Summary: God does not want sanctimonious platitudes and feel-good ritual; He wants us, and our praise to Him needs to reflect true righteousness and thanksgiving.
An Offer to God
Griffith Baptist Church – 3/29/09
Text: Psalm 50
Key verse: Psalms 50:23 – Whoso offereth praise glorifieth me: and to him that ordereth his conversation aright will I show the salvation of God.
Premise: God does not want sanctimonious platitudes and feel-good ritual; He wants us, and our praise to Him needs to reflect true righteousness and thanksgiving.
The Character of the Judge - 50:1-6
The Calling from the Judge - 50:7-15
The Condemnation by the Judge - 50:16-21
The Consideration of the Judge - 50:22-23
During the tenure of the great orator Henry Ward Beecher, a visiting minister (Beecher’s brother) once substituted for the popular pastor. A large audience had already assembled to hear Beecher, and when the substitute pastor stepped into the pulpit, several disappointed listeners began to move toward the exits. That’s when the minister stood and said loudly, ’All who have come here today to worship Henry Ward Beecher may now withdraw from the church. All who have come to worship God keep your seats!" Today in the Word, April, 1989, p. 22
What do you have to offer God?
What do you think God is pleased with in your own life?
Shouldn’t we want to please God since He has done so much for us?
Some offer Him what they think He wants
Others offer what will get noticed
Still more give nothing at all
It has been said that a religion that costs nothing is worth nothing.
Here in this Psalm, we are looking at God as the judge of His people and what they have offered, or not offered Him.
Let’s takes a look at four (4) priceless gifts we can offer God that He will be pleased with.
1. Offer God Dedication, Not Worthless Religion – 7
A. As a young family was driving away from church after the dedication of their baby, little Johnny, the older brother, cried all the way home in the back seat of the car. His mother asked him three times what was wrong. Finally, the boy replied, "The pastor said he wanted us to be brought up in a Christian home... but I want to stay with you guys!"
B. Israel had become distracted from the “who” of worship to the “what” of worship:
i. They had to be told to listen because their ears were tuned into something else(7a)
ii. God had to remind them that He was “their God” (7c)
iii. Their religion had become old news and dull – Matthew 13:15 - For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them.
C. Complete commitment is the hallmark of our faith:
i. Thomas Chalmers said, “O Heavenly Father, convert my religion from a name to a principle! Bring all my thoughts and movements into an habitual reference to Thee!
ii. Our God should never become dull, and that comes through:
a. Reading and heeding the Word of God
iii. It is how God is pleased - Hebrews 11:1, 6 - 1Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. 6But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
iv. It is the chief command – Mark 12:30 – And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment
v. Committed in our journey - Psalms 37:5 – Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.
vi. Committed in our thoughts and actions - Proverbs 16:3 - Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established.
2. Offer God Sincerity, Not Empty Ritual – 8-15
A. In Washington, D.C., Bill Clinton tried to remove an unflattering portrait that has been hung around his neck for three years, urging the Christian conservatives not to condemn ’the motives and character" of people with whom they disagree because if they ’could look into my soul they would see someone whose belief is God is as sincere and deep and genuine as theirs" and who probably is ’much more humble in his Christian faith than many of them are." U. S. News & World Report, March 6, 1995, p. 15
B. Israel had fallen into the rut of ritualism:
i. Their religion had become recycled and redundant