Anglican Devotional 27 May 2023 – The Power Of Overwhelming Sacrifice

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The Daily Fountain Devotional of the Church Of Nigeria (Anglican Communion) 27 May 2023 – The Power Of Overwhelming Sacrifice

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TOPIC: The Power Of Overwhelming Sacrifice

READ: 1 Kings 8:54-9:9 (KJV)

54 And it was so, that when Solomon had made an end of praying all this prayer and supplication unto the Lord, he arose from before the altar of the Lord, from kneeling on his knees with his hands spread up to heaven.

55 And he stood, and blessed all the congregation of Israel with a loud voice, saying,

56 Blessed be the Lord, that hath given rest unto his people Israel, according to all that he promised: there hath not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by the hand of Moses his servant.

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57 The Lord our God be with us, as he was with our fathers: let him not leave us, nor forsake us:

58 That he may incline our hearts unto him, to walk in all his ways, and to keep his commandments, and his statutes, and his judgments, which he commanded our fathers.

59 And let these my words, wherewith I have made supplication before the Lord, be nigh unto the Lord our God day and night, that he maintain the cause of his servant, and the cause of his people Israel at all times, as the matter shall require:

60 That all the people of the earth may know that the Lord is God, and that there is none else.

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61 Let your heart therefore be perfect with the Lord our God, to walk in his statutes, and to keep his commandments, as at this day.

62 And the king, and all Israel with him, offered sacrifice before the Lord.

63 And Solomon offered a sacrifice of peace offerings, which he offered unto the Lord, two and twenty thousand oxen, and an hundred and twenty thousand sheep. So the king and all the children of Israel dedicated the house of the Lord.

64 The same day did the king hallow the middle of the court that was before the house of the Lord: for there he offered burnt offerings, and meat offerings, and the fat of the peace offerings: because the brasen altar that was before the Lord was too little to receive the burnt offerings, and meat offerings, and the fat of the peace offerings.

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65 And at that time Solomon held a feast, and all Israel with him, a great congregation, from the entering in of Hamath unto the river of Egypt, before the Lord our God, seven days and seven days, even fourteen days.

66 On the eighth day he sent the people away: and they blessed the king, and went unto their tents joyful and glad of heart for all the goodness that the Lord had done for David his servant, and for Israel his people.

9:1 And it came to pass, when Solomon had finished the building of the house of the Lord, and the king’s house, and all Solomon’s desire which he was pleased to do,

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2 That the Lord appeared to Solomon the second time, as he had appeared unto him at Gibeon.

3 And the Lord said unto him, I have heard thy prayer and thy supplication, that thou hast made before me: I have hallowed this house, which thou hast built, to put my name there for ever; and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually.

4 And if thou wilt walk before me, as David thy father walked, in integrity of heart, and in uprightness, to do according to all that I have commanded thee, and wilt keep my statutes and my judgments:

5 Then I will establish the throne of thy kingdom upon Israel for ever, as I promised to David thy father, saying, There shall not fail thee a man upon the throne of Israel.

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6 But if ye shall at all turn from following me, ye or your children, and will not keep my commandments and my statutes which I have set before you, but go and serve other gods, and worship them:

7 Then will I cut off Israel out of the land which I have given them; and this house, which I have hallowed for my name, will I cast out of my sight; and Israel shall be a proverb and a byword among all people:

8 And at this house, which is high, every one that passeth by it shall be astonished, and shall hiss; and they shall say, Why hath the Lord done thus unto this land, and to this house?

9 And they shall answer, Because they forsook the Lord their God, who brought forth their fathers out of the land of Egypt, and have taken hold upon other gods, and have worshipped them, and served them: therefore hath the Lord brought upon them all this evil.

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Israel experienced God’s glory in the temple dedication ceremony. Solomon first appealed to the Israelites to keep God’s commandments to obtain answered prayers (v.61). Solomon sacrificed twenty-two thousand bulls and twenty thousand sheep, numerous burnt, peace and grain offerings. He celebrated the festival for fourteen days. Israel happily ate, drank and blessed their king. The sacrificial offerings Solomon lavished attracted God to appear personally to him saying: “I have heard your prayers; I have hallowed this house” (1 Kings 9:3).

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Men of immense sacrifices and unalloyed obedience always attract God’s attention. It is unfortunate that many people sacrifice hours and huge resources for games, fashion, socio-cultural activities, social media, etc., but get irritated and infuriated when it comes to sacrifices and obedience to God. I was in a church many years ago when a man brought two hundred naira to the altar table to thank God for helping him to buy a car and I really marvelled. The car cost millions of naira and the owner brought 200 naira for thanksgiving prayers. That money was not enough to pump air in the car tyres. This is the kind of misnomer that characterises the life of some Christians. Beloved, a life of obedience and sacrifice yields much dividends with God. Therefore, possess these qualities so that God can positively respond to your calls.

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PRAYER: Take my silver and gold, O Lord.

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