Only one adequate plan has ever appeared in the world, and that is the Christian dispensation.
John Jay - First US Supreme Court Chief Justice
Wednesday's Word: What's That Smell?

Wednesday's Word

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Monday, October 29, 2012

What's That Smell?

Hello All,

It may not be particularly familiar to you, but there’s a fairly common conversation that goes into the “dullness” of our senses due to the fall. The discussion promotes the idea that we as individuals, as well as the world in general, exist in a kind of “oxidized” state; That if it wasn’t for the taint of sin, we would be able to see more clearly, have a more keen sense of hearing and smell. We’d be able to taste on a more varied and intense level. The conversation usually leads to the idea of how much more absolutely horrible hell will be due to the enhanced sensitivity to pain. Yeah, definitely not a happy thought. But my thoughts today aren’t on hell. Actually, I was thinking that the same enhanced sensory abilities already exist in Heaven. I had an incident a few years back, involving Zicam nasal spray – NEVER use the Zicam nasal spray! I temporarily seared my sense of smell and couldn’t smell a thing; neither cologne nor burning pot on the stove. What a horrible time that was. I was actually scared of what life would be without even my sinfully dulled sense of smell. Interesting thing about the sense of smell in comparison to the other senses; To see something, you have to actively look , to feel, you have to put out your hand or come in physical contact. Hearing comes easy enough, but to discern, you have to focus your listening. But smelling comes without much effort at all.

Let’s take a contrasting look: Ever thought about God’s sense of smell? If your average person can recognize 10,000 different odors, and dogs have 20 times more smell receptors than humans; imagine God’s sense of smell. Not that a tomato REALLY REALLY smells like a tomato to God, but that He can smell things we simply can’t. Where we can smell cotton candy or baking bread, God can literally smell love and it’s as distinctive a smell as any other emotion; where most of us enjoy the smell of salt air blowing in from the ocean, God enjoys the smell of righteousness. Most of what you’ll find in the Bible regarding smell or the word “savour”, centers on the sacrifice system in Leviticus. But here’s a reference I also found interesting.

Here’s the Word:

Exodus 30:34-36 And the Lord said unto Moses, Take unto thee sweet spices, stacte, and onycha, and galbanum; these sweet spices with pure frankincense: of each shall there be a like weight: And thou shalt make it a perfume, a confection after the art of the apothecary, tempered together, pure and holy: And thou shalt beat some of it very small, and put of it before the testimony in the tabernacle of the congregation, where I will meet with thee: it shall be unto you most holy.

God gave Moses a recipe for a perfume that He enjoys. And not only that, If you read further, He commanded that this scent be meant only for Him and no one else.

Understanding that burnt offerings were meant to please God with a “sweet smell”; The first chapter of Isaiah chronicles how the Nation of Israel had turned away from God and how their disobedience spoiled the smell of their worship and burnt offerings. Scripturally, we know God prefers obedience over sacrifice. I bet obedience smells better than a sacrifice tainted with pride and unrepentant sin.

Isaiah 1:15 And when ye spread forth your hands, I will hide mine eyes from you: yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood. Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.

Ephesians 5:2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.

When we’re trying to humbly conduct our lives, motivated by the empowering love from and a fervent love for Jesus Christ (even when it’s hard and everything in our “old man” is trying to get our old way), I imagine it’s the best “smell” we can offer: A smell that reminds the Father of His dear Son. So keep that in mind when you consider the things you “do” for God; especially as often as we approach God in prayer. Do you imagine Him drawing in a deep smell and as He exhales, you hear the faint sigh "...Ahhhhhh ...My Son!" Or does an odor show up unannounced provoking a disdainful squint and the snappy quip of a question: What’s that smell?

In Him,


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