Sacrifices That Please God

Thursday, December 6, 2012

(Ephesians 5:2) "And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour." 
I'm reminded we are in the Fall season when I come home and smell the pumpkin candles burning. It is a familiar sweet smell that reminds me I am in my own surroundings with my own family. Two words in this verse give us a similar idea. The word "sweetsmelling" comes from the Greek word euodia which, if you look closely, you can see how the English word odor is derived.
Although this is the only place in the Bible where the word "sweetsmelling" is used, we usually see the idea of something "sweetsmelling" in connection with a sacrifice to God. For example, in Genesis 8:21 we see, "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;... " and in Leviticus 1:13"... it is a burnt sacrifice, an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto the LORD."
As you can see there is more to this than simply what smells good to the Lord. What is sweet smelling to Him is something that is acceptable. In fact, notice the "sweet savour" sacrifice of Noah in Genesis 8 caused the Lord to determine He would no longer curse the ground. A sacrifice that pleases the Lord and satisfies Him means that a curse is no longer necessary as judgment. This is precisely the type of sacrifice provided by the Lord Jesus Christ! God's people are those who have the curse of sin's penalty removed because He was the fully-satisfying sacrifice for our sins (a "propitiation").
As Christ's provision became the "sweetsmelling savour" to God the Father, in Christ we are also a sacrifice that pleases Him: 2 Corinthians 2:15 "For we are unto God a sweet savour of Christ, in them that are saved, and in them that perish:" In order to fully live what God created us to be in Christ, we have to identify with Christ by dying to self and demonstrating the living sacrifice which is pleasing to the Father. This is the capacity today to overcome sin's power. Knowing we are this sweet savour unto the Lord provides us with the assurance that one day sin's presence will be removed.
Renewed Thought - Christ's sacrifice unto death provided us with the opportunity to become a living sacrifice unto life.


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