And the priest shall burn all on the altar as a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, a sweet aroma to the Lord. (Leviticus 1:9)
If we consider that we are called upon to be a “living sacrifice” then it makes sense that we — that is, our flesh, our will and everything that is “us” — must be consumed by the fires of the Altar. By that I mean that our will must give way, completely and without reservation to our Father’s Will because He is, as we are told, a “consuming fire” (Hebrews 12:29). As we all know, this is easier said than done.
In a literal sense, it goes against our nature to stick our hand in a blaze much less our entire body, and yet metaphorically speaking, this is exactly what God is asking us to do. Many times we see this concept demonstrated as we go through seasons of testing. Whether it is orchestrated or allowed by God, He permits difficulties and trials to touch our lives so that we may learn and be compelled to draw a bit closer to the fire and be consumed — not destroyed. The more of us that disappears into the flames, so to speak, the more of Him we see manifest in our lives.
I can’t speak of this without thinking of those three Hebrew men who were quite prepared to die in Nebuchadnezzar’s furnace rather than bow down to his false god. I’m confident they didn’t want to die that way, nevertheless, they were willing to be cast into the fire in service to the Most High. They represented what it truly means to be “living sacrifices” — those who are so committed to God that their own lives don’t matter anymore. That thought leads us to this one — and the one that we will conclude with today. Those who will overcome the Adversary in the last days are those who present themselves as living sacrifices, as it is written:
And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death. (Revelation 12:11)
Blessings and Shalom,