Isaiah 53:10

Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering,
he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.

What is a guilt offering????  We see in Leviticus 5 a description:

The LORD said to Moses:  “When a person commits a violation and sins unintentionally in regard to any of the LORD’s holy things, he is to bring to the LORD as a penalty a ram from the flock, one without defect and of the proper value in silver, according to the sanctuary shekel. It is a guilt offering.  He must make restitution for what he has failed to do in regard to the holy things, add a fifth of the value to that and give it all to the priest, who will make atonement for him with the ram as a guilt offering, and he will be forgiven.

“If a person sins and does what is forbidden in any of the LORD’s commands, even though he does not know it, he is guilty and will be held responsible.  He is to bring to the priest as a guilt offering a ram from the flock, one without defect and of the proper value. In this way the priest will make atonement for him for the wrong he has committed unintentionally, and he will be forgiven.  It is a guilt offering; he has been guilty of wrongdoing against the LORD.”

A guilt offering was one of many offerings to the Lord, spelled out to the Israelites in Moses’ time.  All of it seems so violent, so hard to fathom in our day and age.  I’d imagine it would have been difficult even then to keep up with it all.  And someone like me might have cut corners.  Sort of like going to confession growing up, where I might omit those things that God already knows about, but this priest doesn’t need to know.  So – why would God put something in place such as this?

When you consider how huge it is that he put his Son up as the ultimate, final offering for our sins – WOAH!  How he loves us!  How we, who were condemned to eternal death, were bought and paid for – WOAH!  How he loves us!  And how amazing it is that he will see his offspring (that’s us) prolong his days (eternal life), and the will of the Lord truly does prosper in his hands (salvation for many) – WOAH!  How he loves us!

As I’ve been writing these posts on Isaiah 53, I’ve had to pause and recognize the ridiculous, astounding, amazing way our Lord and King has revealed himself to me, and to others, at just the right moment.  It floors me!

For me – I did not have some rock bottom moment that led me to the Lord.  I was actually doing quite well, at least from my perspective.  I had already divorced my wife.  I was not being a good father at all.  I wasn’t even being a good boyfriend to my now wife.  But things were “going well”.  I had good work.  I had my family.  I had my kids, who long so much to be with me.  I had my girl, who was so good to me, even though I wasn’t in return.

And Jesus met me right there.  He drew me in.  Over time, and in a way that didn’t freak me out.  Well – didn’t completely freak me out anyway.  it was still a little freaky….

It started with some teachings I heard on the book of James.  The words struck my in my heart, and I realized that I did not know God.  After reading James 4:7 -8, “Submit yourselves, then, to God.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  Come near to God, and he will come near to you”,  I asked Jesus into my heart.  And it was AMAZING!  How he was right there, in that moment.  My life changed forever at that moment.

Yet – it wasn’t some huge transformation, where I was down on my luck and Jesus delivered me.  So even though I knew I had recieved Jesus in my heart, I always questioned “is this real”?

Cut to a year later, when things started to change.  My dad was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer, and passed away just three months later.  My then fiancee broke off our engagement, because I still didn’t know how to be a husband.  My place was robbed.  I got in a pretty big car accident.  Family members and friends went through marital problems that I had to step up and be a soure of encouragement, a prayer warrior, and a shoulder to cry on.  My girlfriend and I eventually broke up. Twice.  On and on, I’m sure I’m forgetting something here.  But I know that I would not have endured those couple years of pain, sorrow, misery, if it were not for the Lord.  He was, and is, my rock.  And it all made sense to me then – why he met me in times where I wasn’t seeking, wasn’t in dire need.  He KNEW what was coming up, and he made a way for me to overcome.  I will praise his name forever, because even when I was a sinner, he loved me.

I want to share this song with you.  Many of you have heard it over and over…..  Some never have.  But listen to the words, and know how much God loves us!  So much so that he sent his only Son to die, so that whoever believes will not perish, will have eternal life.  Amen….

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KW7CD29V4tU

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