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  • Allen Domelle

God’s Smell Test

Exodus 29:18

And thou shalt burn the whole ram upon the altar: it is a burnt offering unto the LORD: it is a sweet savour, an offering made by fire unto the LORD.

God was very interested in Israel keeping the burnt offering before Him. Every time they offered this burnt offering, God said that it was a sweet savour to Him. The word savour means an odor or a smell. In other words, God smelled the burnt offering that these people offered to Him, and it smelled good and pleasing to Him.

The offering in itself carried several actions that smelled good to God. These actions, if done by believers today, will pass God’s smell test of smelling sweet to Him. No, we are not talking about building an altar and offering a burnt offering to the LORD because Jesus is our burnt sacrifice, but we are talking about following the actions that this sacrifice meant to God. Let me share four actions this sacrifice represented.

First, it was an act of sacrifice. These people had to sacrifice of their own flock to offer this burnt offering to God. Sacrifice always passes God’s smell test. God is not a God of convenience but a God of sacrifice. If you are looking to only serve God in convenience with no sacrifice, you will never succeed in serving God. There is sacrifice in serving God. There is a sacrifice of self, desires, time, and even money when you choose to serve the LORD, but that sacrifice is a sweet smell to God.

Second, it was an act of prayer. God says that the prayers of the saints are a smoke of incense in Revelation 8:4. The fact that you would sacrifice time to talk to God is a sweet smell to God. I know that it is truly no sacrifice to pray, but in some sense, you are sacrificing time to pray. Every prayer you pray is a sweet savour to God. Never think that God does not smell your prayers. That sweet smell of the prayer of a saint in need is always before the LORD, and it pleases Him.

Third, it was an act of obedience. God would not have accepted the burnt offering had they not obeyed Him in every aspect that He commanded them to give it. God still expects obedience and enjoys the smell of the believer’s obedience. Just as God said to Saul that to obey is better than sacrifice in 1 Samuel 15:22, obedience still smells good to God. God loves sacrifice, but He prefers obedience more than anything else. Your obedience may not give you the result you wanted, but it will be a sweet savour to God.

Fourth, it was an act of devotion. Israel was saying they were devoted to God and His ways when they continually offered the burnt offering. God still looks for people who are wholly devoted to Him and His way. Too many people quit when they disagree or things don't turn out the way they wanted. Christianity needs a revival of devotedness to God, a devotedness that says quitting is never an option. You will never serve God your entire life if you are not devoted to Him. Many things will arise that will try to pull you from God, but you must say that you are devoted and committed to Him even when you disagree with how things have turned out.

Are your actions a sweet savour to God? Have your actions passed God’s smell test? I pray that your actions are such that God is constantly pleased with what you do and how you do it. Your greatest desire to accomplish each day should be to please God with your actions.


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