Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Best Illustration of Worship

In a recent message "Why Worship", I left out the best illustration of worship in the Bible because it deserves it's own message instead of a brief mention. However, since I don't see the opportunity to preach it in the near future, let me give you 5 things we learn about worship through this illustration.

The illustration is found in Luke 7:36-50. 36 One of the Pharisees asked him to eat with him, and he went into the Pharisee's house and took his place at the table. 37 And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the Pharisee's house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment, 38 and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed them with the ointment. 39 Now when the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner.” 40 And Jesus answering said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he answered, “Say it, Teacher.” 41 “A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. 42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?” 43 Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And he said to him, “You have judged rightly.” 44 Then turning toward the woman he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. 45 You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. 46 You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. 47 Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.” 48 And he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” 49 Then those who were at table with him began to say among [8] themselves, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?” 50 And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

Three Key Lessons About Worship:
  1. Worship is to be aware that I am forgiven. Jesus says very clear, "...her sins, which are man, are forgiven-for she loved (worshiped) much. But he who is forgiven little (or you could say is unaware that He is or can be forgiven), loves (worships) little. If your worship of Jesus is lackluster, it is because His forgiveness of your sins hasn't hit home! Do as David did in Psalm 103 and speak to your soul, "Soul, wake up! He's forgiven your sin!"
  2. Worship is not superficial, but extravagant. This lady didn't give mental accept to her state of forgiveness, nor did she simply give to Jesus what "she didn't need." But rather, she poured out a year's wages to anoint Jesus because in her mind, she was worth it. What is Jesus worth to you? Does your worship of Him match the value you have attached to Him in your mind?
  3. Worship is not about being respectable. In order to anoint the feet of Jesus, she would have needed to upbraid her hair, which would not have been a respectable thing to do, but worshiping Jesus has nothing to do with being respectable. It’s about seeing Jesus and the wonder of His glory and grabbing a hold of his nailed scarred hands and looking into his deep, deep eyes of love and its letting go of yourself and realizing something about Him and you just get lost and you have an uncalculated response that at times is outwardly expressive
May we grow in our understanding of our forgiven sin and then express that gratitude in extravagant, inwardly and outwardly expressive way, which includes our how we spend our days and out dollars.