Sacrifice those gods in your life

Friends in Christ,  
In the Book of Exodus, we see how our ancestors were set free from the bondage of Egypt.  Moses guided them through the Red Sea,  then through the desert – to Mt. Sinai.  But while Moses was on Mt. Sinai speaking to God – while he was gone, the people fell back into their old sins – into idolatry. They made the Golden Calf and worshiped it.    

After this sin of the Golden Calf,  God instituted the entire system of temple sacrifices:  the sacrifice of cattle, sheep, and goats. Why?   What was the purpose of these animal sacrifices?   

Well, Israel had lived for a long time in Egypt,  and those pagan ways were deeply rooted in the people;  this is why they quickly returned to idol worship.   

Just like us; we have perhaps conquered a past sinful habit,  we are going along fine, we’ve left the slavery of Egypt,  but then comes the temptation to return to our old sin,  and there we go –   This is what the people did.

Perhaps the greatest rabbi in history, Maimonides,  says that the Egyptians worshiped: cattle, sheep, and goats – these were their gods, among others.  The greatest crime in Egypt would have been to dishonor or harm those gods, the cattle-god or the goat-god for example.  

So the Lord gives the command to Israel,  that they will now, day after day, slaughter cattle, sheep, and goats, and offer them up. Killing these gods daily, will be a reminder, that their former ways of idolatry can never save them.  This they would do for 1400 years.  

These temple sacrifices, which were symbols, they ended when Christ came.  Jesus has come, and gives his life for us, so that we will have the power to drive the idols out of our life. The Lord says, ‘I do not delight in the blood of bulls, or lambs, or goats. Rather, ‘cease to do evil. (Isaiah 1:11)  

So it is not slaughtered animals that must die  in order to drive “Egypt” out of our souls.  It is ourselves who must die to the idols in our life. Therefore, we offer spiritual sacrifices to God.   The best spiritual sacrifice we can make, is when we are tempted to sin, to immediately pray.  We stop what we are doing, for a moment,  and we ask for help from the Lord.   Then we bring these spiritual sacrifices and offer them here at Mass with the True Golden Calf –  Jesus Christ.   

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