Psalm 40:6-8 “Sacrifice and offering You did not desire; my ears You have opened. Burnt offering and sin offering You did not require. Then I said, ‘Behold, I come; in the scroll of the book it is written of me. I delight to do Your will, O my God, and Your law is within my heart.’”
Wait. So God doesn’t want sacrifice or offering? He doesn’t require the burnt offerings and sin offerings that the Old Testament is full of? The Law of Moses was full of details of such offerings and sacrifices. It had every detail, how often they were required, how they were to be divided. It was very thorough.
So if God doesn’t desire or require these anymore what does He desire? I believe that God doesn’t want things that are ‘required’, what He really desires is our decision to follow Him. Our obedience out of love and not duty is what He is really looking for.
Psalm 51:16-17 “For You do not desire sacrifice, or else I would give it; You do not delight in burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, a broken and a contrite heart–these, O God, You will not despise.”
What He really wants is a broken and a contrite heart. It doesn’t seem very fun at first, but think of a stallion. A wild stallion isn’t good for anyone until it has been broken. Once he has been broken and submits willingly to the handler’s prompting, he is one of the most useful and beautiful animals. Who wants a horse that pulls at every turn and will buck you off if you give him half of a chance?
He wants us to come to that place of brokenness where we look to Him for where to go and what to do next. A well trained horse will not move until prompted. He wants a people that will do His will, who will move at His prompting and not without.
Going back to Psalm 40, verse eight says, “I delight to do Your will, O my God, and Your law is within my heart.” He wants a people that delight in His will. How? by putting His Word in our hearts. When we love His Word and let it live within our hearts, we will know and love His will. We will get used to hearing His voice because it will have the same tone as the Word.
Let’s love His Word and give Him the sacrifice He desires. Let’s delight in His will and learn to hear His voice. And lastly, let’s obey willingly when we feel the gentle nudge of the Spirit.