Exodus 20:22-26 – 22 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Tell the Israelites this: ‘You have seen for yourselves that I have spoken to you from heaven: 23 Do not make any gods to be alongside me; do not make for yourselves gods of silver or gods of gold.
24 “‘Make an altar of earth for me and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and fellowship offerings, your sheep and goats and your cattle. Wherever I cause my name to be honored, I will come to you and bless you. 25 If you make an altar of stones for me, do not build it with dressed stones, for you will defile it if you use a tool on it. 26 And do not go up to my altar on steps, or your private parts may be exposed.
As an act of gratitude, Noah first used a burnt offering to God upon being saved from the flood. A burnt offering is an offering burnt completely on the altar. It was a sacrifice partly burnt and most of it eaten in communion at a holy meal.
Burnt offerings are offerings where everything belongs to God. The idea of atonement is wrapped into the offering but it is not the sole purpose behind such an offering. The offering was for the complete dedication of all sin and was complete before God. While several animals would be permitted for such an offering, for many families a lamb was the only acceptable offering.
As Christians we no longer need to offer burnt animal offering to God as we believe Jesus, our perfect Lamb of God, came and was the final sacrifice for all sin.
Can we still figuratively offer a burnt offering to God in thanks of His provisions? I suppose we can in our hearts and in our lives. We can completely give all of who we are to Him – surrendering our lives completely, not just partially to His will and purpose for each of us.
As yesterday’s devotional shared in a quote by Charles Bukowski, “If you’re going to try, go all the way. Otherwise, don’t even start.”
On this second day of our Lenten journey continue to return to the Lord and don’t get distracted.
Prayer: God of our Christian pilgrimage, give us strength to make it through each moment of the day. Let us lay our lives completely before You, allowing our bodies to be living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to You. Amen.