2 Corinthians 2:14 | The Smell of Victory

One of the best parts of the fall holidays, Thanksgiving and Christmas, are the smells. The smells trigger wonderful memories for me. I love the pine smell of a Christmas tree. I love the fire place smoke. I love the smells of the kitchen spices. It is a wonderful time of the year. I think if one were to walk into a home that is cooking something wonderful the smells alone can change the mood in a positive direction.

14 But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. 15 For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, 16 to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life. Who is sufficient for these things? 2 Corinthians 2:14-16 ESV

Paul in his letter to the Corinthians reminds them that they themselves are a sweet fragrance and a positive influence because they are infused with the aroma of Christ. Is there a person that walks into a room and you instantly feel more at ease? To others Paul says that Christians are the “fragrance of the knowledge of [God]” in every direction. We fill up the room with the smell of God. That presence flows to every corner of our influence. That aroma is noticeable and pervasive. People know when you have been with God. His love flows out of you in overflowing glory. Some hate that smell and others embrace it. So what is the smell that is so overwhelming? What is this fragrance? It is the “aroma of Christ” an incense burned up to God. Christ is the incense and we who are being saved are bathed in the atoning smoke.  

And Aaron shall burn fragrant incense on it. Every morning when he dresses the lamps he shall burn it, and when Aaron sets up the lamps at twilight, he shall burn it, a regular incense offering before the Lord throughout your generations. You shall not offer unauthorized incense on it, or a burnt offering, or a grain offering, and you shall not pour a drink offering on it. 10 Aaron shall make atonement on its horns once a year. With the blood of the sin offering of atonement he shall make atonement for it once in the year throughout your generations. It is most holy to the Lord.” Exodus 30:7-10 ESV

When we look at the history of the Old Testament everything prescribed and everything commanded by God was done to point toward Jesus and the perfect savior. The Priest would burn a specific type of incense as part of the temple duties before God as part of the sacrifice and sin covering attornment process. Jesus completed and fulfilled all those duties when he died on the cross for my sins and your sins.

Therefore, be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God. Ephesians 5:1-2 ESV

Jesus Christ became the burnt offering of attornment. Jesus Christ is the fragrant incense burning before God and those who are being saved are bathed in that smell. So therefore, be imitators of God. Be his representative on earth toward everyone around you. Smell like victory in Christ.

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