History is filled with the accounts of people offering sacrifices to God. The blood, sweat and tears of sacrifices offered up to God, and the gods, flow down through the ages. Yet, this costly stream of offerings has had no lasting value--it has evaporated into nothing.
Jesus Christ gave his life upon the cross as the supreme sacrifice for the sins of all humankind. Sacrifice is costly and God paid the ultimate price to take away the sins of the world. The debt of sin was paid with the blood, sweat, tears and life of God's only son. The God who had it all, gave it all upon the cross. The sacrifice has been given. God doesn't need our meager offerings. Take a look at Psalm 50:9-13.
But I do not need the bulls from your barns or the goats from your pens.
For all the animals of the forest are mine, and I own the cattle on a thousand hills.
I know every bird on the mountains, and all the animals of the field are mine.
If I were hungry, I would not tell you for all the world is mine and everything in it.
Do I eat the meat of bulls? Do I drink the blood of goats?
So what, if anything, does God want?
Keep on reading in Psalm 50:14-15.
Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God,
and keep the vows you made to the Most High.
Then call on me when you are in trouble,
and I will rescue you, and you will give me glory.
I could try to expound upon these verses, but for now I think that the scribblings that I have put next to these verses in my bible say it best. The scribblings are in parentheses.
Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God, (thanksgiving and gratitude)and keep the vows you made to the Most High. (obedience and discipline)
Then call on me when you are in trouble, (reliance and trust)
and I will rescue you, and you will give me glory. (praise and worship)
God wants: thanksgiving, gratitude, obedience, discipline, reliance, trust, praise and worship. As you can see, the things that God desires are those things that reside in and resonate out of the very heart and life of who we are.
The blood and water that flowed from Christ's body so long ago still flows. It has not evaporated. God no longer wants a sacrifice of blood that results in death. Rather, God wants the sacrifice of a life lived fully for Him. As you consider the cross and the empty tomb this Easter, remember what God has given to you and give him what He wants in return.
"Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God--this is your spiritual act of worship." (Romans 12:1)