Genesis 22:2, And he (God) said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.
Genesis 22:5, And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.
I Chronicles 16:29, Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name: bring an offering, and come before him: worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.
We are continuing our thought on five things that marked Abraham’s worship. Today we will be looking at the second mark of the five – Obedience.
“Obedience is the very best way
To show that you believe:
Doing exactly what the Lord commands,
Doing it happily.
Action is the key–do it immediately,
The joy you will receive!
Obedience is the very best way
To show that you believe.
O-B-E-D-I-E-N-C-E (Yes, sir!)
Obedience is the very best way
To show that you believe.”
As a boy, I enjoyed singing this song, as I’m sure many of you did. It’s applicable to our subject at hand, because obedience is also the very best standard to measure the sincerity of our worship (I John 14:15).
Worship in and of itself speaks of reverential submission to authority. The act of bowing down in worship both defines and illustrates this truth (Genesis 24:26; Psalm 95:6). Disobedience discloses and declares our allegiance to another. True worship cannot exist where there are divided interests. It is void of hypocrisy. For, how can someone honor and praise, whom they do not respect and obey? Therefore, worship is more than an emotional experience, it is a willful act.
So, what moved Abraham to worship God? Let’s begin by noting some things that did not motivate Abraham to worship. He did not need a song, choir, or band to create a mood to prompt his worship. The atmosphere that occasioned his worship was painfully sober. He needed no worship leader, praise team, motivational speaker, or eloquent and dynamic preacher to excite his sensibilities. In contrast, his spirit had been quickened by grief. There was one thing Abraham needed, and one thing he possessed – a clear, unmistakable command from the Almighty to worship (Genesis 22:1-2). Abraham obeyed (Genesis 22:11-12, 15-16).
Like Abraham, our worship should be offered out of obedience to his word, and in harmony with how he desires to be worshipped. He obeyed in who, where, when, and how he worshipped. God expects no less from us.
Worship today is characterized in many different ways; from formal, traditional, and old-fashioned; to modern, contemporary, and charismatic. However, if we are going to reach our world for Christ, obedience will define our worship. Anything less will expose our hypocrisy and declare to the world our worship proceeds from an immature and ungrounded faith, and is nothing more than heightened sentiments, and empty emotionalism.
My prayer is that we will rise above the religious fanfare of our day and will be true worshippers of God “in spirit and in truth.”
Pastor Brooks Suttle
Royal River Baptist Church