“From the Heart” teaching by Drs. Rodney & Adonica Howard-Browne.
In order for a covenant to be established and enforced, a sacrifice must be made. God has already done His part. Man must do his if he wants to reap and continue to reap the blessings of a covenant with our heavenly Father. We have a covenant of grace with God, our Father, through the shed blood of Jesus Christ. No other blood needs ever to be shed again; neither will any other blood, shed as an offering, be accepted by the Father (Hebrews 10:8-10). The sacrifice God expects of His children, who are already washed in the blood of the lamb, is the sacrifice of obedience, thanksgiving and praise.
I hate, I despise your feasts, and I will not smell a savor or take delight in your solemn assemblies. 22 Though you offer Me your burnt offerings and your cereal offerings, I will not accept them, neither will I look upon the peace or thank offerings of your fatted beasts. 23 Take away from Me the noise of your songs, for I will not listen to the melody of your harps. 24 But let justice run down like waters and righteousness as a mighty and ever-flowing stream. Amos 5:21-24 AMP
The Lord wants our sacrifice of obedience! God cannot and will not receive offerings or sacrifices from the wicked—those who pretend to serve God, but who are just in it for what they can get from Him! If we are not submitted to God in our heart attitude, our words and our actions, then our sacrifice is a stench in God’s nostrils and our singing and worship sounds so bad to Him, that He can’t stand to hear it.
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal.
1 Corinthians 13:1 NKJV
Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; 2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet smelling savour.
Ephesians 5:1-2 KJV
God requires justice; He requires that we obey Him and walk in His love. He will gladly accept worship and sacrifices from those who honor His word.
I will accept no bull from your house nor he-goat out of your folds. 10 For every beast of the forest is Mine, and the cattle upon a thousand hills or upon the mountains where thousands are. 11 I know and am acquainted with all the birds of the mountains, and the wild animals of the field are Mine and are with Me, in My mind. 12 If I were hungry, I would not tell you, for the world and its fullness are Mine. 13 Shall I eat the flesh of bulls or drink the blood of goats? 14 Offer to God the sacrifice of thanksgiving, and pay your vows to the Most High, 15 And call on Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall honor and glorify Me. Psalms 50:9-15 AMP
In verse 9, God says, “I will accept no bull from your house, nor he-goat out of your folds.” There is nothing we can offer back to God that He does not already own—all the animals are His—every beast of the forest and the cattle upon a thousand hills. We must bring Him an offering that He chooses—not an offering that we choose! The Lord wants us to be exclusively dependant on Him and to look to Him for everything—for provision, protection and direction. He expects to have our full trust and devotion. The devil is always trying to separate us from God any way he can. He tries to get us to act independently—convincing us to look to ourselves and not to God—out of arrogance or out of a lack of faith in God’s willingness and ability to provide for us. Never think or act like you are a bother to God! Over and over, God reminds us to trust in Him, rely on Him, and ask Him for what we need.
Through Him, therefore, let us constantly and at all times offer up to God a sacrifice of praise, which is the fruit of lips that thankfully acknowledge and confess and glorify His name. Hebrews 13:15 AMP
The Lord wants our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving! Therefore, when we offer our offerings to Him, it should only ever be in a spirit of deep and genuine humility, with the gratefulness and thankfulness of a people who owe Him everything. When we recognize Him as our Lord and source of life, provision and blessing, then we cannot help but praise Him. Praise springs easily and readily from the heart and lips of a humble, grateful child of God. This you cannot do if you trust in your own strength, ability, and wealth; neither can you do it if you blame God for your problems! You must acknowledge His Lordship and His beneficence!
He who brings an offering of praise and thanksgiving honors and glorifies Me; and he who orders his way aright [who prepares the way that I may show him], to him I will demonstrate the salvation of God. Psalms 50:23 AMP
Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! 22 And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare his works with rejoicing.
Psalms 107:21-22 KJV
Oh that men would praise the Lord and glorify Him with their sacrifices of thanksgiving!