SACRIFICE OF PRAISE
"Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name" (Hebr. 13:15).
Most often Hebrews 13:15 is applied to congregational praise and worship to the Lord. Certainly that applies, but it is not the primary in context interpretation of this verse. Paul is discussing that our hearts should be established by the grace that in Christ (Hebr. 13:9). No longer do we praise and worship by law or anything we bring as a tangible sin sacrifice (Hebr. 13:9-11). Why? Jesus sanctified us with His own blood and suffered and was given as a sacrifice outside the gate (Hebr. 13:12). Jesus has chosen to take the place of the scape goat whose sin sacrifice was given with reproach outside the camp. Our challenge is for us to go out in a lost and dying world and continually bear His reproach (Hebr. 13:13). In this temporal life here in this earth we live not for this earthly existence but unto Him who has called us (Hebr. 13:14). Christ is now our life (Gal. 2:20). Christ is now our wisdom, righteousness, sanctification and redemption (I Cor. 1:30). We can do all things through the strength of Christ in us (Phil. 4:19).
Therefore, on the basis of that truth and reality, I will by the strength of Christ's life, righteousness and sanctification in me continually offer my life as a living sacrifice which is my reasonable worship service to God (Rom. 12:1). Any sacrifice must first come from us being a living sacrifice to God. That means that I refuse to live my life separate or apart from Christ as my life, love, wisdom, righteousness and sanctification. With my Spirit birthing, Christ has become all of these things Himself within me. We must truly live the Christ-life. Truly,"it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me" (Gal. 2:20), and where Christ's love, righteousness and sanctification is being expressed through me to others. Living the Christ-life is the only living sacrifice life. My choices are sacrificed on the altar in exchange for His choices and His expression of the Christ-life in and through me to others.
Out of our Spirit shared-life together (I Cor. 6:17; Gal. 2:20), and with an exchanged or transformed mind-life (Rom. 12:2), we can therefore in His strength make the choices to be a living sacrifice (Phil. 4:19; Rom. 12:1). Out of being a living sacrifice, we can by and through Him continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God. Perhaps we can now grasp some understanding on what a sacrifice of praise really means. We are sacrificing our choices and expression for His choices and His expression of the Christ-life in us. That is genuine eternal sacrifice that brings a genuine sacrifice of praise, well-pleasing to God with the fruit of our lips, giving eternal thanks to Him!V
Written by Dwight Davis
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