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Vicki Mottram

Obedience Is Better Than Sacrifice

Vicki Mottram (Sun, 08 Jul 2018)

Vicki spoke from 1 Samuel 15 about Saul and the Amelekites, but not in the way that God had told him to do.

Saul and the Amekalites (1 Sam 15)
Moses at Meribah (Numbers 20)

Sometimes the God we see in the Old Testament can seem harsh or petty. This is partly because He wants to get across the message that He is in charge, and we alter His instructions at our peril. When we tweak His instructions, we are taking charge, and saying to God that we know better than Him.

The OT has several overarching themes. One of them is the repeated cycle of the people slipping into meaningless ritual, and God, through the prophets, calling them back into relationship with Him. He has made us for relationship, but it is a relationship which we bring nothing to other than ourselves.

We can slip into 3 particular traps when it comes to dealing with obedience / sacrifice.
1. Trying to make it up to God when we have sinned by sacrificing, when Jesus has already paid for it all.
2. The repetitive cycle of sin and repentance, without change.
3. Slipping out of relationship and into meaningless ritual.

Questions

How does the OT portrayal of God differ from our own experience? Why is this?
What does “the fear of the Lord” mean to you?
Sometimes we are so uncomfortable with the absolute power imbalance between us and God that we do daft things to feel the gap has lessened? Can you think of any examples either from scripture or your own experience?

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