I think a big part of what you are experiencing at Church Teresa is much more than just blending in with the crowd, so to speak. You hear nothing new at church because the churches have gotten to a point of static explanations of the religious experience. But there is far more going on inside the word than the untrained human eye can behold. On my site you are aware I am posing a similar question about this same phenomenon. Is the Christian experience following through with the deeper parts of scriptures or is it just skimming the surface with religious clichés that we accept as gospel?
Words like: propitiation, sanctified, anointed, salvation, ceremonially clean, and so much more. But what do they really mean? We have accepted them at dogmatic face value because we are taught this is the way to understand them because so much of the Bible is “unknowable” or that God’s ways are above our ways to such a degree that we can never fully understand them. But I am here to tell you that this is not true. I wouldn’t say that the churches are lying to us because that would infer malice in intent to mask its true meaning. The truth is we are so used to accepting that the Bible is filled with such great works and wonders of God that we are left in awe and then we fear to question what these things really mean to us as regular people… All of the things in scriptures do not have to be seen as some great unknowable mystery. They are just simply truths overweighed in mysticism that we cannot see clearly.
It’s like the meaning behind a sacrifice. Why sacrifice? Why give a life to gain favor? How barbaric a practice is it to sacrifice an animal to take the burden of sin and its guilt from you. Does this act actually take a sin away? Does it make things even one bit better for it? My guess is that in a real world the answer is no. No, killing something does not give you a purity in life in any sense of the word. But spiritually it does represents on a subconscious level an act of attrition. Let me try and explain this a little better on a more personal level. To do this we need to try and remove all religion and even God from the equation. Just by saying the word “God” it sets the mind in a set pattern of thinking and it clouds reason with fear, mysticism and wonder. But by seeing the act of a sacrifice in a practical setting you can understand the propitiation you posed your question about.
A sacrifice is actually a very regular act of life. The animal on the alter is, in fact, an attribute of yourself. The animal-self is a part of your spiritual/physical world and often understood as part of the ego. When your life is tested, as say, in a fire a change happens to your ego. The fire is simply the testing of your conscience in your everyday life with choices. Your life is being constantly tested by the choices you make. They are often trying and they also often riddle us with pangs of guilt, or fill us with pride and self-satisfaction, depending on the outcome of that choice made. But we make sacrifices all the time with the choices me make when dealing with others. So sacrificing an animal is actually offering up a part of your primitive-self for a self-testing. Your life is a constant balance of your ideal-self (Heaven=lofty) and your basic instincts that life has taught you works best for you (Earth=firm). This is the essence of heaven and earth. Your lofty ideal goals vs. the real hard firm truth that you know work in life. The animal vs. the angel within.
The ancient Egyptians once believed that the animals were actually representative of the casting-off of our clothing. Our outer garments in Scriptures represent the same attribute as a type of personality characteristic. You see it in every culture in their coat of arms or in their Kung Fu. Or you are presented with your animal guide or animal spirit… The animals are all symbolic attributes in you that each animal embodies. So a sacrifice of your animal is part of a purification process. By testing your nature you find out how close to God you are by seeing Him reflected inside your life. By finding that your sacrifice of yourself is found worthy you grow closer to a balanced life on a spiritual and personal level, thus making us more like God who masters the outer world, because we master our inner world in much the same way… Now we are meant to be a mirror of God on a personal basis, as we reflect His characteristics within ourselves. Benevolence, honor, love, mercy and so much more all grow within over time with each sacrifice me make. These are the God like qualities that our sacrifices teach us to embody.
Now the name of Jesus is also important here. His name is accepted to mean salvation or savior, but that too is infused with a sense of wonder and that religious complex immediately comes back to haunt us and limits our higher understanding. The name of our savior is best understood if we put it to the meaning it is meant to embody, and that is a freedom of the spirit. His name actually means freedom by means of emancipation. Freeing yourself from internal and personal bondage. So remember his name, for now, to simply mean Freedom.
Blood is used in the Bible many times to refer to life, or the life force in a creature or person. http://soulblindministry.com/2012/04/07/the-twilight-of-twilight/
By the blood of the lamb, our sins are washed clean.
The nature of a lamb is to follow in obedience and innocence. This is the sacrifice of life we most need to offer of ourselves! Offer up yourself on the altar of testing to purify your sins and take away your transgressions and guilt…. HOW? Test you obedience and purity each day in the fires and testing of life. Let the flames wash over you like a pot in a kiln, or a fine metal being smelted, because if you are not destroyed in this process you are then purified and strengthened by the process.
Again your outer garment is representative of your animal nature, but your under garment is the truth that covers up the shameful nakedness of your true self. Not a nakedness of the body but a nakedness of the soul, or your conscious understanding. Truth is the undergarment we wear that keeps us pure and holy. So washing your truth (your inner understanding) in the blood (the life essence) of the lamb (obedience and innocence) makes your truth become pure and clean, thus making your soul or consciousness become as though it were without the stain of guilt, or self-loathing.
Jesus is the lamb. So, FREEDOM is your salvation that comes through obedience and innocence. Free your ego by testing your purity, honesty and integrity, and this will make you feel clean inside on such a level that no other washing can clean… and thus this will remove the sinful stains of the soul… THIS is the truest essence of your propitiation. Washed clean in the blood of Jesus… Amen :)