Sunday, June 1, 2014

Sweet or stinky?

We finished studying the book of Numbers in church on Sundays recently and our pastor talked about the sacrifices that the priests made on the altar. In the Old Testament, the priests burned the sacrifices on the altar, which were atonement for sins, as a sweet aroma to the Lord, and the sweet aroma pleased the Lord. Have you ever stepped outside and smelled the sweet smell of meat cooking on the BBQ grill? The Lord must love barbecue - hopefully, there will be barbecue when we get to heaven!

In the New Testament, Jesus' death was the atonement for our sin. Ephesians 5:2 says, "And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma." He only had to be sacrificed once for all of mankind's sins, unlike the Old Testament where sacrifices had to be made on a regular basis.Are you thankful for Jesus' sacrifice for your sins?

At the Second Coming, the Jews themselves will be the sweet smelling aroma to the Lord. Ezekiel 20:41 says: "I will accept you as a sweet aroma when I bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered, and I will be hallowed in you before the Gentiles."

We should be a sweet aroma to others as well, if we are truly in Christ. 2 Corinthians 2:15 and 16 says: "For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. To the one we are the aroma of death leading to death, and to the other the aroma of life leading to life. And who is sufficient for these things?" To fellow believers, we are the aroma of life through Jesus. To unbelievers, our sweet aroma reminds them that they are headed for hell unless they repent of their sins. To be a sweet aroma to others, we should walk in love, as referenced in the Ephesians verse above. We should be kind to one another helping and supporting each other, and respecting others. We should sacrifice ourselves for others.

The opposite of sweet is stinky. When we don't walk in love, we are angry, bitter and unloving. We don't care about others; we only care about ourselves. As believers, we don't want to be a stinky aroma to others. So take a look at yourself - are you a sweet or stinky aroma to others?

That's all for now. Thanks for reading!