Proverbs 31:18b - ...her lamp goes not out, but it burns on continually through the night [of trouble, privation, or sorrow, warning away fear, doubt, and distrust].
1 Peter 1:14-16 - [Live] as children of obedience [to God]; do not conform yourselves to the evil desires [that governed you] in your former ignorance [when you did not know the requirements of the Gospel]. 15 But as the One Who called you is holy, you yourselves also be holy in all your conduct and manner of living. 16 For it is written, You shall be holy, for I am holy.I sit and reflect this morning on the greatness of our God. As I began to journal this morning, I began to just thank Him for the sacrifice of Jesus. As words poured out into my journal, I'm sure there was a look of pain on my face as I thought in greater depth about what the word "sacrifice" actually meant. I decided to look it up. A Hebrew "Piel" form of the word "sacrifice" means to press or squeeze. The "Piel" form of a word is intensive & active. Sacrifice is greater than just a non-chalant "offering" to our Father.
As I sat, I pictured my Jesus on the cross. The vision of Jesus' body from the movie "The Passion of Christ" flashed in my mind. I saw his torn flesh. I saw the blood dripping from His brow. I saw the pain He suffered as he was beat. As I envisioned all of this and wrote my thank you's to my Father, I know an expression of pain wore across my face. To imagine that MY sin put Jesus on that cross. For a split second, in my mind I tried to justify that Jesus died for all mankind, not just me... so it was not just MY sins that put him on that cross. BUT my selfish justifications were quickly wiped away when I reminded myself that if I were the only person on the earth that had sinned, God would have still chosen to send his Son, Jesus, to the cross for me. It is hard to conceive.
To bring it even closer to home, I wanted to personalize it. I wanted to make it real to myself. Not just a story, or a neat concept that "Jesus died for me." I wanted the depth of the realness to really sink in. It took me but only a brief moment when I pictured my son, Tyler Junior. I melt just at his hug. My heart melts when he cries because he falls down and hurts his toe. To see his face so sad, and tears streaming down his face, and there is only one person he wants when he gets hurt, Mommy. Mommy can hug like no other. Mommy can cuddle, coddle, kiss it, lay hands on it and remind him what we say when we have a hurt, "Healed in Jesus Name." And through Tyler Juniors tears, he says "Healed. Healed Mommy." I think of how my son has a way of melting my heart and I hate to even see a stubbed toe, let alone putting him in the place of Jesus on the cross.
The word "sacrifice" takes on a whole new meaning. That great of a sacrifice would be extremely painful. I can barely even allow my mind to go there to picture MY son, Tyler Junior, in the place of Jesus. The beatings, the torture, the blood, the pain. My Father sacrificed and WATCHED His Son go through that for me!! When I thought about it, even if I knew that Tyler Junior were going to die & be raised again in 3 days, I still don't think I could stand to watch him being tortured.
All of these thoughts bring "sin" into a whole new perspective. I think of a sin I committed last week, would I really have allowed myself that moment of living in the flesh if the consequences would require the sacrifice of my son? ABSOLUTELY NOT! Then the verse, "Live holy as I am holy," comes to life in a whole new light. Placing MY SON in the place of what God sacrificed with His ONLY Son makes me think completely differently.
Is strife worth it? Is immorality worth it? Is coveting worth it? Is gossip worth it? Is ugly thoughts or words worth it? Is ANY sin worth it? NO! NO! NO! The sacrifice was so great. The sacrifice was so heavy. And we are given the charge to "Live holy as I am holy." As Ephesians 5:1 reminds us also to, "Be imitators of God (copy Him, follow His example)..."
I ask you, is the sin in your life worth such a great sacrifice? Is the few minutes of pleasure or living in the flesh really worth it?