THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT

Program Air Date - 3-12-06

LESSON TITLE: "HELP MY UNBELIEF: I BELIEVE I MUST WORSHIP GOD"

WELCOME

"The Heavens declare the glory of God, and the firmament shows forth His handiwork," Psalm 19:1. No truer words have ever been spoken for all of creation does show forth the glory of the Creator.

Let me welcome each of you to the Living Word program on this glorious Lord's day morning! How wonderful it is to know that you have chosen to put God first this day and to assemble for this time of worship before His Mighty Throne!

As always, it will be our privilege to offer sacrifices to God this morning, with the fruit of our lips and the obedience of our actions, may we all be encouraged on this the Lord's day. However, may we each do our part so that ultimately we will offer praise to God according to His truth as is found in His Precious Will. So as we begin our focus on the Creator, will you bow with me in prayer?

(PRAYER)

Now let's join in our first hymn of the day. It's name, "Angels Are Singing."

(SONG # 1)

DEVOTIONAL THOUGHTS

We mentioned a verse earlier, which reminded us of the wonder, power and might of our God. In fact, when we look around in this world or at the vast universe we see the signs of God's power everywhere. Consider the beauties of this earth, the seasons and their unique and special characteristics. And what about the glory of the stars in heaven which we see twinkling in the night sky. Our God is a great God.

The point is, we see proof, signs and confirmation of our God all around us. We know He exist through the wonder of those things which He created and made. And now consider how blessed we are to have this awesome being as our Creator, caregiver and friend. Brethren, how thankful to God we should all be.

The inspired Apostle Paul understood these same ideas all to well, when He said, "For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse," Romans 1:20. Again notice that God has revealed Himself through His Creation. Back in verse 19 It is also clarified that "He has made Himself know" by these things! Yes, God's wonder, glory and praise can be fully seen in those things which He has made. Finally, consider with me the crowning glory of God's fullness and that which clearly makes Him known among us. Let's read from Colossians 2:9, "For in Him dwells all the fullness of the Godhead bodily." It was by Jesus Christ that all things have been fully revealed and through which the Godhead itself has become known and fully evident.

Do you know your God this day? Have you realized the great evidences and clarity which His Creation shows concerning His existence? Choose today to believe in this God and to obey His precious Will!

Today we will continue our series of study entitled, "Help My Unbelief." Our lesson this day will be, "I Believe I Must Worship God." So please stay with us this morning and after our next song together, I will lead us in the main thoughts of the day. Now it's time to join in our second song, the name of this hymn, "Softly And Tenderly."

(SONG # 2)

LESSON

Speaker: Ray Sullins

Thank you so much for continuing with us as we now look to God's Word and consider another lesson from our series on Unbelief of a Christian.

Today, we want to help our belief in the things of God by looking at worship. Certainly worship is an important part of what God has designed from the very beginning of creation. In fact, you might recall as God made man and placed him in the garden that we learn it is not long before man sins against God. After he sins, he is thrown out of the garden and then there is a short period of time that we don't know much about what is going on with man except the fact that he is outside of the garden, and yet now needs a reason and an ability and a plan to come back to God, some type of redemption.

It's there in chapter 4 of Genesis that we open up with a new idea, an idea that now Adam and Eve have children, Cain and Abel. It is interesting there in verse 3 beginning that as they had been born, as time passed, they both come before God and it states there that they bring an offering. We see that Cain as well as Abel bring before God an offering to make sacrifice before His throne, that they might worship God. Why is it that Cain and Abel would have brought an offering to God? Certainly they had learned this from their parents. Certainly they had learned it from the example of Adam and certainly they had learned it from God Almighty Himself that to be pleasing they should offer sacrifices. They should give of their best and they should show their love for God.

It's not long after that that we move to men such as Noah. Noah, another great Bible character, a man who in his own rights stands alone as a man of faith, a man of proclamation in the Word of God and a man who was strong and firm in his convictions. We find here Noah being a man who did exactly what God had said for he was found righteous. But I remind you after they came off of the ark and were delivered by God that at that time there around chapter 9 that they remained outside the ark and as they walked on dry ground, we find that they built an altar. The end of chapter 8 as well as chapter 9 tell us about this story and how they are there on the boat and how very soon after they understand a need to worship God.

Not long after that, we find another great Bible character, Abraham. In Genesis 22, Abraham was a man who knew God and who understood the need to worship. Later in his life, we find the pattern that had been laid down. We know there in chapter 22 that he is told to take his only son, Isaac, the one of promise, and to go and worship God. In this situation, we find that he goes to a place signified and really designated by God Himself to go to this mountain, Mount Horeb or Sinai, and worship. When he gets there we know that he gets off of the animals and he tells his servants, "Myself and my son are going over yonder and worshipping." Well, we find again that they were going to worship God in a certain way, in a certain place, with a certain intent, and also in the proper way, the proper time. Everything they did was about God's Will and how they could best accomplish that Will.

The Israelites are no exception. In Exodus chapter 19 and 20, we find early on as they were given the commands of God, that they came before God and they worshipped God. Later as Moses there at the Jordan River, before crossing into Canaan, he again spoke to them and reiterated the law. And there in Deuteronomy chapter 26 around verse 10, we find again the same type of idea and command being presented, that they were told "worship before the Lord God," to worship the God who had given them now the land and the promises that had been given all the way from the time of Abraham.

Not after that, too long again, we find a man, a man that was named Samuel. Certainly there were others in between that period of time such as Abraham's sons and grandsons and Moses and others. But we move on and we find that even later in the days of Israel that Samuel speaks with Saul and Saul there when he is told by God, "I will rip the kingdom out of your hand," in 1 Samuel 15. There in verse 25, he actually begs Samuel, and Saul says, "Allow me to worship your God. Help me to worship your God that He might receive my worship." But again, Samuel refused because he had rejected the Will of God.

Not long after that time again, men like David in 1 Chronicles, we find that David there was a man at that time who was worshipping God. In fact, he was striving to sing a song of thanksgiving and to worship his God with thanksgiving. Then we're certainly all well aware of the many psalms that the psalmist wrote, that is again David, and how that he worshipped and praised his God and showed glory and devotion and how he lifted Him up as his awesome creator, as the giver of all, as the one who cared and as the one who would provide in every facet of his life that he might be able to have all that he had need of and that he as well might endure the hardships and the trials that would come. One psalm that really stands out is Psalm 99 as David there in verse 5 says, "Exalt the Lord our God and worship at His footstool for He is holy. Moses and Aaron were among the priests and Samuel was among those who called His name holy, in other words, they worshipped Him, and He spoke to them in the cloud and they kept His testimonies." There in verse 9, he exalt says, "Exalt the Lord our God and worship at His holy hill for the Lord our God is holy." You see again, worship, worship as I worship. Worship as Moses, as Aaron. Worship as Israel. Worship as all of those who ever loved and desired to serve God. Worship as they have worshipped.

What I find interesting now about you and I is that we are given a similar command. Now I want you to turn with me to the book of John chapter 4 and read with me some words of Jesus in connection to His discussion with a lady at Jacob's well. He was there and receiving a drink of water and offering her for the first time the living water, the water that would cause her to never thirst. She says, "Sir, I want that water. Give me some of that water. It sounds great." But then later we find there as she is talking with Him and saying, "My fathers have had to worship on this mountain here because really we've not been allowed to go into Jerusalem where the Jews worship because we are but Samaritans." But then it was Jesus there in that same text who clearly represents now to us what it is that worship is all about and as He speaks to the woman, He tells her this in verse 23. He says, "But the hour is coming and now is when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth for the Father is seeking such to worship Him." What is it here that Jesus, the son of God, God in the flesh, reveals to this Samaritan woman? He says, "Today as it has been said and even today as it now is, all men will be able to worship as true worshippers." Well the question would have been in her mind: What's a true worshipper? He immediately answers the question. "The true worshipper is one that worships God in spirit and in truth and (thus as we find here) is pleasing to the Father." That's the ones that God is seeking to worship Him. Do you want God to seek you as a true worshipper? Well we learn here that God being a spirit in verse 24, He requires that you and I as true worshippers wherever it might be, at any time and any place, that we worship in spirit with the right attitude, with the right heart, the right mind, the right action and then as we read here, the right truth, the right way, that we read God's Will and we find out what He wants of us and what He expects and that we do what is right that we might have true worship.

Why does it matter? It matters because the scriptures tell us that there is a such thing as vain or unacceptable worship. One such example is found over in Matthew 15, verses 7-9. It talks there about actually a quote from the prophet Isaiah. But Jesus here is answering again the situation that is coming up. Jews are being hypocritical and they themselves are trying to impose things that are not doctrines of God, but yet tradition. And what is it that He tells them? He says, "These people (verse 8), they draw near to Me with their mouths and they honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me and in vain they worship Me." Why? Because they are teaching as doctrines the commandments of men. You see, we begin to learn that if we teach the wrong doctrines, if we don't have the right attitude, if we don't do it in the right way, then we are not the true worshippers which the Father is seeking to worship Him. Brethren, you and I know (that) if we're not true worshippers, how can we expect to be received by God with thanksgiving? How can we be expected to be received by God as those who are righteous and proper in His sight?

I think that Paul helps us as well with the concept of the true worshipper as we might turn over there in the book of Corinthians. In 1 Corinthians chapter 14, we find that he talks about the need of a worshipper to do worship in the right way. Verse 15 says, the conclusion is that he says, "I will pray with the right spirit (the right attitude, the right heart) and I will pray with the understanding. I will do it in a way that it is right and I will do it with the right heart." Then he goes on to say, "I will sing with (what?) the right attitude and I will sing in the right way," the proper way. What is this telling us? It is telling us that true worshippers have a pattern, the same way they had a pattern under the Old Law in the Old Testament times as they were building the altars and making sacrifice. You and I today have been given the pattern of the true worshipper. Where do we find it but in the book itself, the Bible. Where do we go to to know what God wants us to do? His own precious Word. And what do we find in it? We find basically five acts that by divine example were being done by the New Testament church on the first day of every week, the Lord's day, Sunday, the day of the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We notice there that the Lord's Supper was being taken in 1 Corinthians chapter 11 as a memorial feast, a remembrance of the sacrifice of Christ. We find as well that they were "singing and making melody in their hearts to the Lord with their mouths and their tongues," there in Ephesians 5:19 and Colossians 3:16. We also find that they were praying, Acts 2:42, as they assembled to praise God and they were praying without ceasing as commanded by their Creator. We also know that they were being taught the Word of God. Acts 2:42 says that "They were teaching one another." And even in Acts 20 and verse 7, we find that Paul as he assembled with the church, "Preached the Word of God." We also find that they were giving of their means, (1 Corinthians chapter 16, verses 1-2, that "on the first day of the week, they would lay by in store that they might give of their means." When? On the Lord's Day, on the day the church assembled to worship, and that they should not give grudgingly but in a bountiful way because the more they give the more they receive (2 Corinthians chapter 9, verses 6 and following.

The encouragement I would like to give you today is to understand we must worship God. I believe in God and I believe that God tells me through His Word (that) I must be a worshipper. So today, are you a worshipper of God? Are you obeying His Will? Are you doing today and everyday and especially on the first day of the week that which is commanded by God? If not, correct it today and from hence forth do exactly as He commands.

(SONG # 3 - "Victory In Jesus.")

CLOSING COMMENTS

Let me thank you again for choosing to be with us today, in this offering to God. I know our time together has been an encouragement and blessing to all of us. We invite you back every Sunday morning at 7:30, as we commit ourselves to this service of God!

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How privileged we are to have the opportunity to Worship and Praise our God. May we always take advantage of this avenue of devotion to our Creator!

(Program closing)