The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"One Sacrifice For Sins Forever"
"Sin will tempt us to offer an inferior sacrifice of our own devices to obtain forgiveness, cleansing, and renewed fellowship with God. If we succumb, we will only add sin upon sin."
"And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD. And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering. But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen?" (Genesis 4:3-7).
After Cain brought an unacceptable offering to the Lord - the fruit of his own labors, in contrast to Abel's offering of the sacrifice of another - God offered him an opportunity to make his wrong right. "If Thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted?" The Lord also knew the temptation to bitterness and its evil fruit that challenged Cain: "If thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him."
"Every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death" (James 1:14-15).
Rather than rule over sin, Cain succumbed to it and murdered his brother. In lieu of offering a sacrificial animal, whose blood would have cried of Christ from the ground, Cain killed righteously sacrificing Abel, whose shed blood sounded and resounded with his brother's sin. "The voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto Me from the ground" (Genesis 4:10).
Thankfully, many centuries later, the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ would sound and resound with the mercy "that speaketh better things than that of Abel" (Hebrews 12:24). "If we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth us from all sin" (I John 1:7). Indeed, we began our relationship with God by affirming the Lord's sacrifice. Believers continue such confession in times of failure to trust and obey God by declaring His atoning death for our sins. We offer no other sacrifice, particularly anything that proceeds from our own works and doings. The hymn writer beautifully and powerfully declared the truth:
"Not the labors of my hands can fulfill Thy law's demands.
Could my zeal no respite know,
could my tears forever flow,
all for sin could not atone,
Thou must save, and Thou alone."
("Rock of Ages" - Augustus Toplady)
Sin will tempt us to offer an inferior sacrifice of our own devices to obtain forgiveness, cleansing, and renewed fellowship with God. If we succumb, we will only add sin upon sin. "The labors of my hands" must give way to the nail prints upon the Savior's hands if we are to avail ourselves of the restoration only He can provide. The writer of Hebrews could not have stated the truth more clearly: "This man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down on the right hand of God" (Hebrews 10:12). In the light of such grace and mercy, let us never commit what we might call "the second sin," that is, of seeking forgiveness and cleansing from any sacrifice other than our blessed Lord's "one sacrifice for sins forever." The Savior suffered far too much of agony, forsakenness, and death for us to trust anything other than His offering when we require redeeming restoration to fellowship with God.
A trail of Blood graces the path,
leading to the throne
where God receives the trusting heart,
approaching by His Son.
Without the cross, there could not be
this access freely known.
Without such sorrow, pain, and loss,
we'd have nowhere to go.
Yes, every prayer flows to the throne
on floodtides of Christ's blood,
we come with grateful, trusting hearts,
in wonder of such love.
A trail of Blood graces the path leading to the throne…
"For then must He often have suffered since the foundation of the world. But now once in the end of the world hath He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself."
Weekly Memory Verse
In the day when I cried Thou answeredst me, and strengthenedst me with strength in my soul.