Summary: In Nehemiah 9 we see a Portrait of the God we worship in the prayer of the Levites. We see a God who is to be praised, a God who keeps his promises and a God who is patient.
The God We Worship
Intro: A fifth grade teacher in a Christian school asked her class to look at TV commercials and see if they could use them in some way to communicate ideas about God. Here are some of the results:
GOD is like a FORD ... He’s got a better idea.
GOD is like COKE ... He’s the real thing.
GOD is like HALLMARK CARDS ... He cares enough to send His very best.
GOD is like TIDE ... He gets the stains out that others leave behind.
GOD is like GENERAL ELECTRIC ... He brings good things to life.
GOD is like SEARS ... He has everything.
GOD is like ALKA-SELTZER ... Try Him, you’ll like him.
GOD is like SCOTCH TAPE ... You can’t see him, but you know He’s there.
GOD is like DELTA .... He’s ready when you are.
GOD is like ALLSTATE ... You’re in good hands with Him.
GOD is like VO-5 HAIR SPRAY ... He holds through all kinds of weather.
GOD is like DIAL SOAP ... Aren’t you glad you have Him.
Don’t you wish everybody did?
. Our sermon title this morning is The God We Worship
. We are back in Nehemiah this morning.
. When last we were in Nehemiah, we saw the people gathered for worship after the walls and gates had been finished.
. Our scripture this morning we see the people back in a worship service.
. The last worship service they had was 23 days ago and they were ready for worship.
. There are many things we see in this scripture but what I want to bring out four things this morning.
. First, The God we worship is to be praised.
.Look at verses 1-5 with me.
. 1On October 31 the people assembled again, and this time they fasted and dressed in burlap and sprinkled dust on their heads.
2Those of Israelite descent separated themselves from all foreigners as they confessed their own sins and the sins of their ancestors.
3They remained standing in place for three hours while the Book of the Law of the LORD their God was read aloud to them. Then for three more hours they confessed their sins and worshiped the LORD their God.
4The Levites—Jeshua, Bani, Kadmiel, Shebaniah, Bunni, Sherebiah, Bani, and Kenani—stood on the stairway of the Levites and cried out to the LORD their God with loud voices.
5Then the leaders of the Levites—Jeshua, Kadmiel, Bani, Hashabneiah, Sherebiah, Hodiah, Shebaniah, and Pethahiah—called out to the people: “Stand up and praise the LORD your God, for he lives from everlasting to everlasting!” Then they prayed:
“May your glorious name be praised! May it be exalted above all blessing and praise!
. The God we worship is to be praised.
. Look at verse 5 again
. 5Then the leaders of the Levites…called out to the people: “Stand up and praise the LORD your God, for he lives from everlasting to everlasting!...”
. The Jewish people knew how to worship folks.
. They would stand for hours praising and worshipping the Lord.
. They confessed their sin to God, asked for forgiveness and then they worshipped.
. They were excited about worship.
. Todd Cogent was the Chaplain for the Houston Oilers and Astros many years ago. He said that after he would have chapel services they would give him tickets for the game.
. One time when he was at the oilers game in the astrodome he watched Earl Campbell run over everybody, his own men included, to get to the goal line.
When he got to the goal line, he put the ball down.
The place went crazy.
People were giving high fives and jumping around.
The scoreboard went off.
The same thing happened when the Astros hit a home run.
It was a ringing shout, because their man scored a touchdown.
.There was praise for the team. Praise for the one who hit the home run or scored the touchdown.
. Shouldn’t our praise for our god be as great as the praise we give others?
. I’m not saying that we should run up and down the aisles giving each other high fives but worship is an event that should be full of anticipation and expectation.
.We come together because all week God has been knocking home runs and scoring touchdowns in our lives.
Worship is a time to celebrate what God has done for us.
. We may have had a great week and we are praising Him for that or we may have had a down week but we praise Him for that also.
. We praise Him because through ups and downs He walks with us and strengthens us.
. The God we worship is worthy of our praise.