2:9-11:
"Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father."
His name is the only worthy name. He asks for a sacrifice of praise. Will you comply?
In the Heart of our Home,


Mama Hen said...

Hey sweet friend! I love you and am praying for you.

Just A Family said...

Thanks for your encouraging words.
I'm so very glad you and I can walk a road together....

Don't be green, be blue........

much love,