Proclaim and Announce the Freewill Offerings

My apologies for the lateness of this post. My wife, who sets the posts up, was in the hospital unexpectedly. Thankfully she is back home again, and doing well.

Offer a sacrifice of thanksgiving with leaven, Proclaim and announce the freewill offerings; For this you love, You children of Israel!” Says the Lord GOD

Amos 4:5 (NKJV

Amos was announcing for the Lord, what the Israelites themselves thought about instead of what they should proclaim. Sometimes God’s Love can bring forth judgement and rebuke as well as love and honor.

God’s love is something we need to cultivate in our hearts. It’s not a one size fits all thing. Once we receive God’s love, our hearts must be honed and shaped until it fits perfectly. God’s love is honed and shaped in different ways.

  1. First, we must know God’s word and how it applies to us.
  2. Then we must listen to the word, apply the word to our hearts.
  3. Then we must follow the word by doing the commandments.
  4. Now we must receive God’s love in the form of the Holy Spirit.
  5. Now that we have the Holy Spirit living in us, we must listen to all it has to say.
  6. We must now be ready for others to look at our lives and see them as examples

Many today think that by giving some money to the church they have given the sacrifice required to be a Christian. No! The sacrifice required to be a Christian cannot be given by an unworthy human like us. That sacrifice was given by Christ on the Cross of Calvary.

The blood of Christ was required to cleanse us and make us whole again. Pure love like that given by God requires a pure sacrifice.

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

Genesis 1:26 (NKJV)

Of all the hundreds of thousands of things that God created, only one of these was given free will. What is freewill? It is the right to do what you want to do, even if it is wrong.

I can choose to worship God every Sunday and be a church goer, or I can choose to look like God by doing what is right and good.

Going to church and listening to the preacher is not Christianity. Going out in the community and giving of my time and money to the poor and homeless will not make me look like God or Christ. Only when we live our lives in a manner that will cause people to see Christ in us will we earn the right to be called Christians.

A Christian is supposed to “look like Christ.” Only when we listen to the Holy Spirit that lives in us, just as it lived in Christ (Matt. 3:16-17), do we look like God. God has given us His Son to die for our sins, in our place. God gave us the Holy Spirit to guide us as it also guided Jesus. God has given us His word to live by and finally, God gave us His love to come home to. What more could we possibly ask of God?

Sacrificing Isaac

How much do you love God? Would you sacrifice one of your children for God?

Genesis 22:1-14

Due to the circumstances that surround us today, this scripture may seem like it doesn’t apply, but it does. We are living in very trying times. Due to the Covid-19; people are having to make one decision after another.

Today we are going to look at how we can make decisions that please God as much as this incident did.

8  And Abraham said, “My son, God will provide for Himself the lamb for a burnt offering.” So the two of them went together.

Genesis 22:8 (NKJV)

The story contained in this scripture reading is love. Not only the love from God to Abraham, and the faith in God that Abraham had, but also the love that Abraham had for God. This story of love is overly complicated and most people who call themselves Christians, would fail miserably when it came to the faith and degree of love we should give to God.

Notice that, before they went up the mountain, Abraham had faith that God would furnish the lamb for sacrifice. The faith that Abraham had would not move the mountain, however, this faith convinced God of His love for Him.

Because of the pandemic, many people have lost their jobs and are depending on others to survive. Bills are piling up and they are in a panic mode. Don’t worry, if we are honest with each other, we have all been in this predicament.

What we have to ask ourselves is not what we would do in this predicament, what we need to look at is our heart and make sure we have enough faith in God to sacrifice a good job that would make us work on Sunday, because of our Love for God. We also need to look and see what God has put in our path that would make this decision a good one. God will always give us something better than what we think would be good for us.

When we look for a job, we are looking for something that will pay a high wage. We want to make a lot of money so we can do the things the Jones family does. We want people to look up to us like they do the Murphy’s after they bought that new car. What we want is the money.

When God choses something for us, He looks at what we need. God knows about the pandemic that will happen in the future. God knows about the house fire that will happen six months from now. God knows about the accident that will happen to your child at school. God looks at what you need now and what you will need in the future.

How much do you love God? Do you love Him enough to do what ever He tells you to do? Do you love God enough to not sin?

As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.

John 15:9-10 (NKJV)

Notice that Jesus didn’t tell us to keep the commandments while we were at church; He didn’t tell us to keep the commandments while we were at work, Christ wants us to keep the commandments from the time we wake up in the morning until we go to sleep at night. If we can do that, we will show Christ that we love Him.

How many commandments are in the bible? I can’t tell you the exact number, but I can tell you that there are far more than ten. The only way you will be able to know the commandments you have to follow is by studying the bible. Look on the bright side. If you study the bible every day from the time you get home until the time you go to sleep, you won’t have time to sin and your love for God and Christ will grow so much stronger.

There are actually teachers and preachers that will tell you that once you are saved, you can do anything you want to do, and God will forgive you. Do not try it, it won’t work.

Abraham had always done what God asked him to do. God had also determined that all of the descendants of Abraham would do the same.

And God said to Abraham: “As for you, you shall keep My covenant, you and your descendants after you throughout their generations.”

Genesis 17:9 (NKJV)

How can we follow the commandments of God that were given thousands of years ago? They didn’t have all the debt that we have today. They didn’t have the diseases we have today, they didn’t have to travel like we do today, they didn’t have to drive across the country to visit relatives like we do today. A donkey didn’t cost thousands of dollars like the car. Things just weren’t the same back then.

Now that you have tried using all the old worn out excuses there are, let’s look at the reality of the subject. God would never tell you to do something you can’t do, and it doesn’t matter whether you drive a donkey or an SUV.

The descendants of Abraham were given a set of laws and ritual readings they were to follow and perform.

Christianity is not under the law. However, we do still have to follow the commandments that are totally separate from the law. Judaism is a religion; Christianity is a way of life. We are given the word of God and we are also given something that wasn’t given to the Jews. We, as Christians, are given the Holy Spirit to guide us. God is living in our hearts. He is there to instruct us 24/7.

The problem with most Christians is that they don’t listen. If we need guidance on what to do in a certain situation, God is there to guide us, the problem is that we don’t listen when He tells us what to do.

Study the bible and ask God to help you. If you do then God will know that you love him and will have no need to test you like He tested Abraham.

How much do you love God? Would you sacrifice one of your children for God?