Wednesday, December 23, 2015

A Perfect Gift for God at Christmas

Today’s Epistle Reading: St. Paul's Letter to the Hebrews 10:1-18 -  BRETHREN, since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices which are continually offered year after year, make perfect those who draw near. Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered? If the worshipers had once been cleansed, they would no longer have any consciousness of sin. But in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sin year after year. For it is impossible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sins. Consequently, when he came into the world, he said, "Sacrifices and offerings thou hast not desired, but a body hast thou prepared for me; in burnt offerings and sin offerings thou hast taken no pleasure. Then I said, 'Lo, I have come to do thy will, O God,' as it is written of me in the roll of the book." When he said above, "Thou hast neither desired nor taken pleasure in sacrifices and offerings and burnt offerings and sin offerings" (these are offered according to the law), then he added, "Lo, I have come to do thy will." He abolishes the first in order to establish the second. And by that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins. But when this one had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, then to wait until his enemies should be made a stool for his feet. For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are sanctified. And the Holy Spirit also bears witness to us; for after saying, "This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the Lord: I will put my laws on their hearts, and write them on their minds," then he adds, "I will remember their sins and their misdeeds no more." Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin.

In the Old Testament, when someone wanted to thank God for a blessing they had received, they went to the temple and made an offering. There were many sorts of offerings which you can read about in the Old Testament. But with the coming of Christ, all these offerings were replaced with one perfect offering. The Eucharist, the Body of Blood of Christ, has replaced any and all offerings made in the Old Testament as the perfect offering, the perfect way to say thank you to God, the perfect way to seek His blessings, the perfect way to be in Communion with Him, the perfect way to Live A New Life In Christ. Do you have a reason to be thankful this year at Christmas? Attend Divine Liturgy, the sacrifice of all sacrifices, the Precious Body and Blood of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is the perfect gift for God at Christmas.

No comments: