on Sunday 11.4.07

Morning Service

The messages I heard in Greenville last Sunday motivated the theme for our first service today. In our study of Romans, we had come to "concerning his Son … Jesus Christ our Lord." The services last Sunday struck me with a particular thought about the Son, so I decided to pause where we were and dwell on the subject a bit more.

In Overwhelmed by the Son I was emphasizing this idea:

There is a real person who is Jesus and who is God and who is NOW, THIS MOMENT , living in heaven, ministering before God for his saints and who is worthy of all your attention and worship.

Often in our worship services, I find myself concentrating on conducting the service, less on contemplating on the subject of the service, which is the worship of the Son. Last week I was able to sit and absorb the messages from the music and the preaching strictly as a worshipper. I suppose this contributed to the difference for me.

Many people seem to go through the motions in their worship, barely aware of the center, the focal point of our Christianity. They act as if they believe Jesus is far away, someone from 2000 years ago who we follow as a matter of course — they seem to miss a sense of the reality of our Lord Jesus Christ, living, interceding, ministering for us NOW. If we could capture a sense of the reality of the living person of our Lord, our worship, not to mention our lives, might be totally different.

Afternoon Service

In the afternoon, we looked at Leviticus 2 in Remember Your Lord. Lev 2 has to do with the grain offering in its various forms. It is a ‘memorial’ offering in that only a portion of the offering is burned as a ‘memorial’, reminding the worshipper that the offering is but a token of our ‘whole life obligation’ to God. We give tithes and offerings, but all our possessions belong to him. We give our time in worship each week, but all our time belongs to him.

The type of offering portrayed by the grain offering is a tribute – a gift of an inferior to a superior, often with a sense of fear. The offering acknowledges the indebtedness of the inferior to the superior, a picture of our whole life obligation to God.

Some things are excluded (yeast and honey) as unacceptable to God in this offering – these excluded items are likely excluded on the grounds of corruption they represent as agents of fermentation. The life presented to God is not acceptable with the presence of corruption. Salt is always included, a sign of an eternal covenant, an everlasting relationship between God and the believer.

This offering is a "therefore" offering. It always accompanies the burnt offering, which symbolizes our substitute fully and wholly bearing the wrath of God on our behalf. The ‘therefore’ aspect is captured by Rm 12.1-2, "I beseech you therefore…" The ‘therefore’ is the doctrine of salvation that precedes, so therefore present your bodies as a living grain offering, a living sacrifice… Heb 13.15-16 capture the same sense, "By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice [grain offering] of praise to God continually".

The point of the grain offering? To call the worshipper to a ‘whole life dedication’ to God.

~~~

We had 42 in attendance today, including two ladies who were visiting. As they came in they seemed somewhat reluctant to give their names and they rushed out without speaking to anyone. Sometimes I wonder what is going through people’s minds, but some are unwilling to reveal themselves. I don’t get a sense that these two will be back, but you never know.

Regards
Don Johnson
Jer 33.3

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