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Daily manna from the Torah by Dr Ketriel Blad

Noach 2-4


Genesis 8:15 ­ 9:7

And Noah builded an altar unto the LORD; and took of every clean beast, and of every clean fowl, and offered burnt offerings on the altar. And the LORD smelled a sweet savour; and the LORD said in his heart, I will not again curse the ground any more for man's sake; for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth; neither will I again smite any more every thing living, as I have done.

Gen. 8:20-21 MKJV

How can the Eternal rejoice in the burning of innocent beings?

What kind of Supreme Being is presented in the sacred Scriptures? How is it possible that He can rejoice in the offering of cruelly sacrificed innocent animals? Isn’t this a very primitive way of serving the Eternal, with animal sacrifices?

First, we have to understand that sacrifices of the innocent weren’t part of the original creation in which everything was very good. (Gen. 1:31). Innocent animal sacrifices were introduced by the Eternal on the day men sinned. To cover their nakedness, He sacrificed one or more animals and covered them with the animals’ skins. So, innocent bloodshed is part of a world in which sin was introduced. In this fallen world bloodshed is necessary to be accepted before the Eternal. This truth is what moved Hevel (Abel) to sacrifice animals before the Eternal. It was due to innocent bloodshed that he was accepted as pleasant before the Almighty.

Now, Is the Almighty pleased by the death of innocent lives? No, it isnšt so. He is not a bloodthirsty Supreme Being. He doesn’t rejoice in the suffering of the precious creatures He has made. He isn’t cruel at all, nor does He want the death of the innocent, whether it is men or animals.

Then, how is it possible that it is written that the Eternal considered the smell of entirely burnt animals pleasing? Is it that He likes the smell of burnt flesh? Or, is it that He needs to eat from those sacrifices? No, it has nothing to do with that.

From what we learned before about Cain and Hevel’s sacrifices, we can draw an important truth. It isn’t the sacrifice itself what pleases the Eternal, but what is behind that sacrifice. Behind Noach’s sacrifice offering was a grateful heart for the salvation he had received. It wasn’t the smell of flesh what reached the Eternal, but the smell of Noach’s heart. Noach’s gratitude was expressed in the sacrifice of those clean animals that were suitable for sacrificing before the Eternal. That gratitude expressed in innocent animal burnt flesh rendered a pleasing smell to the Eternal.

The only way to the Eternal is through sacrifice. The Eternal’s justice demands the death of the sinner, but when there is a substitute sacrifice, the sinner, obviously repented, is forgiven and accepted. All animal sacrifices point out to the atoning death of the Messiah. The Eternal does not rejoice in the sacrifice of a man, but His justice demands the sinner’s death. An animal isn’t enough to pay for men. That is why the sacrifice of Yeshua, the Messiah, was introduced in order to complete animal sacrifices and perfect men’s redemption.

All those who want to be pleasing before the Eternal will have to sacrifice something they have. In the burnt offering the whole animal is sacrificed. That animal represents men. In a burnt offering, or ascent offering ­ olah in Hebrew ­ a man expresses that he had to be sacrificed because of his sin, but the animal takes his place. He also expresses that he has no right over his own life but that his life belongs to the Eternal. With the ascent offerings of these clean animals, Noach showed that his life belonged entirely and exclusively to the Eternal, and it was this that produced a pleasant smell in heaven.

Dear disciple of Yeshua, give yourself entirely to the Eternal as an ascent offering. Don’t let any part of your life be reserved for yourself or others, but only and exclusively for the Eternal. Be a living, set apart and pleasant sacrifice for the Eternal and in this way you’ll be of a sweet savour for Him.

May the Eternal help us be pleasant sacrifices all the days of our lives,


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