I came across a picture illustration that got me thinking. I’ll share the details with us. It had two animals on it; a lion and a deer. The lion was trying to catch and kill the deer for food, even as the deer kept running for its life. Written on the illustration was the lion’s prayer, God feed me. Followed by the deer’s prayer, God save me.
Then I thought, what will God do in a situation like this? Which prayer will He answer?
When faced with two conflicting opinions, scenarios or requests, one has to give way for the other or at least, one answered before the other. Our devotion flows from this premise.
What is an altar? It’s a place where sacrifices are made to change the outcome of events. On altars, valid exchanges are secured that alter the course of human life and history.
Let’s see examples of this in scripture.
2 Kings 3:26-27 KJV | “And when the king of Moab saw that the battle was too sore for him, he took with him seven hundred men that drew swords, to break through even unto the king of Edom: but they could not. Then he took his eldest son that should have reigned in his stead, and offered him for a burnt offering upon the wall. And there was great indignation against Israel: and they departed from him, and returned to their own land.”
Here, we see an ongoing battle. Only one prayer could be answered at that point. It was the sacrifice on the altar that determined which one.
Hezekiah was very ill and received a message from prophet Isaiah that he would die. Hear his cry.
Isaiah 38:3 NLT | “Remember, O Lord, how I have always been faithful to you and have served you single-mindedly, always doing what pleases you…”
Isaiah 38:4-6 NLT | “Then this message came to Isaiah from the Lord: “Go back to Hezekiah and tell him, ‘This is what the Lord, the God of your ancestor David, says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears. I will add fifteen years to your life, and I will rescue you and this city from the king of Assyria. Yes, I will defend this city.”
If you sacrifice in accordance with God’s Will, positive deal breakers await you in the future. And, that’s the key, in accordance with God’s Will.
Abel presented a sacrifice to God that looked small in the eyes of Cain, which is why he raged against the Lord and ultimately killed his brother. But, God was pleased with Abel and made his approval obvious because Abel heard His voice in His heart and offered a sacrifice in accordance with God’s Will. It wasn’t about the size or how it looked.
Hebrews 11:4 AMPC | “[Prompted, actuated] by faith Abel brought God a better and more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, because of which it was testified of him that he was righteous [that he was upright and in right standing with God], and God bore witness by accepting and acknowledging his gifts. And though he died, yet [through the incident] he is still speaking.”
The poor widow in Luke 21:1-4, put two mites in the offertory. On seeing this, Jesus taught His disciples that she gave the most because she gave all she had to live on. It wasn’t about the amount.
And, when Jesus surrendered to the desire of His father and gave His life in accordance with God’s Will, He received the name above all names.
Philippians 2:10-11 GNB | “…In honour of the name of Jesus all beings in heaven, on earth, and in the world below will fall on their knees, and all will openly proclaim that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
It’s a heart thing. Your heart is where you receive the instructions of God so you can make sacrifices in accordance with God’s Will. Hence, the need to guard it jealously. For by so doing, you keep the altar of your sacrifice alive and active. Hot enough for you to reference it on the day of trouble and get answers from the Lord.
When you fan the flames on your altar of sacrifice in accordance with God’s Will, He will respond to you.
Keep the flames on your altar alive. Keep the fire burning. Fan the flames of fire on your altar of sacrifice by always being attentive in your heart to the words of the Holy Spirit and responding in accordance with God’s Will.
Receive this grace in your heart. May God enlighten and help us all in Jesus name.