Summary: How does your enthusiasm for your interests and pastimes compare to your enthusiasm for God?
A fanatic is a person with an extreme enthusiasm for something.
• Celebrity fanatics
• Sports fanatics
• Home decorating fanatics
• Car fanatics
• Money fanatics
• TV and movie fanatics
• Shopping fanatics
• Family fanatics
How does your enthusiasm for your interests and pastimes compare to your enthusiasm for God?
Worship = the PRAISE and DEVOTION we give to God because of who He is and what He has done.
O LORD, you are my God; I will exalt you and praise your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done marvelous things, things planned long ago (Isaiah 25:1).
...let us be thankful and please God by worshiping him with holy fear [reverence] and awe (Hebrews 12:28 NLT).
► God made us to be worshipers, not fanatics.
THE WORSHIP GOD DESIRES
1. God ALONE is worthy of our worship.
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” (Mark 10:30).
► Everyone is a worshiper. We either worship God or something else.
Anything we allow to control our lives is our god.
a. When God is not the recipient of our worship, we provoke His JEALOUSY.
“You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol... You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God...” (Exodus 20:3-5).
“Do not worship any other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God” (Exodus 34:14).
“I will not share my glory with idols!” (Isaiah 48:11 NLT).
“Do not bow down before their gods or worship them or follow their practices. You must demolish them and break their sacred stones to pieces. Worship the LORD your God...” (Exodus 23:24-25).
► Is there an idol in your life that needs to be demolished?
b. When God is not the recipient of our worship, we rob ourselves of our greatest JOY and our supreme PURPOSE.
Westminster Larger Catechism: Question: “What is the chief and highest end of man? Answer: Man’s chief and highest end is to glorify God, and fully to enjoy him forever.”
You have made known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand (Psalm 16:11).
Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you (Psalm 73:25).
One thing I ask of the LORD, this is what I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple (Psalm 27:4).
How lovely is your dwelling place, O LORD Almighty! My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God (Psalm 84:1-2).
A single day in your courts is better than a thousand anywhere else! (Psalm 84:10 NLT).
2. God demands GENUINE worship.
“A time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth” (John 4:23-24).
The Samaritan woman wanted to know what the proper place of worship was: Mount Gerizim, where the Samaritans worshiped or Jerusalem, where the Jews worshiped. Jesus’ answer reveals that the important question is not where we should worship God but how we should worship Him.
The LORD says, “These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me” (Isaiah 29:13).
We can’t fake out God.
► A true worshiper is someone whose WORDS match his or her HEART.
THE TRUE “SPIRIT OF CHRISTMAS”
During December, what’s the first question people ask you? “Have you finished your Christmas shopping yet?”
The idol of Christmastime is MATERIALISM.
...greed [covetousness KJV], which is idolatry (Colossians 3:5).
Sadly, at Christmastime people worship the things money can buy rather that the God who sent His Son into the world to be our Savior.
The true “spirit of Christmas” is WORSHIP.
The story of Christmas is filled with worship:
• Mary – “My soul glorifies [magnifies NKJV] the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior” (Luke 1:46-47).
• The angels – Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God saying, “Glory to God in the highest...” (Luke 2:13-14).
• The shepherds – The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen... (Luke 2:20).
• The wise men – On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him (Matthew 2:11).