HitMan Ministries

HitMan Ministries
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Sunday, August 11, 2013

"A More Excellent Sacrifice"; A Bible Study

“By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.“ ~ HEBREWS 11:4

A sacrifice is only a sacrifice when it cost you something that requires faith for you to give away. One of the greatest challenges of the Church in the present day is to serve the Lord and surrounding community in continual excellence without compromising its integrity or standard of holiness unto YAH (GOD). When we pull back from the “plow” it gives the enemy more time to devastate the “planting of the Lord”. We must remain always diligent and vigilant in our service, and never be satisfied with our present state or level of accomplishment. We must also be open to change and able to receive correction if we are to go on to perfection. A church that refuses or is unable to change to meet present challenges with a greater future in mind is a church that is only a church in name but has ceased to being so in deed before men and in the sight of God. With this in mind the onus falls upon leadership at every level to commit themselves to excellence first and then pass on the same fervor to those under their watch. We must put forth the best effort in all that we strive to do for God in the most excellent way possible to reap the greatest result in advancing the Kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ. The job of every leader is to be a "watchman" to watch out for the people of God and to set the example in this regard. To often though many leaders demand excellent service for themselves from those they lead but don't give the same quality of care to the flock committed to them. Many times the watchmen have become the very wolves they were suppose to protect the sheep from.

From the beginning, there has been a remarkable difference between the true worshippers who are "in church" versus those who just "come to church". We can easily see the contrast in two of the first offspring of Adam and Eve known as "Cain and Abel". Here were two persons, brothers, both of whom went to worship God and yet there was a vast difference between them. Let's look at the scriptural account and further examine it from this perspective:
GENESIS 4:1-5; "And Adam knew Eve his wife; and she conceived, and bore Cain, and said, I have gotten a man from the LORD. 2) And she again bore his brother Abel. And Abel was a keeper of sheep, but Cain was a tiller of the ground. 3) And in process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the LORD. 4) And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and of the fat thereof. And the LORD had respect unto Abel and to his offering: 5) But unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect. And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell."

  • Cain was the elder brother, but Abel was God's preference. It is not seniority of birth or position, but a true "God-ward" heart in one’s service recognizing the privilege of grace that makes men honorable before God.
  • The difference is observable in their persons: Abel was an upright person, a righteous man, and a true believer who sought the heart of God. Cain was content with dry tradition with no real desire to have a relationship with God beyond his perceived obligation, and without true and sincere reverence for God or the grace given.
  • It is observable in their principles: Abel acted under the power of faith and a sincere desire to GIVE to the LORD; Cain only from the force of routine and a sense of formality looking to GET from the LORD while trying to get over on the LORD.
  • There was also a very noticeable difference in their offerings which says a lot about their true character. Abel brought a sacrifice of atonement, brought of the firstlings of the flock, acknowledging himself to be a sinner who deserved to die, and seeking grace and mercy through sacrificial offering. Cain brought only a sacrifice of acknowledgment, a mere thank-offering, the fruit of the ground, but without proper reverence; here was no confession of sin, no regard to the ransom. This was a detrimental defect in Cain's offering. “Cain gave God what he wanted God to have; not what God required.” This same behavior would pass on to Cain's seed who would be great in the business and crafts of the world but devoid of an understanding of proper worship while still murderous and sinful (STUDY: Genesis 4:16-24). 

Cain was warned about the consequences of falling into jealousy or envy of Abel’s offering, but instead of heeding to the warning and repenting of his poor service and correcting his behavior before the Lord he took it out on his brother Abel and murdered him. We must be careful that in our failure of service we don’t do the same to our fellow Christian brother and sisters by "murdering their character or reputation" with slander and such things when they are trying to serve God with the required excellence we ourselves have refused to give. What nerve have we to sit and be envious at someone else for doing what we refuse to get off our sanctimonious rear ends and do!? It's God's way not our way. When will we ever learn? Let us master our laziness, overcome our apathy, and do what God requires.

GENESIS 4:6-9; "And the LORD said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? 7) If thou doest well, shalt thou not be accepted? and if thou doest not well, sin lieth at the door. And unto thee shall be his desire, and thou shalt rule over him. 8) And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him. 9) And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper?"

What kind of sacrifice in our service is God requiring of us towards him?

ROMANS 12:1-2"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. 2) And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."

  • What is "reasonable service"? It is service that appropriately honors the sacrifice and service already made on one’s behalf by the one you are serving; i.e. Jesus Christ died for the sins of the world so then how should we serve him in lieu of this fact? (STUDY: 1st Corinthians 15:3; 1st Timothy 1:15)
  • What is “holy, acceptable unto God”? Simply put, it is what is accepted by God as defined by the scriptures as God’s requirement to satisfy him and not what you feel satisfies the requirement.

Scriptures that help define God’s requirement:

MALACHI 1:6-11"A son honoreth his father, and a servant his master: if then I be a father, where is mine honor? and if I be a master, where is my fear? saith the LORD of hosts unto you, O priests, that despise my name. And ye say, Wherein have we despised thy name? 7) Ye offer polluted bread upon mine altar; and ye say, Wherein have we polluted thee? In that ye say, The table of the LORD is contemptible. 8) And if ye offer the blind for sacrifice, is it not evil? and if ye offer the lame and sick, is it not evil? offer it now unto thy governor; will he be pleased with thee, or accept thy person? saith the LORD of hosts. 9) And now, I pray you, beseech God that he will be gracious unto us: this hath been by your means: will he regard your persons? saith the LORD of hosts. 10) Who is there even among you that would shut the doors for naught? neither do ye kindle fire on mine altar for naught. I have no pleasure in you, saith the LORD of hosts, neither will I accept an offering at your hand. 11) For from the rising of the sun even unto the going down of the same my name shall be great among the Gentiles; and in every place incense shall be offered unto my name, and a pure offering: for my name shall be great among the heathen, saith the LORD of hosts."

QUESTION & THOUGHTHow can you give God Almighty half hearted service, weak praise, no prayer, a stingy offering, and then expect him to bless you? You don't feel bad about that at all? Not even a little? What if that was how he decided to treat you? Stop playing God cheap because he is tired of it and is no longer accepting it; especially after how good he has been to you! You do realize that if he decided to take back the breath he gave you that it would be the end of you as we know it?! You should think about that the next time you inhale and exhale.

MALACHI 1:12-14"But ye have profaned it, in that ye say, The table of the LORD is polluted; and the fruit thereof, even his meat, is contemptible. 13) Ye said also, Behold, what a weariness is it! and ye have snuffed at it, saith the LORD of hosts; and ye brought that which was torn, and the lame, and the sick; thus ye brought an offering: should I accept this of your hand? saith the LORD. 14) But cursed be the deceiver, which hath in his flock a male, and voweth, and sacrificeth unto the Lord a corrupt thing: for I am a great King, saith the LORD of hosts, and my name is dreadful among the heathen."

*(STUDY: Deuteronomy 17:1; Leviticus 22:17-25; Ephesians 5:25-27; 1st Peter 5:1-6)

Excellence is more than an expectation, but a requirement if we are to serve God like he requires. It is not an option. We serve a great God and he only deserves the greatest of our service unto him. The LORD says of himself in the book of the prophet MALACHI, chapter 3, and verse 6"For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed." God's standard for quality of service has not changed since he's been God which makes it an eternal standard. We ask him for the best and then we give him the less. Something is terribly wrong with that; don't you agree? Maybe we should think about this the next time when we are ranting and throwing our tantrums about why God didn't do this or that. Perhaps we'll consider more carefully our own treatment of God and measure ourselves in a brutally honest way and ask "Is what I am giving to God really worthy of him?" Is he worthy of all of our complaining about what we don't have or didn't get? Is he worthy of our continuous nonchalance in our ministries? Is he worthy of how we make him second fiddle or even the third wheel in our everyday life and relationships? Is he worthy of our stubborn, rebellious, and disobedient behavior whilst we try to make him like us and change his standard to justify our sins as if his Word is erasable and editable to suit our desire? Is he worthy of an almost non-existent fervor in our prayer lives let alone just our having a prayer and devotional life? Is he worthy of our refusal to spend personal quality time in study of his holy Word in stead of just settling for someone to read it to us at church or on TV? Is he worthy of our half-hearted praises and the excuses of our laziness in worship; i.e., we use the excuse "he knows my heart." Huh? and here is what he says about your heart in JEREMIAH 17:9"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" Now what do you have to say to that Mr/Ms/Mrs. big time Christian?!

Nothing we give to God of our own can truly be worthy of him but he gives us a chance to make the best effort in our meager attempts. How great is your effort? Are you really and truly sold out all the way in your service to the LORD? Hmm, I wonder, and if you have too wonder then maybe you just answered the question. It's time now for us to put up or shut up. If we aren't willing at all times to give God our best then we have no right to complain when we don't get the best. He's not a "thrift store God" so stop giving him cheap service, cheap praise, cheap worship, cheap witnessing, and a cheap, raggedy lifestyle of carnality under the guise of liberal spirituality. He's a great king and if we want to be treated like princes and princesses then it's time we give proper honor to our Heavenly Father, the King of kings, and the LORD of Lords in the person of "ADONAI YESHUA MOSHIACH" (the Lord Jesus Christ)!

"Lift up your heads, O ye gates; even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; and the King of glory shall come in. 10) Who is this King of glory? The LORD of hosts, he is the King of glory. Selah." ~ PSALM 24:9-10

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