Thursday, May 10, 2012

Believe It or Not, You Are A Worshiper

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This is a rough outline of my notes for my talk with the youth group at my church last night. The big idea and some main points came from my reading of this great little book by Louie Giglio called The Air I Breathe: Worship as a Way of Life. I encourage you to go get it.

  • Worship is what we do. All the time.
  • It is what you were created for.  Colossians 1:16 For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities— all things have been created through Him and for Him. 
  • You're very good at it. 
  • Worship is our response to what matters most in our lives.
  • Worship is a declaration
    • Seen at football games, concerts
      • school colors, fight song, singing along with our favorite artist
      • Enraptured in worship
  • The question is not whether or not you worship.
    • The questions is who or what do you worship?
    • What do you value most?
  • You continually make decisions based on the object of your worship
    • Follow the trail of your time, your money, your attention, and your affection.
    • At the end of the trail, you will find a throne. On that throne is the object of your worship
    • The trail never lies.
    • He knows he cannot stop it so he tries to shift our object
      • From God in His rightful place to something or someone else
    • Began in the garden (read Genesis 3: 1-7)
Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” The woman said to the serpent, “ From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.’”  The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate. Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loin coverings.
    • Satan convinced Adam and  Eve to shift the object of her affection from God to herself
    • Traded heart relationship with God for head knowledge
    • Devastated their lives and all of our lives since then
      • Eve ate the poisoned fruit and everyone since is born with a soul fit for hell.
    • We are bent for worship; for relationship with something greater
      • Trade it for a trillion trivial pursuits. Little idols made by human hands. Lesser gods made by human imagination.
    • We become like what we worship: Psalm 115: 1-8
Not to us, O Lord, not to us, But to Your name give glory Because of Your lovingkindness, because of Your truth. 2  Why should the nations say, “ Where, now, is their God?” 3 But our God is in the heavens; He does whatever He pleases. 4 Their idols are silver and gold, The work of man’s hands. 5 They have mouths, but they cannot speak; They have eyes, but they cannot see; 6 They have ears, but they cannot hear; They have noses, but they cannot smell; 7 They have hands, but they cannot feel; They have feet, but they cannot walk; They cannot make a sound with their throat. 8  Those who make them will become like them, Everyone who trusts in them.
  • Whatever we worship, we imitate. Whatever we imitate, we become.
    • Become a walker by imitating walkers
    • Become a talker by imitating talkers
    • Worship money ==> become greedy to the core
    • Worship some sinful habit ==> it will own you.
    • Worship stuff ==> life will be about material gain with no eternal significance
  • Paul at the aeropagus in Athens
    • The epicurian and stoic philosophers there had altars set up to all their idols
    • Plus an altar TO AN UNKNOWN GOD; just to cover their bases
    • Are we guilty of this? Is our church attendance and service merely an altar to an unknown god? Are we just here to cover our spiritual bases?
    • Let me read to you what the Apostle said to these philosophers:
Acts 17:22 So Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I observe that you are very religious in all respects. 23 For while I was passing through and examining the objects of your worship, I also found an altar with this inscription, ‘TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.’ Therefore what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you. 24  The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; 25 nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things; 26 and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, 27 that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;28 for in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we also are His children.’ 29 Being then the children of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and thought of man. 30 Therefore havingoverlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all people everywhere should repent, 31 because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.”
  • Throughout history, God has been seeking those who will worship Him
  • "Where are you, Adam?" He still calls to us today
  • Each day is an invitation to find him; to lean into him
  • Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost.
    • What was lost? 
      • Our innocence. 
      • Our unashamed worship of Him.
  • God is seeking you because you cannot live without Him
    • There is no life in your trivial ambitions
  • God has always been about turning rebels into worshipers.
  • Ephesians 2
And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ ( by grace you have been saved), and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.
  • Christ became sin for us even though He was sinless that by his death, he put to death sin itself.
  • The cross was a place of humiliation and shame. It has become a place of beauty and wonder for us. It is the place where real life and true worship begin.
  • This is love: Not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
  • We enjoy the favor of the Father as sons and daughters; co-heirs with Christ; seated with him in the heavenly realms. The audacity of this claim calls for nothing less than a total response.
  • You must find an object worthy of your affection.
  • A God worthy of your devotion.
  • Don't squander your birthright as a son or daughter of God on trivial pursuits; little gods created by human imagination. 


Heavenly Father, you have created us by and for your pleasure. You have created us to worship you because only in worshiping you do we find life. But Father, we have traded that life; that beautiful relationship for the lie that says that a lesser god is more satisfying. Would you move in our hearts to gently lead us back to the cross; the healing tree where the great chasm between us was forever bridged in Christ? Would you be pleased to open our eyes to see the truth that only in taking up the blood of Christ and coming to your throne to find grace in our need do we find real life? Would you see fit to make the lesser fruit of our vain pursuits bitter to our taste so that only Christ is sweet? We humble ourselves before you and ask that you do your work in us to shift our affection from ourselves and our little gods back to its rightful owner. Your name and Your glory alone. Amen. 

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