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Daily manna from the Torah by Dr Ketriel Blad

Emor 31-6


Leviticus 23:33-44

These are the appointed feasts of the LORD, which you shall proclaim as times of holy convocation, for presenting to the LORD food offerings, burnt offerings and grain offerings, sacrifices and drink offerings, each on its proper day, besides the LORDıs Sabbaths and besides your gifts and besides all your vow offerings and besides all your freewill offerings, which you give to the LORD.

Lev. 23:37-38 ESV

What is the most important thing in the appointed feasts?

Since we haven't had a temple for such a long time, it's easy to not take seriously what the Torah really teaches about sacrifices. It's obvious that one of the central themes in the feasts is the offering of animal sacrifices to the Eternal. I think we can say that this is the most important issue of the feast. Feasts are for presenting sacrifices to the Eternal in the first place and then come the remaining aspects of each one of them. First the sacrifice, and then the rest, first the Eternal and then us. This is a principle of the Kingdom of Heaven. There can be no relationship with the Eternal without sacrifice.

  Nowadays we can't celebrate the feasts correctly because we don't have the temple yet. Therefore, no matter how much effort we put on fulfilling the rules of every feast, no celebration of these appointed festivals will be a hundred per cent as He wants.  

There are many kinds of sacrifices, though; and while we don't have the possibility of burning animals on the altar, we have to search for more ways of presenting sacrifices. The most important thing is to place the Eternal in the first place on all the festivals and presenting any kind of sacrifice that pleases Him is the practical way to show it.

We can offer prayers with worship instead of sacrifices. We can also give money or other valuables to worthy causes. The motivation for any sacrifice is that the Eternal is exalted and that His will is done on earth as it is in heaven. If that is not the motivation in our prayers, praise and donations, then they are not pleasing sacrifices to Him.

If we pray and sing to feel well, to fulfill religious duty, to be seen by men, to be praised by people, then we are not presenting sacrifices to the Eternal, but seeking our own interests. The motivation behind our sacrifices has to be the exaltation of the Eternal in everything. In this way we can celebrate the feasts before Him, rejoice, and then receive and enjoy all the good things He gives us. But our enjoyment and well-being before Him always comes as a result of the pleasing sacrifices we've already presented.

May the Eternal pour His Spirit on us to help us set correct priorities always so that we can present offerings and sacrifices with the right attitude and motivation for His glory and honour, amen.


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