In Old Testament times, when a burnt offering is killed, its head is severed, the fat removed, and the entrails and legs washed. Then, everything is placed on an altar and burnt, and the sacrifice is a sweet aroma to God.
All this speaks of the death of Jesus, who has “given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma” (Ephesians 5:2).
The head of the sacrificed animal speaks of the mind of Christ offered as a covering for our minds. This means that although our minds are often clouded with unbelief, worries, foolishness, filth and human reasoning, God treats us as if we have the mind of Christ, without wrong or displeasing thoughts, bringing pleasure to Him like a sweet aroma.
The fat of the animal speaks of the riches of Christ, His best, for God equates the fat of something with the best of that entity (see Genesis 45:18). The fat of the burnt sacrifice speaks of Jesus giving us His riches, His best, as our covering. So God does not see us in our lack, but in the riches and excellence of Jesus going up to Him as a sweet aroma.
The entrails or intestines speak of Jesus’ motivations, feelings, affections and desires. We often feel fearful, anxious, stressed out or angry (and it affects our stomach and intestines). But God sees only Jesus’ feelings and desires, which are always pure, beautiful and acceptable to Him—a sweet aroma.
The legs refer to Jesus’ perfect walk—His power to serve and obey the Father—imputed to our weak and faltering walk. And the fact they are washed shows that even our crooked walk has been cleansed.
Beloved, God does not see your foolish mind, weak nature, inadequate feelings or faulty walk. Instead, He sees you in the perfection of His Son, who gave Himself up for you as a sweet-smelling sacrifice to God.
© Copyright Joseph Prince, 2008–2019
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