The Meaning of Sacrifice

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#152: “The Meaning of Sacrifice”
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Scripture
1 Samuel 15:19-22
19Why did you not obey the LORD? Why did you pounce on the plunder and do evil in the eyes of the LORD?"20"But I did obey the LORD," Saul said. "I went on the mission the LORD assigned me. I completely destroyed the Amalekites and brought back Agag their king.21The soldiers took sheep and cattle from the plunder, the best of what was devoted to God, in order to sacrifice them to the LORD your God at Gilgal."22But Samuel replied: "Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as much as in obeying the voice of the LORD? To obey is better than sacrifice, and to heed is better than the fat of rams.

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Current user rating: 83/100 (41 votes)

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The Meaning of Sacrifice
“The Meaning of Sacrifice” is episode #152 of the Adventures in Odyssey audio series. It was written by Paul McCusker, and originally aired on May 4, 1991.

Summary

The Barclays decide to listen to their pastor and sacrifice something they love to do... watch television! But it turns out to be a lot more difficult than anyone expected.

Plot

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Inspired by the pastor’s sermon one Sunday morning, George Barclay suggests that each of the Barclays sacrifice something important to them: television. That means no soap operas for Donna and no Zapazoids for Jimmy, since the game is played on a TV. The kids don’t really like the idea, but they finally agree: No TV for a month.

Jessie Morales thinks Donna is crazy for giving up their favorite soap opera right when things in the story line are getting critical. So Jessie comes up with a way to keep Donna up to date without breaking her promise: Jessie will watch the show and then tell Donna what happened. Donna isn’t sure about it, but she agrees.

At the same time, Jimmy discovers that Finneman's Market has a new Zapazoids game. Jimmy reasons that technically he won’t be watching TV by playing the game at the store.

Jimmy’s and Donna’s schemes work, until they run into each other at Finneman’s. Donna is buying a soap opera magazine, while Jimmy is in the middle of a hot Zappazoids game. They both blame each other. Whit, who also happens to be in the store, overhears the conversation. He explains that they have been following the letter, but not the spirit of the law. Jimmy and Donna both used a technicality to give into their temptation to watch television. The kids realize their error. They now understand the meaning of the verse, “To obey is better than sacrifice.” This time, they’ll give up TV, not for their parents or even for themselves, for God.

This plot section is too short and should be expanded. »

Discussion Questions

  1. What were Jimmy’s and Donna’s first mistakes?
  2. Read 1 Samuel 15:22
  3. What does “To obey is better than sacrifice” mean?
  4. Have you ever sacrificed something for God?
    • If so, what was it?

Cast

Role Voice Actor
Donna Barclay Azure Janosky
George Barclay Chuck Bolte
Jessie Morales Erin Morales
Jimmy Barclay David Griffin
Joe Finneman Parley Baer
John Whittaker Hal Smith
Mary Barclay Patti Parris

Notes

  • Jimmy Barclay refers to Perry Mason on this episode.

Quotes

Jessie Morales: I think I'll go home and watch Young Hearts Turning.
Donna Barclay: Thanks a lot, Benedict Jezebel!

George Barclay: We can sacrifice the TV!
Jimmy Barclay: What are we gonna do, burn it on a bunch of rocks?

Jimmy Barclay: You were talking about that dumb soap opera, "Young Stomachs Turning".
Donna Barclay: "Young Hearts Turning. And we weren't!
Jimmy Barclay: They think Kyle is going to ask Jamie to marry him, because he broke up with Monica!
Donna Barclay: It was Heather.

Jimmy Barclay: ... Donna! Mr. Whittaker!
Jessie Morales: You forgot me, Jimmy.
Jimmy Barclay: Jessie!

George Barclay: I think the pastor was on to something, the challenge I mean, to sacrifice something at home.
Jimmy Barclay: Uh oh, we're in trouble.
George Barclay: Look, the pastor talked about sacrificing something we consider important to us, you know, giving it up as a...tribute to God.
Jimmy Barclay: I'll give up spinach!
George Barclay: Ah...nice try, Jimmy, but I was thinking of something else, something near and dear to all of us.
Donna Barclay: Pizza?
George Barclay: Wrong!

Donna Barclay: I want to know why you were so anxious to go to bed.
Jimmy Barclay: I wasn't anxious, you were anxious.
Donna Barclay: I was not! What makes you think I have anything to be anxious about?
Jimmy Barclay: Your anxiousness makes me think you have something to be anxious about.
Donna Barclay: I don't believe it. You acted awfully anxious for someone who says you didn't have anything to be anxious about.
Jimmy Barclay: That's because you made me feel anxious by being anxious.

Joe Finneman: You wan'a have a go at Zappazoids while you wait?
Jimmy Barclay: Sure! Well, uh no thanks.
Joe Finneman: The end of the world must be coming and I must be standing in the middle of it. Why not?
Jimmy Barclay: We're giving TV up for a month and Zappazoids was part of the deal.
Joe Finneman: But, that's like giving up breathing or having your nose hairs plucked out!
Jimmy Barclay: You're telling me! Nose hairs?

Jimmy Barclay: I'm a man of principle!
Donna Barclay: You mean you're a man who GOES to the principal!