Wrong Worship

Wrong Worship

There is a kind of worship that is sensual, ungodly and corrupt. This kind of worship is wrong. What makes it wrong is that it is not done in accordance to God’s way. Wrong worship is coming to God on the basis and by means of man’s ways and not God’s. Scripture is filled with examples of wrong worship. I have only selected a few examples that illustrate the corrupt practice of wrong worship.

Cain
Both Cain and Abel worshiped the Lord by means of sacrifice (). Despite the fact that they both offered a sacrifice to God, only Abel’s was deemed acceptable (cf. ). In the eyes of man, Cain’s offering would have appeared visually acceptable and sacrificial. However, that is not what makes sacrifice or worship acceptable to God. Abel’s was received and Cain’s was rejected () because one worshiped God according to His ordained way and the other didn’t (cf. ). Because it is not revealed in Scripture the reason why Abel’s offering was acceptable, we can only assume that the Lord had revealed the method to them prior (cf. ) and by faith Abel acted on that (cf. ).

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In the course of time Cain brought to the Lord an offering of the fruit of the ground, and Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions. And the Lord had regard for Abel and his offering,

and Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions. And the Lord had regard for Abel and his offering,

but for Cain and his offering he had no regard. So Cain was very angry, and his face fell.

By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though he died, he still speaks.

Hebrews 12:24

24 and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.

21 And the Lord God made for Adam and for his wife garments of skins and clothed them.

By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though he died, he still speaks.

Sacrifice and Obedience

The Sacrifice of Isaac by Caravaggio

In the first book of Samuel, , King Saul neglects the direct commands of God. Samuel’s prophetic word in response to Saul’s sin is as follows:

Has the Lord as great delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices, as in obeying the voice of the Lord? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to listen than the fat of rams. For rebellion is as the sin of divination, and presumption is as iniquity and idolatry. Because you have rejected the word of the Lord, he has also rejected you from being king.

Here, in , Samuel states clearly what the Lord’s prefers to receive from Saul. He prefers obedience, for “to obey is better than sacrifice.” It is a striking example of God’s requirements upon his people, and it is not the only instance that this juxtaposition between sacrifices and obedience is made. The people were definitely required by God to offer sacrifices; if they didn’t they could Continue reading Sacrifice and Obedience

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A Foot in Both Camps

Why am I in danger every hour?  I protest, brothers, by my pride in you, which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die every day!  What do I gain if, humanly speaking, I fought with beasts at Ephesus? If the dead are not raised, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.”     

Paul was in danger constantly.  He could say that he died every day!  He fought wild beasts!  His gospel ministry took him constantly into danger.

Why is Paul talking about this?  The Corinthians were denying the resurrection.  Paul wants them to be very clear on this: if there is no resurrection we should indeed eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.  We should not be risking our life for the sake of the gospel.  If we will not be raised from the dead, we should be partying!  Yes, folks, non-Christians have the right idea: if this life is all there is we should maximise our fun and partying.

But this life is not all there is.  If it was all there is, I can’t understand why Continue reading A Foot in Both Camps

30 Why are we in danger every hour? 31 I protest, brothers, by my pride in you, which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die every day! 32 What do I gain if, humanly speaking, I fought with beasts at Ephesus? If the dead are not raised, “Let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die.”

Jesus is our Great High Priest

My small group is currently working through the book of Hebrews. It’s extremely rich and deep in it’s teaching. One could argue that one of the main themes or purposes of the book of Hebrews is to highlight the qualifications, sufficiency and supremacy of Christ in our creation and salvation. Hebrews’ goal is to point the reader to Jesus and how He alone is our hope.

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Unconditional Love

“But God demonstrated his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (NIV)

Expressing love as God intends is becoming increasingly rare in this self-absorbed world. By nature, we tend to want to love others only if  we get something in return. Selfishly, we always have the fulfilment of our own needs in the back of our minds, no matter how pure our intentions may seem on the surface.

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but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Spurgeon

For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.”

On The Cross

First, let us enquire, WHAT IS THIS CROSS OF CHRIST to which some men are sadly said to be enemies?

Of course, it is not the material cross. It is not anything made in the shape of the cross. There are some who can fall down and adore a cross of wood, or stone, or gold, but I cannot conceive of a greater wounding of the heart of Christ than to pay reverence to anything in the shape of Continue reading Spurgeon

18 For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. 19 Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things.

Showing Others Unconditional Love

Showing Others Unconditional Love “But God demonstrated his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Expressing love as God intends is becoming more rare in this self-absorbed world. We tend to, by nature, only want to love others as long as we get something in return. We seem to selfishly always have our needs in the back of our minds, no matter how pure our intentions may seem on the surface. But God calls us to love others as He first loved us. It’s not about warm fuzzy feelings or primarily by how we feel. It’s about sacrifice; putting off one’s self for the sake of others. If that’s not hard enough, we are to do it without expecting anything in return!! Impossible you might say. Humanly speaking… yes! Only by allowing the Holy Spirit within us to refine our hearts, can we begin to love as God first loved us.

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but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.