malachi’s ministry Part V ‘obedience is better than sacrifice’

Malachi’s Ministry- Part V ‘Obedience Is Better Than Sacrifice’

 

Hath the Lord as great a delight in burnt sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams. I Samuel 15:22

As the nation began to focus their time and attention on things other than God, they began to take for granted the privilege they enjoyed in their personal relationship with the True and Living God. This truth is evident in every realm of life…. when a person is blessed with material possessions, the odds are that the individual will eventually end up taking that blessing for granted. We become so accustomed to having the possession that we expect it to always be available; it is only when we loose it that we began to gain a grateful appreciation once again.

We see this evident in nations where Christians are persecuted for their faith in Christ. It is amazing to see the spiritual determination of the believer and what they  will sacrifice to get God’s Holy Scripture. They travel for miles and even risk their lives just for an opportunity to posses a small portion if only a page from God’s Word. Then the believers will assemble together to put the pages together to share in God’s Word… what commitment and dedication? In this country (America) the average home has 4+ Bibles and we must agree they are never even read, or if so; with  little or no enthusiasm to hear the voice of God speak to his child.

“Behold the Lord hath showed us His glory and His greatness, and we have heard His voice out of the midst of the fire: we have seen this day that God doth talk with man and He liveth” Deuteronomy 5:24

I am concerned that the vast majority of God’s people have never had an intimate and personal revelation from God’s Word. He is alive does speak to His people today… have you heard His voice?

In these same persecuted countries the believers are imprisoned and oft times executed for their public worship and testimony for Christ. While in America the church enjoys the liberty of worshiping openly, without fear of persecution and for the most part can freely share our faith in Christ with those that we come in contact with on a daily basis, yet in this country the church is stagnant at best in its worship for the Lord of Glory and to speak of His name in public is at best, a rare event.

As the nation Israel took for granted the God of their fathers they found the promises made to their fathers fruitless; they had backslidden and became mechanical in their observance of the law. Their commitment to the Lord lacked heart. Even though they were lax in their worship and delinquent in their tithing, they could not understand why God was dissatisfied with them. Consider the old adage….

“we see things not as they are but we are”

It is possible to be blind and to overlook the obvious truth.  It is like the scribes and Pharisees that brought the woman taken in adultery to Christ asking, “the Law commands that such should be stoned, but what sayest thou?” cf. John 8 It is apparent that they had no trouble seeing the sin of the woman yet a spirit void of conviction concerning their own sin.

Their specific violations of the Law included sorcery, adultery, false swearing, withholding wages, oppressing the widow and the orphan and injustice to the stranger. Many of these could be said of churches in America today! God said because of their sin, that He would come near to them in judgment. When the people of God, forsake His Word and commit spiritual adultery God’s pending judgment is certain.

malachi

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