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Summary: Using the Israelites as our primary example, you will discover that worship of the almighty God requires us to bring our best!

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TEXT: Various

TITLE: The Praising Church: Bringing Your Best. . .

TOPIC: Worship

OCCASION: Burnside Christian Church, February 10th, 2008

PROP.: Bringing your Best to God includes: Being prepared to worship, Participating in Worship, Give it all!

INTRODUCTION: Good morning! And welcome! At this time, we would like to dismiss our Jr. Church age kids for worship across the street! If you would also pass the black attendance pads down the pew you are sitting in…that would be grand. J

We are on a journey together to become the church that Jesus desires us to be. February’s focus is on being the PRAISING CHURCH! Last Sunday we talked about worship and we learned that worship happens when God is revealed, When I choose to remember and when I choose to respond!

To start things off this morning, I want to share a video clip from a movie. The movie is Men in Black. Let me give you a brief synopsis of the movie while they are getting it set up in the back.

Men in Black is an agency designed to protect planet earth from aliens. It’s a secret agency and it’s workers are hand selected to join. Will Smith’s character is one who have been selected to try out for this agency…let’s watch…

SERMON ILLUSTRATION: Men In Black.

Begin video with Will Smith’s character at the training center for Men In Black. He arrives late. He says, “Excuse me, but why are we here?” A marine promptly stands up and says, “We are here because you’re looking for the best of the best sir!” Will laughs and says, “This guy is just really excited to be here and he doesn’t have a clue why he’s here!” STOP VIDEO WITH: “But ya’ll ain’t laughing”

Why are you here? Are you like the officer who is really excited to be here on Sunday morning but have no idea why? To offer the best of the best, sir! (with honor!)

T.S.: We have gathered here together, to specifically WORSHIP our God. Today, I want to remind you that worshipping your God, means you BRING YOUR BEST!

Bringing your best, means leaving our worst! I realize that I’m imperfect. I also realize that God is perfect! And so trying to worship a perfect God will always be somewhat inadequate. But we can still shoot for excellence in our worship!!!

T.S.: BRINGING YOUR BEST MEANS:

1. YOU ARE PREPARED TO WORSHIP

The Boy Scouts’ motto is: Always Prepared! This needs to become your motto when you walk through those double doors on Sunday morning! It only makes sense that when we meet our creator, we would want to prepare for that encounter!

A. PHYSICALLY PREPARED

--Old Testament Exodus 12:1-11

Chapter 12 reveals the details of the first organized worship service. It was the Israelites RESPONSE to who God is (REVELATION) and what God had done for them (REMEMBERANCE)! That’s worship!

--The Israelites:

Talk about preparation! The Israelites had to be physically prepared!

The Israelites would have to take a year old MALE lambs without defect (vs. 5)

The Israelites would have to slaughter them at twilight (vs. 6)

The Israelites would paint the outside of their doorframes with some of the lamb’s blood (vs. 7)

The Israelites would have to eat it with collected herbs and bread made without yeast (vs. 8)

The Israelites had to make a fire to cook the lamb (vs. 9)

The Israelites had to burn the leftovers (vs. 10)

They had to eat it with their cloak tucked into their belt, sandals on their feet and staffs in hand. (vs. 11)

These were all the things the Israelites did PHYSICALLY to prepare for the worship feast! Without doing these things, worship of God wouldn’t happen!

--You:

I know several of you have prepared physically to worship this morning! Without some of the physical preparations that have been made your worship wouldn’t happen here on Sunday morning!

--The Praise team got together at some point during this week and practiced the

songs! Instruments were tuned. Albert set up the stage with mics, monitors,

and music stands.

--The Communion preparers at some point before meeting today prepared the

Lord’s supper

--Church cleaners cleaned our building so we could worship! And this week

wasn’t easy with the dreaded dry wall dust that accumulated everywhere!!!!

--The Bulletins were folded by Sharon and Gene Wheatley!

--I prepared this morning’s message!

--Sunday school teachers prepared their lessons!

MUCH PHYSICAL PREPARATION GOES INTO MAKING OUR WORSHIP SERVICE HAPPEN THE WAY YOU’RE USED TO!

But even more important than the physical preparation that takes place, is the SPIRITUAL PREPARATION!

(B. SPIRITUALLY PREPARED!)

--You:

--How about you?

Did you come prepared to worship this morning?

ILLUSTRATION: At the beginning of our worship together, a simple slide with a profound message is displayed. This morning’s read:

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