|“Your eternal gain will be proportional to your temporal commitment.” Walter A. Henrichsen (“Walt”)
Thoughts from the Diary of a Desperate Man by Walter A Henrichsen (“Walt”)
The Sacrifice of Praise
“By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.” Hebrews 13:15
What do you give to someone who has everything? What do you offer to God who has no need? The Psalmist addresses this question: God says that He owns all. “If I were hungry, I would not tell you, for the world is Mine and the fulness thereof.”68 Although He has no needs, He does say that there exits one thing He desires. “Offer unto God thanksgiving.” He delights in the “sacrifice of praise.”
Thanksgiving becomes a sacrifice when, in the midst of your hurts and disappointments, you affirm His goodness. You delight the heart of God when you don’t feel grateful and yet thank Him. People and circumstances cause pain when they impact you in ways contrary to your expectations. Life is full of such hurts. It is easy, even natural, to thank God for that which you perceive to benefit
you. To believe that pain comes from a benevolent God showing love, and to give Him thanks for that pain, this reflects the kind of faith that pleases Him.
Thus He calls it “the sacrifice of praise.” A sacrifice costs, else it is not sacrificial. When you give the Lord thanks in the midst of your pain you affirm His goodness. During such times you do not want to thank Him; you want to question His goodness, for why does a loving, caring God inflict pain? Content that you can never answer the question “why?”, you rest in the character of God. He is good. All of His designs toward you are good. For this reason, you “offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of your lips giving thanks to His
68 Psalm 50:12
Leviticus 11-12 Matthew 26:1-25 (New King James Version)
Foods Permitted and Forbidden
11 Now the Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying to them, 2 “Speak to the children of Israel, saying, ‘These are the animals which you may eat among all the animals that are on the earth: 3 Among the animals, whatever divides the hoof, having cloven hooves and chewing the cud—that you may eat. 4 Nevertheless these you shall not eat among those that chew the cud or those that have cloven hooves: the camel, because it chews the cud but does not have cloven hooves, is [a]unclean to you; 5 the [b]rock hyrax, because it chews the cud but does not have cloven hooves, is [c]unclean to you; 6 the hare, because it chews the cud but does not have cloven hooves, is unclean to you; 7 and the swine, though it divides the hoof, having cloven hooves, yet does not chew the cud, isunclean to you. 8 Their flesh you shall not eat, and their carcasses you shall not touch. They are unclean to you.
9 ‘These you may eat of all that are in the water: whatever in the water has fins and scales, whether in the seas or in the rivers—that you may eat. 10 But all in the seas or in the rivers that do not have fins and scales, all that move in the water or any living thing which is in the water, they are[d]an abomination to you. 11 They shall be an abomination to you; you shall not eat their flesh, but you shall regard their carcasses as an abomination. 12 Whatever in the water does not have fins or scales—that shall be an abomination to you.
13 ‘And these you shall regard as an abomination among the birds; they shall not be eaten, they are an abomination: the eagle, the vulture, the buzzard, 14 the kite, and the falcon after its kind; 15 every raven after its kind, 16 the ostrich, the short-eared owl, the sea gull, and the hawk after its kind; 17 the little owl, the fisher owl, and the screech owl; 18 the white owl, the jackdaw, and the carrion vulture; 19 the stork, the heron after its kind, the hoopoe, and the bat.
20 ‘All flying insects that creep on all fours shall be an abomination to you. 21 Yet these you may eat of every flying insect that creeps on allfours: those which have jointed legs above their feet with which to leap on the earth. 22 These you may eat: the locust after its kind, the destroying locust after its kind, the cricket after its kind, and the grasshopper after its kind. 23 But all other flying insects which have four feet shall be an abomination to you.
24 ‘By these you shall become [e]unclean; whoever touches the carcass of any of them shall be unclean until evening; 25 whoever carries part of the carcass of any of them shall wash his clothes and be unclean until evening: 26 The carcass of any animal which divides the foot, but is not cloven-hoofed or does not chew the cud, is unclean to you. Everyone who touches it shall be unclean. 27 And whatever goes on its paws, among all kinds of animals that go on all fours, those are unclean to you. Whoever touches any such carcass shall be unclean until evening. 28 Whoever carries any such carcass shall wash his clothes and be unclean until evening. It is unclean to you.
29 ‘These also shall be unclean to you among the creeping things that creep on the earth: the mole, the mouse, and the large lizard after its kind; 30 the gecko, the monitor lizard, the sand reptile, the sand lizard, and the chameleon. 31 These are unclean to you among all that creep. Whoever touches them when they are dead shall be unclean until evening. 32 Anything on which any of them falls, when they are dead shall be [f]unclean, whether it is any item of wood or clothing or skin or sack, whatever item it is, in which any work is done, it must be put in water. And it shall be unclean until evening; then it shall be clean. 33 Any earthen vessel into which any of them falls you shall break; and whatever is in it shall be unclean: 34 in such a vessel, any edible food upon which water falls becomes unclean, and any drink that may be drunk from it becomes unclean. 35 And everything on which a part of any such carcass falls shall be unclean; whether it is an oven or cooking stove, it shall be broken down; for they are unclean, and shall be unclean to you. 36 Nevertheless a spring or a cistern, in which there is plenty of water, shall be clean, but whatever touches any such carcass becomes unclean. 37 And if a part of any such carcass falls on any planting seed which is to be sown, it remains clean. 38 But if water is put on the seed, and if a part of any suchcarcass falls on it, it becomes [g]unclean to you.
39 ‘And if any animal which you may eat dies, he who touches its carcass shall be unclean until evening. 40 He who eats of its carcass shall wash his clothes and be unclean until evening. He also who carries its carcass shall wash his clothes and be unclean until evening.
41 ‘And every creeping thing that creeps on the earth shall be [h]an abomination. It shall not be eaten. 42 Whatever crawls on its belly, whatever goes on all fours, or whatever has many feet among all creeping things that creep on the earth—these you shall not eat, for they are an abomination. 43 You shall not make [i]yourselves [j]abominable with any creeping thing that creeps; nor shall you make yourselves unclean with them, lest you be defiled by them. 44 For I am the Lord your God. You shall therefore consecrate yourselves, and you shall be holy; for I am holy. Neither shall you defile yourselves with any creeping thing that creeps on the earth. 45 For I am the Lord who brings you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God. You shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.
46 ‘This is the law [k]of the animals and the birds and every living creature that moves in the waters, and of every creature that creeps on the earth, 47 to distinguish between the unclean and the clean, and between the animal that may be eaten and the animal that may not be eaten.’ ”
The Ritual After Childbirth
12 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 2 “Speak to the children of Israel, saying: ‘If a woman has conceived, and borne a male child, then she shall be [l]unclean seven days; as in the days of her customary impurity she shall be unclean. 3 And on the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin shall be circumcised. 4 She shall then continue in the blood of her purification thirty-three days. She shall not touch any [m]hallowed thing, nor come into the sanctuary until the days of her purification are fulfilled.
5 ‘But if she bears a female child, then she shall be unclean two weeks, as in her customary impurity, and she shall continue in the blood of herpurification sixty-six days.
6 ‘When the days of her purification are fulfilled, whether for a son or a daughter, she shall bring to the priest a lamb [n]of the first year as a burnt offering, and a young pigeon or a turtledove as a sin offering, to the door of the tabernacle of meeting. 7 Then he shall offer it before the Lord, and make [o]atonement for her. And she shall be clean from the flow of her blood. This is the law for her who has borne a male or a female.
8 ‘And if she is not able to bring a lamb, then she may bring two turtledoves or two young pigeons—one as a burnt offering and the other as a sin offering. So the priest shall make atonement for her, and she will be [p]clean.’ ”
The Plot to Kill Jesus
26 Now it came to pass, when Jesus had finished all these sayings, thatHe said to His disciples, 2 “You know that after two days is the Passover, and the Son of Man will be delivered up to be crucified.”
3 Then the chief priests, [a]the scribes, and the elders of the people assembled at the palace of the high priest, who was called Caiaphas, 4 and plotted to take Jesus by [b]trickery and kill Him. 5 But they said, “Not during the feast, lest there be an uproar among the people.”
The Anointing at Bethany
6 And when Jesus was in Bethany at the house of Simon the leper, 7 a woman came to Him having an alabaster flask of very costly fragrant oil, and she poured it on His head as He sat at the table. 8 But when His disciples saw it, they were indignant, saying, “Why this waste? 9 For this fragrant oil might have been sold for much and given to the poor.”
10 But when Jesus was aware of it, He said to them, “Why do you trouble the woman? For she has done a good work for Me. 11 For you have the poor with you always, but Me you do not have always. 12 For in pouring this fragrant oil on My body, she did it for My burial. 13 Assuredly, I say to you, wherever this gospel is preached in the whole world, what this woman has done will also be told as a memorial to her.”
Judas Agrees to Betray Jesus
14 Then one of the twelve, called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests 15 and said, “What are you willing to give me if I deliver Him to you?” And they counted out to him thirty pieces of silver. 16 So from that time he sought opportunity to betray Him.
Jesus Celebrates Passover with His Disciples
17 Now on the first day of the Feast of the Unleavened Bread the disciples came to Jesus, saying to Him, “Where do You want us to prepare for You to eat the Passover?”
18 And He said, “Go into the city to a certain man, and say to him, ‘The Teacher says, “My time is at hand; I will keep the Passover at your house with My disciples.” ’ ”
19 So the disciples did as Jesus had directed them; and they prepared the Passover.
20 When evening had come, He sat down with the twelve. 21 Now as they were eating, He said, “Assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me.”
22 And they were exceedingly sorrowful, and each of them began to say to Him, “Lord, is it I?”
23 He answered and said, “He who dipped his hand with Me in the dish will betray Me. 24 The Son of Man indeed goes just as it is written of Him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good for that man if he had not been born.”
25 Then Judas, who was betraying Him, answered and said, “Rabbi, is it I?”
He said to him, “You have said it.”
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Mark 11:24 24Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in Prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.
Colossians 4:2 2Devote yourselves to Prayer, being watchful and thankful.
James 5:16 16Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The Prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
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