At the Riggan Ranch we have ten baby lambs right now, all just a few weeks old. It’s always entertaining watching them scamper around the pasture – never getting far from their mothers, of course.

lambThroughout the Old Testament, God’s people made sacrifices to God. They continually offered bulls, goats, lambs, birds, grains – all to “pay” for their sins. If you sinned – even unintentionally – you had to make a sacrifice. It was a very straightforward (if bloody) system.

Can you imagine what it would be like if we still offered sacrifices today? You tell a lie, or maybe covet your neighbor’s new Volvo . . . and now you have to go out to your herd and pick out your best (spotless) lamb or goat and take it to the priests to sacrifice.

At what point would it occur to you that maybe you should try to stop lying or coveting? The tenth lamb? The hundredth?

The point of all of this was so that God’s people would really understand one thing: sin costs.

Our sins still come at a high price, but God Himself has provided a lamb (Genesis 22:8) – the One John the Baptist referred to as “the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world” (John 1:29).

I know that I can be too casual about my sin – and I’m sure I’m not alone in that. May we  begin to grasp the cost of our sins – and the great value of what Christ Jesus did for us on the cross.

“You were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot.” (1 Peter 1:18-19 ESV)

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3 Responses to SIN COSTS

  1. Scott Riggan says:

    Sharon, I’m with you. And yeah, apparently it takes something shocking to force us to accept how ugly our sin really is. Thanks for your comment.

    Thomas, I totally get your reluctance to accept that God would demand such seemingly random cruelty. I hope it helps to see it as a lesson on the incredible cost of sin. Thanks for sharing your struggle.

  2. Thomas Maher says:

    I’ve struggled for years with the idea of why God would have ever commanded such a brutal sacrificial system. Your thoughts on this are helpful, but it’s still hard to reconcile. I’d never thought of it this way though, and it makes more sense than the “God must really like blood” explanation I’ve always wondered about.

  3. Sharon says:

    I can’t even imagine what sacrificing animals was like. Makes me shudder, honestly. Sometimes it feels like the little sins we commit every day aren’t really a big deal, but this will help remind me that all sin is ugly and costly. Thanks for a great post!

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