“Make an altar of acacia wood for burning incense. Aaron must burn fragrant incense on the altar every morning when he tends the lamps.” (Exodus30:1, 7)
Incense came to be a symbol of prayer and indicated the delight God feels in receiving our prayers (Psalms 141:2; Rev 5:8). The continual burning of incense represented Israel’s prayers constantly before God. The (Levitical 1:17) whole burnt offering was an “aroma pleasing to the Lord.”
In the New Testament, Christ is a “fragrant offering” to God (Ephesians 5:2), and Christians are “the aroma of Christ” to God. (2nd Corinthians 2:15)
PRAYER FOR THE DAY:
Precious Abba, Your direction to Aaron was specific for You, as the aroma was pleasing to You, as you delighted in our prayers. Later, after Jesus arrived on this earth and began His ministry, the aroma represented a fragrant offering to You and we became the aroma of Christ. Help us to deserve these blessed representations always in a positive way, for we serve only You. It is in Jesus’ name we pray. Amen
THOUGHT OF THE DAY:
“Our spirituality is like an airplane ride, the higher we rise the smaller things on earth become.”
“At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: ‘Naked I cam from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.’” (Job 1:20-23)
God permits life’s tragedies but cannot be blamed for doing wrong. Human wisdom can never fully understand God’s reasons. Human faith must accept God’s goodness and love. Job was not aware of he conversation between God and Satan. Suddenly messenger after messenger arrived to tell Job that, “fire fell from the sky and burned up his sheep and servants or the Chaldeans raided and took all of his camels, and so on. Still Job refused to believe these tragedy’s were from God.
Job expressed profound faith In God. He followed ancient custom of ascribing everything that happens to the work of God. In this, Job praised God and declared that He had done nothing wrong. Other biblical passages help us to recognize that God is not the immediate cause of all things, for God only does that which is right or good in the final analysis. God remains in control and permits things to happen whether the immediate cause is human free choice or Satanic powers. God had allowed the condition in which Satan would bring evil on Job, but knew everything would eventually lead to the accomplishment of His purposes.
So the Israelites who had returned from the exile ate it, together with all who had separated themselves from the unclean practices of their Gentile neighbors in order to seek the Lord, the God of Israel. For seven days they celebrated with joy the Feast of Unleavened Bread, because the Lord had filled them with joy by changing the attitude of the king of Assyria, so that he assisted them in the work on the house of God, the God of Israel. (Ezra6:21-22)
In the first year of Cyrus, king of Persia, at the urging by Jeremiah, issued a proclamation that opened the doorway for the Exiles to return home. He issued this proclamation, and though it was somewhat lost for awhile, was later found and used to not only allow the Exiled Israelites, but it also led to restoration of The Temple worship clothing for the priests as well as all of the utensils of the Temple, including chalices, cups, plates, etc.., that had also been take when the Israelites were gathered up and taken out of their country.
God requires separation and purity in worship. To seek God is to forsake all other deities and worship the One True God.
SECOND THOUGHT of the DAY:
“Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth. The woman said, ‘I know that Messiah’ (Called Christ) ‘is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.’ Then Jesus declared, ‘I who speak to you am he.’”(John 4:23-26)
Human controversies over proper places and times of worship lost their meaning in Jesus’ coming. He introduced a new time, a new critical opportunity for decision into history. His coming was the decisive moment in the history of worship, leading all worshipers directly to the Father in spirit rather than material dominated sacrificial ritual.
The opposite of spirit is flesh. Worship is not a performance to bring pride to those performing, be they preachers, singers, or laypersons. It is not performed for the sake of the performers or participants. It is an offering to God and must be done in that which is hidden, the spirit. The opposite of truth is falsehood. Worship must be genuine. Prayer pervades true worship seeking fellowship with God. Even the Samaritan woman shared the messianic hope of Israel. Jesus used the Old Testament language about God in accepting the designation as Messiah, and what he admitted to the Samaritans, was that which he had kept secret from the Jews.