3:1-5,8-10,16-18 Aug. 26, 2007
Worship styles today vary significantly as we find, standing, sitting, kneeling, shouting,
hands, and silence. In all of these actions everyone needs to Worship
Appropriately, and that will not magnify
man but the Lord.
1. Worship Appropriately
Expecting The . . Return Of Christ. 3:1-3
A. Worship Appropriately
Expecting The . . Prophesied Messenger Of Christ's Return.
"See, I am going
to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me.. . ." 3:1a
B. Worship Appropriately Envisioning The . .
Promises Of Christ's Return. 3:1b
"Then the Lord you seek will suddenly come to His temple, the Messenger
of the covenant you desire
-- see, He is coming," says the LORD of Hosts.
C. Worship Appropriately Expressing The . . Purifying Of Christ's Return.
2 But who can endure
the day of His coming? And who will be able to stand when He appears? For He will be like a refiner's fire and like
cleansing lye. 3 He will be like a refiner and
purifier of silver; He will purify the sons of Levi and refine them
like gold and silver. Then they will present
offerings to the LORD in righteousness.<>
Appropriate praise saturates worship that includes an emphasis on the
Lord's return. We have the
prophesies, promises, and the purifying affect of this future event
highlighted in these verses. Some will mock or belittle anyone
emphasizing the Lord's return because it has not occurred in
2,000 years. But we who trust the Lord will allow Him to set the time
table with confidence His Word is
reliable. When He comes He will make a purifying work on the house of
Israel. Their sacrifices will not point
to the cross, but commemorate. and celebrate the accomplished work of
Christ on the cross.
2. Worship Appropriately In
Expressions Of . . Righteousness. 3:4-5
A. Worship Appropriately Expressions Of . .
Pleasure In Righteous. 3:4
4 And the offerings of Judah and
Jerusalem will please the LORD as in days of old and
years gone by.
B. Worship Appropriately In
Expressions Of . . Punishment
Of Unrighteousness. 3:5
5 "I will come to you in
judgment, and I will be ready to witness against sorcerers and adulterers; against those who swear falsely; against those
who oppress the widow and the fatherless, and
cheat the wage earner; and against those who deny justice to the
foreigner. They do not fear Me," says the LORD
The Lord is please when His people
worship with righteous actions, and attitudes. How detestable it must
be for God to be offered lame lambs, or halfhearted dedication from
those going through the motions of
worship. What about us today when thoughts focus more on the Sunday
afternoon activities than on the
worship services. Do we really give ourselves to the worship
experiences? The unrighteous expressions of
worship will be punished. In the text seven different sinful activities
are listed for God's judgment. What
would the list look like today? Some of the list would include the same
sins. We have advanced about 2500
years in time, but man kinds actions remain very similar.
3. Worship Appropriately Excluding
. . Robbery. 3:8-10
A. Worship Appropriately Excluding The
Robbery Of Your . . Tenth. 3:8-9
"Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me!" You ask: "How do we rob
You?" "By not making the payments of 10
percent and the contributions. 9 You are suffering under a curse, yet you -- the whole nation -- are still robbing Me.
B. Worship Appropriately Excluding The Robbery Of Your . . Testimony.
10 Bring the full 10 percent into
the storehouse so that there may be food in My house. Test Me in this way," says the LORD of Hosts. "See if I will
not open the floodgates of heaven and pour out a
blessing for you without measure.
On one occasion a man in a church I pastored
expressed a troubling concern to me as one of hischildren was caught
stealing money from his mother's purse. It is so sad when a child will
talk love to their
parents, and at the same time be stealing from them. On Sunday many
church members express love in
attendance, scripture reading and song, while all the time they have
their hand on their wallet or purse holding
on to God's tithe rather than giving it as God commands. I grew up in
Tower Grove Baptist Church where
many men and ladies shared their tithing testimonies. I noted in
watching these folks the total testimony
witnessed by their lives. They were right with God in money matters
because they were interested in being
right with God totally.
4. Worship Appropriately Exalting .
. Reverence. 3:16-18
A. Worship Appropriately Exalting Reverence In . . Speech. 3:16
16 At that time those who feared the LORD spoke to one
another. The LORD took notice and listened. So a
book of remembrance was written before Him for those who feared Yahweh and had
high regard for His name.
B. Worship Appropriately Exalting Reverence In . . Special Recognition.
17 "They will be Mine," says the LORD of Hosts, "a
special possession on the day I am preparing.
I will have compassion on them as a man has compassion on his son who
C. Worship Appropriately Exalting Reverence In . . Service. 3:18
18 So you will again see the difference between the
righteous and the wicked, between one who
serves God and one who does not serve Him. HCSB
When people really worship
reverently any person walking with God will sense the Spirit leading in
worship experience. The speech, special recognition, and service will
all take on a different quality. The text
tells us God noticed as the people who feared, reverenced,
the Lord spoke to one another. If we walk in
reverence toward God it will affect how we talk. God promises special
recognition for these reverent people,
and the difference in these people will be seen in their service. Some
serve for self or to please man, other
serve to please God, and this kind of service gives a radiance that
demonstrates they worship appropriately. Amen? Amen!