1. In John 4:23 Jesus revealed some important principles relating to worship. a. Worship is to be directed to the Father. b. True worshipers worship the Father in spirit and in truth. c. The Father seeks true worshipers to worship Him. 2. The fact that Jesus talked about "true worship" implies that there are types of worship that are not true. 3. Untrue worship must be avoided. 4. In our lesson we are examining 4 examples of untrue worship. 5. The purpose for our study is to help us avoid making the same mistakes.
I. CAIN OFFERED UNTRUE WORSHIP (Genesis 4)
A. (vs.1-4a) Cain and Abel presented offerings to God. B. (vs.4b-5) God reacted to their offerings. 1. He was pleased with Abel and his offering. 2. He was not pleased with Cain and his offering. C. We learn from Hebrews 11:4 that Abel offered his sacrifice "by faith" -- faith involves a proper response to God's Word (Romans 10:17). D. God has determined in His Word how He is to be worshiped. E. Cain apparently did not care whether he pleased God -- rather than repent he became so angry that he killed Abel. F. True worship involves worshiping "by faith."
II. NADAB AND ABIHU OFFERED UNTRUE WORSHIP (Leviticus 10:1-3)
A. Nadab and Abihu were sons of Aaron, and they served as priests. B. A special offering had been presented to God, and He responded to it (9:24). C. Nadab and Abihu did something that God had not commanded them to do, and He punished them for failing to sanctify and glorify Him. D. True worship involves participating in the acts that the Lord has authorized in His Word (Colossians 3:16-17).
III. THE ISRAELITES OFFERED UNTRUE WORSHIP (Malachi 1:13-14)
A. The Law of Moses gave instructions concerning the animals that the Israelites offered as sacrifices (Leviticus 22:17-20). B. In Malachi's day the Israelites were offering blemished animals to God. C. According to Malachi 1:8, the Israelites showed contempt to God through their offerings, and He was not pleased. D. True worship involves presenting the best that we have [a sacrifice] to God.
IV. THE PHARISEES OFFERED UNTRUE WORSHIP (Mark 7:1-13)
A. Jesus said that the Pharisees were guilty of "vain worship." B. They kept God's commands that they liked, and they developed traditions to get around keeping God's commands that they did not like. 1. They were very careful about washing before eating. 2. They overlooked their responsibilities to care for their parents. C. True worship involves submission to God's Word (Proverbs 28:9).
1. We have examined 4 examples of untrue worship. 2. In 1 Corinthians 10:1-13 we are taught to avoid the mistakes made by others. 3. Let us avoid untrue worship. 4. Let us remember that the Father seeks to be worshiped by true worshipers (John 4:23).