1_God who commands worship_September 18 2011
Looking at stain glass up close means you miss the beauty and purpose. Once you step back to see the big picture you gain understanding and appreciation. This is the goal of this message series; for you to catch a big picture perspective of who the God of the Word is from the Word of God.
Goal of series not just to know the Word of God but the God of the Word.
– We can know about godliness (behavior) without really knowing Him.
– We can know about God (beliefs) without really knowing Him.
– We need to know God (being).
- Our knowing of someone/something often depends on their self-revelation (them allowing us to know them). A person can be shy, socially awkward or inept that they remain hidden. Yet, God has fully revealed himself through His Son.
- John 1:14, 17 “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth… No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father’s side, he has made him known.”
- John 14:9 “Don’t you know me? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father.”
- John 17:3 “This is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.”
- Colossians 1:19 “For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell”
- Hebrews 1:3 “[The Son] is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature”
- Biblical analogies of knowing God (Packer)
- Relationship between father and son
- Romans 8:15 “but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, ‘Abba! Father!’”
- Relationship between husband and wife
- Isaiah 54:5 “For your husband is your Maker – Whose name is the Lord of hosts”
- Relationship between king and servant
- Psalm 145:1 “I exalt you my God the King, and praise your name forever”
- Relationship between shepherd and sheep
- John 10:27 “My sheep listen to my voice, I know them and they follow me.”
- Relationship between father and son
SO – in essence, the Bible is about knowing God, through His Son, by the Holy Spirit
Luke 24:25-27 Jesus explained to disciples, “beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.”
– In Genesis, God creates and later covenants with people to bring about His glory & purposes.
– In Exodus, God redeems and commands this people/nation to worship Him
– In Leviticus – Deuteronomy, God further instructs the people how to worship
God reveals Himself. He wants to be known. He is a talking God, speaking words and commands to His people. In and of themselves, His commands do not bring us acceptance before God. However, they expose and reveal how we fall short and sin before a holy God. They are meant to humble us and call out for mercy and grace.
Deuteronomy 5:6-21 (Exodus 20:1-17)
- No other gods God is Exclusive
- No idols God is Transcendent
- No blasphemy God is Important
- Remember Sabbath God is Blesser
- Honor parents God is Authority
- No murder God values Life
- No adultery God values Faithfulness
- No stealing God is Provider
- No lying God is Truth
- No jealousy God is Satisfactory
God commands worship personally (Deuteronomy 6:1-6).
Moses is commanded by God to speak to the people concerning the commands and worship of God. Even more specifically, this is directed at grandfathers and fathers (v.2). He calls them to:
1) Fear God: awe, respect, humble before His presence
2) Keep his statutes: joy (that it may go well with you and multiply greatly, in promised land) is a byproduct of obedience)
“Hear O Israel” (v.3, 4)
In Jewish tradition, this passage is known as The Shema, after the Hebrew word meaning “to hear”. This confession is so important that to this very day the observant Jew will recite the Shema at least twice daily. Shema implies more than hearing alone but also listening and following in obedience. To hear God without putting His words into practice is to not really hear Him.
Romans 2:13 “For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified.”
Further, to fear and obey God as the sole object of worship is not merely based on duty (have to) but delight (get to). It is relational with one God whom we love with all our being (heart, soul, mind and strength).
ð Do you treat God as an abstract deity or as an all-satisfying delight and treasure of faithful love and grace?
ð What idols or God-substitutes need removed from your life and family?
God commands worship publicly (Deuteronomy 6:7-9).
Moses continues the command for families to teach God’s commandments and pass them on to each succeeding generation. These commands are practiced publically to family and outsiders through:
1) Teaching diligently: intentional instruction
ð What is your plan to teach children to worship God? Note: This is not just under 18 but includes adult children!
ð The church is parent/family partnership
- Bible Groups
2) Living completely: when you sit or walk; lie down or rise; bind them on hands or heads and houses
ð Do you practice what is preached? Parents and individuals must remember children are like wet cement – early impressions made easily – therefore, we must match our words and actions.
ð Recent research studies, one done by Boston College and one done by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, have found that the more teenagers and their families have dinner together, the less likely they are to be involved with drugs, alcohol, and risky sexual behavior. Of course, families who eat together may also be the type of families who are more likely to have communication, boundaries and higher moral values than others. But, it is interesting to note that family togetherness is a protection against immorality.
God commands worship redemptively (Deuteronomy 6:20-25).
Moses further challenges the people training the next generation to always remember to pass on the testimony of God’s gracious and redemptive acts. To the Israelites, the Exodus – God’s deliverance from the Egyptians – was the gospel. It was their salvation and promise of hope for the future.
Likewise, God’s people must not assume the gospel. It is said it only takes 3 generations to lose the gospel: One generation believes, another generation assumes and the next generation denies. We must be diligent to communicate the gospel afresh for each generation.
* Share your gospel testimony with your family, neighbors.
- If unable, why not? Perhaps you do not know God. Jesus makes God known – He is available!
John 1:12 “But to all who receive him, who believe in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.”
 For fuller discussion see J.I. Packer, Knowing God, especially chapter 3.
 Quoted in NAC, Vol. 4 Deuteronomy