I did not just randomly choose this topic to study but the Lord told me to study on altars for God. As I look deep into it, I notice that building altars to worship God started quite early from the beginning of time.
Right thru out the Old Testament, men of God built altars for God as an act of worship, thanksgiving and adoration to Him. The Lord was pleased with their sacrifices and worship.
Whatever we spend time on, or concentrate on becomes an altar. Even today, every day we are building altars. Do you want to know what kind of altar you are building? Check your prayer life and your prayer points, check your mouth what is coming out of you? Praise or shortcomings, check your attitude and your focus, is it focussed around God or focussed around our personal needs?
When we build altars of praise for God, we are inviting His presence to come and do a work on earth as it is in heaven.
If we are not building altars for God, we are letting the enemy to be busy building his kingdom on earth.
Altars at the Tabernacle
In the Tabernacle of Moses, there were two alters one at the outer court, the brazen altar where all the sacrifices were made. And another one at the holy place, just before the curtain the golden altar of incense. This was not Moses’ idea but he built according to the picture that God showed him. “Make this tabernacle and all its furnishings exactly like the pattern I will show you.” (Exodus 25:9)
Today we have Jesus and his blood who was sacrificed to make us holy and to bring us close to God. “For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God…” (I Peter 3:18a). To study more and to understand His sacrifice, please read the whole chapter of Heb 10.
Jesus has finished the work by going to the cross, all human effort trying to be holy. “So Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many” (Heb 9:28)
Once we are made holy, we enter into the next level into the Holy place where the golden altar of incense is kept. The priests are to keep the incense going, burn them every morning and evening as a pleasing aroma to the Lord. It symbolises our prayers and intercessions. “May my prayer be set before you like incense; may the lifting up of my hands be like the evening sacrifice.” (Psalm 141:2).
We are His chosen people, the royal priesthood and He is desiring for us to intercede in His presence constantly.
Our work is not finished until the end of times. I was so encouraged when I read Revelation 8. Our prayers will all be collected by an angel and the smoke of it will rise before God.
All your prayers, intercessions and tears will go to Him as an incense.
“And another angel came and stood at the altar with a golden censer, and he was given much incense to offer with the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar before the throne, (4) and the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, rose before God from the hand of the angel.” (Rev 8:3,4)
When I read this, I said Lord, I want my prayers, intercession and tears for others, towards the nations to be part of that incense.
So none of your prayers will go in vain or the time that you spend interceding for others will be wasted. God will smell it like a sweet aroma and He will be pleased by it.
Make an altar of earth for me and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and fellowship offerings, your sheep and goats and your cattle. Wherever I cause my name to be honored, I will come to you and bless you. (Exo 20:24)
In the exact Hebrew translation, it says “Wherever I allow My name to be mentioned, I will come to you and bless you.” Whenever we mention and pray in the Name of Jesus, wherever we glorify His name, He will come down to bless us.