Sunday, September 19, 2010

Pentecost 17 (Proper 20)

Today's theme was week two of the sermon series on following Jesus. The theme: "Follow the One Who Worships." The readings: Exodus 20:8-11; Hebrews 1:1-4, 2:5-12 (sermon text); and Luke 16:1-15.

Worship attendance spikes after disasters (9/11, anyone?) but resumes its decline soon thereafter, for several reasons. After all, those who worship are fighting the world and their own sinful nature.
  • We are selfish. This causes many problems (divorce because we want something for ourselves; thievery because we want what our neighbor has). But worship is not about us; it is ALL about God.
  • We want quick fixes. But worship isn't only for perceived needs - it takes a lifetime to work.
  • We are short-sighted, wanting God to fix all our problems NOW. But His will, the best, runs on a different timetable; in worship He is by our side through our problems.
  • Worship feels like too much work. Surely all good things must come easily, no? No! Good things take time, effort, and discipline. The world is our playing field; our job on earth is to work for God; worship is a key part of that. Guaranteed by God, it pays off.
Worship isn't entertainment; it's nourishment. As with food and eating, so it is with life and worshiping. It's not a choice for a Christian! But take heart - besides the precious investment in eternity, there are temporal benefits as well: cementing families, cementing marriages, mental stability, and fellowship. Don't forget to worship!

Soli Deo gloria.

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