Sacrifice Simplified

 In the dark days of Israel before the time of Christ, the law called for a sacrifice to atone for ones sins. I get the idea from scripture that the right thing to do was with a good and giving heart bring God your best and offer it to Him at the Temple in Jerusalem. That meant that a family would raise an animal (their best animal), treat it probably better than they would treat their own kids and when the Day of Atonement would draw near they would make the long trek to Jerusalem and offer it up in sacrifice to God. They didn’t have station wagons in those days so if you lived far away you may have to travel across mountains, deserts and other obstacles the wilderness of Israel might hold. I can only imagine the sacrifice families would have to make to accomplish this. Maybe making sure the animal ate well before the family ate or using all their resources to bring the animal to the Temple. Always trusting God would forgive them and continue to provide for them.

 

 

  

 When Jesus arrived in Jerusalem and went to the Temple He was angered by vendors offering to sell people animals for sacrifice. I don’t think it was so much the fact that money was changing hands in the Temple. I think it was because of what the vendors had turned the act of sacrifice into. Sort of a fast food, drive up mentality to getting your sacrifice to God over with and out of the way. This meant the family no longer had to worry about raising an animal to give to God they could just buy one when they got to the Temple. No longer thinking of God daily as they raised and cared for the animal they were to bring to Him.

 

 

As followers of Christ we realize Jesus is the complete sacrifice and atonement for all our sins.

 

 

    The other day I read an article about a church that has purchased three ATM/ offering machines for their lobby. The pastor was quoted as saying “Its like an ATM for Jesus”. They are located so that they are the first things you see when you enter the church, just like the moneychangers at the Temple. One of the people who attend the church said it was much easier for her to break down to the Lord (whatever that means?) These card readers also known as Giving Kiosks and tithing machines have increased revenue for the church and made it so much easier for all the attendees to give. Even if they didn’t think about the Lord all week they could remember Him by swiping this Sunday. It makes me wonder if Jesus visited that church if He would turn over those machines? Maybe when people get those micro chip thingy’s implanted in them they could just pass a small scanner down the aisles of the church to make it even easier to give God their best.

5 comments

  1. Do you really feel that Jesus got upset at the vendors because of the sheer convience of the sacrifice or was it because they were making a profit off of the Lord’s house and using it as a storefront? I look at my personal tithe way before I get to the church building. It’s a decision that is made on payday and being the first portion figured out. Although it does give a wierd feeling in your belly when you hear or see something like a giving ATM, I don’t feel as though I put more nurturing time into writing a check and folding it perfectly in half, before sticking it into a tithe box. I still feel that it all goes back to the heart of the giver, not the color of the money(paper or Plastic).

  2. Yes Ray I do interpret Jesus’s actions at the Temple that way. When I think about the difference between giving God their best or giving whatever they were able to find on sale at the Temple. Maybe I am wrong though, maybe it was the same thing to purchase whatever cage-worn creatures were available when they got there and sacrifice those to God. Maybe Jesus would have been just as mad if they were selling other things instead.

  3. I personally would run as fast as I could if I walked into a church that had an ATM collection machine. But that’s just me. I happen to love the way we give at Eastgate.

  4. Though I don’t… really like these kinds of giving kiosks, I agree with Ray. It’s really not all that much different from folding a piece of paper. The church is getting more money out of it, but only because it’s “easier,” which is what I think you were mad about. If people are to lazy to take out a check and write it out, then money that they give through these Giving Kiosks because it’s easy isn’t heartfelt. Most people find it incredibly hard to actually give that 10%. It’s sad that people care so much about money…

  5. Yikes!! Did I come across as sounding mad? I was just making an out-loud observation and wondering how Jesus would view them. I wasnt mad at all.

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