The volcano issued its demand through billows of sulphurous clouds and spurts of fiery ash and rock; certainly the only way to appease the god was through sacrifice!
“If only this god would see how serious we are, how much we are willing to give, what we will deny ourselves in order to stay his hand from the wrath which will ensue should we do nothing!”
*enter stage left* the young, beautiful virgin, tied to a cot made of sticks.
The sacrifice is dropped, without regard, into the mouth of the monster.
Suddenly, the smoke stops.
The rumbling ceases.
As a voice, a cavernous sound, belches from the bowels of the volcano and releases a single syllable, “Nope.”
The villagers scream in terror as the rumbling begins anew, now with ten times the strength the smoke and fire erupt, driving those worshippers away from the mountain.
Back in the village, a scared native looks to the chief and demands,
“WHAT WILL IT TAKE TO APPEASE THIS GOD?!”
I’m certain that this is a scene from some movie somewhere (for any copyright infringements I apologize)! Aren’t you glad we don’t behave that way anymore? If we sacrificed a virgin every time there were a famine, blizzard, or tornado there would be a shortage of un-defiled young ladies for our virtuous men to seek!
Sadly, many Christians still hold to this logic in regards to their walk with God. They firmly believe that if they behave poorly by sinning or wrong thinking, God will love them less. Also, if they behave well, reading their Bibles, going to church frequently, somehow God will love them more.
This logic is flawed on SO many levels. How do we suppose that we are going to coerce God into loving us more than sending His Son to die for us while we were His enemies? How can we make Him love us more? For that matter… how can we make Him do anything?
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. Romans 8:1 NKJV
I’ve got great news, as a believer and follower of Jesus, not only can you not make God love you more, but neither can you make God love you less!
This isn’t a license to sin (we will still receive temporal punishment for our sins) but it is a license to LIVE freely in the warmth of unconditional love. It motivates us to love other people, to live for God, and to worship with abandonment.
We aren’t very familiar with unconditional love, it’s a foreign concept to many of us because so many base their capacity to love others according to how they’re treated.
If you’re a follower of Jesus,
stop trying to appease God.
Live freely for Him
and love others in the way that He has loved you,