Don't Appear Before the Lord Empty
Deuteronomy 16:16-17, "Three times in a year shall all thy males appear before the LORD thy God in the place which he shall choose; in the feast of unleavened bread, and in the feast of weeks, and in the feast of tabernacles: and they shall not appear before the LORD empty: Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the LORD thy God which he hath given thee."
The laws for the three yearly feasts are here repeated; that of the Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles; and the general requirement concerning the people's attendance. Never should a believer forget where he has come from. God's grace provides freedom from guilt and misery, His gift of salvation wasn't free, but came with the greatest of cost to the Savior. We should rejoice in what we receive from God, and as we respond with gratitude in our service and sacrifice to Him; our duty must be our delight, as well as our enjoyment. If those who were under the law must rejoice before God, much more we that are under the grace of the gospel; which makes it our duty to rejoice evermore, to rejoice in the Lord always. All who make God their joy, may rejoice in hope, for He is faithful that has promised.
The greatest way for us to prove our love and adoration for Jesus is to make sure that we don't appear before Him empty. Worship is characterized with thanksgiving, and giving of ourselves and our substance back to the Lord is at the heart of true worship. Romans 12:1, "I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service." Matthew Henry states, "We receive from the Lord every day the fruits of his mercy. Let us render ourselves; all we are, all we have, all we can do: and after all, what return is it for such very rich receiving’s? It is acceptable to God: a reasonable service, which we are able and ready to give a reason for, and which we understand."
Make sure to always bring something of value that you can present to God as a token of your love and worship of Him.
Your Friend and HIS,
QUESTIONS TO PONDER
1. For what three things from God are you most thankful?
2. How does God's mercy minister to your heart?
3. Are you giving according to your ability, or are you content in coming to God empty handed?
4. According to Romans 12:1 what is your reasonable service?