As I recount the things that the Lord has set me free from...fear of failing, fear of being rejected, fear of men's anger (though I still have to fight these fears from time to time~I no longer live with them every day)...It is astonishing how anxiety dissipates with trusting in the Lord and not man, uh me. Truly His perfect love casts out fear. No fear = freedom & rest.
There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love. 1 John 4:18
That was the short version of last night's post.
This morning as I am reading Leviticus 7-9, I found myself pondering many questions. Perhaps some of my bloggy friends have pondered this or heard teachings on it and can help me.
Moses was on the mountain for 40 days to recieve the law, eating and drinking nothing. For 40 whole days I imagine he didn't even need to go to the bathroom. ALL the time was spent communing with God. So, was Moses there with a scroll, taking notes? Let's face it, Leviticus would be hard to memorize~though I suppose if you had 40 days with nothing else to do...Or did God just impart all of it to Moses, and he was able to relay it accurately to the Israelites when he came off of the mountain.
Then there are the gruelling animal sacrifices instructed by the Lord. I have seen my dad butcher cows over the years growing up on the farm, and it took at least a couple of hours, maybe three, for one cow! To think that they did so many animals, and also had to go in and divide the parts. Some of it was burned on the altar, some eaten, some taken outside of the camp. Amazingly, many of the sacrifices were given different instructions. What a ton of work! It dawns on me that Moses' earlier time in the wilderness prepared him in more ways than one for the future mission that God called him to! He must have had to butcher sheep out there~I am sure he never did when he was in Pharaoh's house!
The thought of the smell of the "fragrant offering" to the Lord had me a little queasy too, thinking that they burned the heads of the animals. I don't know, maybe the fragrance of the meat overpowered any burning hair smell (forgive me for the depth of pondring here).
All this to say that I am extremely grateful to have the One sacrifice; the Once~for~all sacrifice for our sins the day Jesus gave up his life on the cross. No longer do we need to go through all that work to receive forgiveness, or peace, or freedom. It is simply a gift received by faith. (See previous post)
Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself. Hebrews 7:27 NIV
Moses was certainly faithful in God’s house as a servant. His work was an illustration of the truths God would reveal later. But Christ, as the Son, is in charge of God’s entire house. And we are God’s house, if we keep our courage and remain confident in our hope in Christ. Hebrews 3:5,6 NLT
It is no cooincidence, I'm sure, that my post last night tied into my ponderings this morning, because the sacrifice and the blood of Jesus has everything to do with freedom and rest. Only when I am forgiven of my sins can I find peace. Only when I know and understand the love God has for me can I trust Him and not look to myself or other people for approval, or validation. It is in freedom from idols~trusting in anything other than God~that we find true rest.
Thank you, Thank you Jesus! For giving your life for me. Help me never take it for granted. Help me never become desensitized to, or forget the excruciating, bloody, humiliating, painful death you endured when you didn't have to so I~and anyone else who trusts in you~can be free. I love you!