Saturday, September 22, 2007

This is the Day of Atonement

Grand Sweep Daily Reading: 11, 12, 13, 14

Exodus 30:10 (NIV)

10 Once a year Aaron shall make atonement on its horns. This annual atonement must be made with the blood of the atoning sin offering for the generations to come. It is most holy to the Lord.

Leviticus 27:28 (NIV)

28 But nothing that a man owns and devotes to the Lord – whether man or animal or family land – may be sold or redeemed; everything so devoted is most holy to the Lord.

I Peter 1:18-21 (NIV)

18 For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers; 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 20 He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake. 21 Through Him you believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and glorified Him, and so your faith and hope are in God.

Good morning!

This weekend, the twenty-four hour period beginning Friday evening at dusk and ending Saturday night is the most precious and holy moment celebrated in Jewish faith and tradition. Yom Kippur, also known as the Day of Atonement or Day of Indwelling, is a feast that is celebrated around the world. During this twenty-four hour period, the faithful gather in their synagogues and places of worship to confess and repent of their sin, to publicly forgive those who have sinned against them, and to love and honor the Great I Am. It is a time of remembrance when the blood of the Lamb placed over the door posts of their homes protected them from the Passover of the death angel in Egypt, and how God brought them out of slavery and into the Promised Land.

As Christians, we rejoice and celebrate in the Day of Atonement, remembering the sacrifice of the holy Lamb of God, perfect and sinless offering, who takes away the sins of the world. Jesus Christ, the sacrificial lamb, became the bridge gap between an imperfect humanity and perfect God. He is our kinsman redeemer; the way, the truth and the life. This day is a day for all believers everywhere. It is most holy to the Lord.

How will you spend your day of atonement? Will you set aside a time for personal devotion and prayer? What gift will you bring to the altar of the Lord? Moses commanded the people that no man should appear before the Lord empty-handed: each person must bring a gift in proportion to the way the Lord your God has blessed you. {Deuteronomy 16:17). Take some time to make a list today of all the ways God has blessed you, saves you, walks with you, provides for you, and loves you even when you least deserve it. What kind of gift would you give to the Lord who gives you new life?

This is a day to pray, to deny ourselves something of value that can be offered to the Lord with grateful appreciation for the things He has done. Can you find it in your heart to make amends with someone you dislike? Would you sacrifice a meal out, donating that money to feed someone around the world who is starving today? Are you willing to spend not just five minutes, but maybe five hours in prayer and praise to the Lamb of God, who purchased your soul on Calvary?

I would challenge every Christian to observe the Day of Atonement this weekend. If you have not been to worship for some time, this is the perfect weekend to come home. I promise the roof will not fall in on you. At Faith Church, there will be people waiting to shake your hand and welcome you to worship. If you are worried about coming alone, invite your family, bring a friend or neighbor to join you this weekend at church. The moment is now. This is the time to thank Jesus Christ for His redeeming love.

Grace and peace,

Deb Spaulding

Faith UMC - St. Charles, MO

Pray for: believers to join hearts and hands all over the world today, as we thank God for the Lamb who takes away our sin, and brings us into a right relationship with God. What gift will you offer to the Lord your God today?


© Copyright 2007, Deb Spaulding

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