Forgiveness Without Sacrifice – Part 01

Forgiveness Without Sacrifice – Part 01

Lamb of God

Lamb of God

This Bible study series looks at several instances where a person’s faith was all that was needed to forgive their sins. There was no need to sacrifice an animal. Forgiveness was given by God as a gift of grace. The first instance occurs in Genesis 15.

This was more than 400 years before the Biblical account of the handing down of the laws affecting the sacrifice of an animal as a means of receiving forgiveness. Abram (Abraham) was forgiven. He had been troubled that he had no offspring. When God told him that he would, he believed in God. In Genesis 15:6 we are told:

6. Then he believed in the LORD; and He reckoned it to him as righteousness.

Righteousness is a state free of sin. God granted it to Abraham simply because he believed.

It was only when Abraham began to doubt the second part of the promise, of possessing the land, that God allowed him to return to his former pagan ways of sacrificing animals. However, it is clear from Genesis 15:6 that Abram was forgiven and considered as being righteous before his doubt set in.

Furthermore, the only result of the animal sacrifices (Genesis 15:8-21) was the confirmation that Abram (Abraham) would possess the land. It had nothing to do with forgiveness or the need for forgiveness.

If he had simply believed this portion of God’s promise, too, it would still have come to pass without the animal sacrifices.

Go on to Forgiveness Without Sacrifice – Part 02

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5 Responses to Forgiveness Without Sacrifice – Part 01

  1. avatar
    kathy dunn January 28, 2013 at 9:34 pm #

    Thank you for these studies! They mean a lot to me!

    Question, it is not on this study per say, but related to the topic – In 1Tim 4 (KJV), given that we know that God would rather we did not eat meat, what does this mean?:

    1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

    2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;

    3 Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.

    4 For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving:

    5 For it is sanctified by the word of God and prayer.

    Thanks for your insights.


    • avatar
      flhadmin January 28, 2013 at 10:19 pm #

      In Paul’s day, when he was trying to reach the Gentiles with the good news of Jesus Christ, he encountered many who ate meat sacrificed to idols, and many of the Jewish believers, refused to eat it or eat with them, because it was unclean, and against the Law. They did not object for reasons of compassion.

      Their actions were causing a rift in the church, which is the reason that Paul told Timothy to be aware of these things. We only wish he had said it more clearly to avoid confusion in this day and age.

      This passage is not speaking to those of us who truly believe and for reasons of compassion obstain from eating any animal foods.

      The term ‘meat’ in the KJV really means ‘food’.

      We hope this helps.

  2. avatar
    Daniel Salomon February 1, 2013 at 7:20 pm #

    Thanks for the ecological formation!

    I have found that I “get the land” when I treat it and all the animals who live on it with “dignity and respect.”

    Also, I contend that “sacrofice” is also a problematic concept when it is also applied by church leaders to groups of human beings.

    As a neurodiverse human I find this approach offensive and oppressive for who is determine who the sacrofice is? Why? How?

    As a Jewish Christian I find the “sacrofice” metaphor on the pagan side, not anything Judeo-Christian.

    In fact, such a notion is a left-over from paganism which saw “death as a part of life” and did not see “taking lives” as “morally signifigant” but just a “transfer of energy” or “chain of being.”

    In fact, in the mind of a pagan, they do not even see this as killing or violence.

    Such a view goes back to scapegoating!

    Such a view is far from dead in 2013!

    Thanks very much!

    • avatar
      flhadmin February 2, 2013 at 12:56 am #

      Dear Daniel: We agree. Thank you for your insight.

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