I will not accept a bull from your house or goats from your folds. For every beast of the forest is mine, the cattle on a thousand hills. (Psalm 50:9-10 ESV)
We have a problem here; God is telling the Israelites that He won’t accept their sacrifices.
First of all, He owns the things they are trying to sacrifice to Him, and this can be a problem. Usually when we sacrifice, we are giving up something of our own and going without. However, it isn’t much of a sacrifice when you never really owned what you’re giving up in the first place. The Israelites had continued to sacrifice to God even though they weren’t really following Him, and that sacrifice beagn to seem like a tool for them to make God do what they wanted Him to do. The problem, of course, is that God doesn’t work that way.
Are you “sacrificing” something to God because you think it is what you must to do to make Him happy?
Examples might be volunteering at the church, waking up early to read your Bible, or something else very religious. These are all good things for us to do, but not when the wrong attitude is behind them. We can become like the Israelites and think we are giving something to God that He doesn’t already have. In reality He is the one who has given us these gifts of time, and these blessings in our opportunities to love and serve. We delight God when we give back to Him with a heart of thanksgiving, knowing that He is the ultimate gift giver.
Have you been giving with a heart of thanksgiving? Pray today that your heart would be in the right place, and that you might give with a humble spirit.