Lame Offerings

The book of Malachi is God’s complaint with his children. He begins it in a strong way and no doubt it shook the people.  Malachi prophesied 400 years before the birth of Christ. After his book there is silence from heaven until the message came from Gabriel to Mary and the shepherds.

There was a problem for God to address with his people, a spiritual problem in their relationship with him. This brings me to ask:  Are you doing what God wants? Are you giving what God wants? I’m not talking about tithes and offerings, although that’s part of it. Don’t rob God of his tenth.  God is not as much interested in substance as other ways. We don’t win his affection that way. It is simply another way, along with obedience, to show God your love. Read the Bible. Attend church. Say prayers.  It’s great that you do that. What about your attitude? We’ve got the aptitude but are we doing what we should and with the right heart?

God was ashamed of his people. They brought lame offerings. Lame means crippled or broken down. A lame excuse doesn’t cut it with your spouse does it. Neither does a lame offering to God. How sincere is your service? Who do you give glory to? How do you feel toward God? Are you having trouble with your spiritual life? We have to address this honestly.  God asked for the right things. He asked for his house to be honored and that he be loved and trusted. Then he would bless as in days gone by.

Malachi 1:13 Ye said also, Behold, what a weariness is it! and ye have snuffed at it, saith the Lord of hosts; and ye brought that which was torn, and the lame, and the sick; thus ye brought an offering: should I accept this of your hand? saith the Lord. 14 But cursed be the deceiver, which hath in his flock a male, and voweth, and sacrificeth unto the Lord a corrupt thing: for I am a great King, saith the Lord of hosts, and my name is dreadful among the heathen.

Lame offerings. How could Israel do that? God required the best. He had blessed them all with animals. When he set up the offerings, the families were not to bring leftovers or extras or what they could do without.  God was trying to get them to think. They would all have to raise their hands to affirm they had a male in their flock. How many of us have what God wants? God didn’t ask for the whole flock but one male for sacrifice to him. Are we giving God what he really wants? We may not have animals but look at what God has provided to us. He’s good to us. We have new blessings every day and yesterday’s are growing. We have a good mind. We’re able to comprehend God’s Word. We have the ability to get out and the means to do it. We may not be able to buy a lot but we can buy enough. Bills are provided for. We have more resources than we realize and God wants us to offer them to him. He doesn’t want all we have. If he asked for everything, he would be deserving of it. He allows us to make choices. He’s given us a life. We can give God his portion. He asks and requires so small in comparison to what he gives. Are we surrendering what God wants? If he is our Father, where is his honor? If he is our Lord, our Master, where is his fear?

This is not about getting everything just right. We like to pat ourselves for what we do for God. For every time we’ve done well, we’ve not done it right many times. We’ve been afraid of others and not stood up for the right thing. We can’t sit back and brag on ourselves.  Do you love God as you should? Do you fear him as you should? As your Father, do you honor him as you should? We call him Lord but is he the master of our life or are we?

God showed his people the answer to the questions. They were giving lame offerings. They could not do without God. We can do without him as Father, Savior, and Lord. He’s the person of our faith. Take a look at what you’re giving the Lord. Is it lame? Giving him seconds? Seconds are only good in food. God wants our first. He’s not a second Lord or second Father. He doesn’t want to be in the background of our lives.

How much do you love God?  How much do you honor God? Who is first in your life? What you offer God reveals your heart.  Our prayer should be, Father, help me to truly and rightly honor you. Teach me to properly fear you and live my life as an offering that is pleasing to you.

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