When we think of sacrifice we often think of giving up some time for something, maybe a certain kind of food, or some money. We also think of the lives sacrificed in the military. The origin of the word is much deeper than we tend to use it, however. It was/is really about setting something apart to give up (sacrifice) for God(s). We all have heard of sacrificing people, babies, virgins, etc. from history and movies. These were sacrifices that required blood for a higher power.
The Bible talks about blood sacrificing as well. The people of God had to sacrifice their best animals to be right with God. The priests would make these sacrifices to pay the price for the sins of the people. Of course we know now that Jesus took the place of all of the blood sacrifices, by sacrificing Himself on our behalf. That’s why we celebrate Easter. Jesus’ death and resurrection covers His people once and for all.
Hebrews 13:15-16 tells us that there’s still sacrificing to be done, it just looks differently. It says, “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise - the fruit of our lips that openly profess His name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.”
Now, instead of sacrificing blood, Hebrews teaches us that praise and acts of service are now our sacrifice. It’s a way we can show thankfulness for what Jesus did on the cross, to thank the Lord for what He’s done, to thank God for our daily blessings of faith, food, family, and friends. Our acts of kindness, even when they go unnoticed, are pleasing.
The best ways to receive all that God has for us, to be “right” with Him, to glorify Him, is to praise Him with our mouth and do good. Lord may this be so.