Summary: What offering are you giving the Lord?
INTRO: A hen and a pig approached a church and read the advertised sermon topic: “What can we do to help the poor?” Immediately the hen suggested they feed them bacon and eggs. The pig thought for a moment and said, “There is only one thing wrong with feeding bacon and eggs to the poor. For you it requires only a contribution, but for me it requires everything.”
Today, look at two brothers and one who made pleasing offerings to the Lord while the other
TITLE: What Are Our Sacrifices to God
I. The Brothers (home and job) - Gen. 4:1-16 (READ)
A. First home - divinely appointed by God, increase of the human race.
1. Male and female - together to raise a family. Not female and female, or male and male, co-parenting, transsexual relationships.
a. Home brings happiness - a safe environment where children can play and feel safe.
- a place where mom and dad can teach the ways of God.
1. Greatest teachers - Mom and dad are the greatest teachers. Who are going to make the greatest impact (+ or - ) not pastors, teachers, counselors, it’s mom and dad!
b. Home brings discipline - mom and dad discipline your children! Don’t leave it to someone else. (Teachers, pastors, police officers).
ex Logan at camp, James Dobson “Strong Willed Child”.
B. First jobs - work by the sweat of our brow, work was going to be a drudgery (after sin).
1. Cain - farmer, worked the ground for a living.
2. Abel - rancher, took care of live stock.
3. Knew their calling - Cain and Abel knew what the Lord had for each of them. What he called them in advance to do.
Jer. 1:5 - “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you. Before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
a. God’s divine purpose - God has set in advance for us to do good works according to the book of Ephesians.
- Just as God had a specific purpose for Jeremiah, he has a specific purpose for our lives. If I ask you what it is, could you answer?
-A lot of frustration comes from not knowing what God wants us to do. Where do we fit in the church, workplace, God’s will.
1. Find out - don’t just exist. Seek Gods face - “What do you want me to do.” (Church - find a need and fill it).
4. First job didn’t interfere with worshipping God!
ex Mr. Egan - football story.
a. Don’t let things come before the Lord whether it’s activities, sports, work.
-Balance (quit work to worship God and forsake your family); and on the other hand, don’t give all the reasons in the world why things are getting piled in front of the Lord!
-Excuses are the nails that built the house of failure.
1. Law of diminish returns - get less and less
ex Boundaries for church set by parents, children will usually not exceed them).
-Generally children will not be holier than their parents. It can be different but generally not.
a. Parents that’s why we have a great responsibility to the spiritual walk of our family.
I Cor. 4:16 – “Therefore, I urge you to imitate me.” Paul is writing to the church at Corinth and saying copy me as I copy Jesus.
*Parents keep a close eye on your children’s spiritual walk. Do everything to help it
b. Commend young people - doing a great job on keeping Jesus #1.
ex Joel, Derrick, Chad, Simmons
1. Mom and dad - if we say it’s OK to do something else besides church, you’re telling them it’s OK to put things above the Lord.
*Idolatry: Nation of Israel was destroyed. God is a jealous God. He wants to be #1.
II. The Brothers at Worship
A. Comparison: Born same home, educated by same parents, trained to the same duty of devotion. First brothers to become worshipers of the same God, lived in the same place, same altar, same gender (boys).
1. Offering - were not the same.
a. In matter: Cain brought fruit of the ground. Abel brought firstborn of his flock. One was a blood offering while the other was not.
b. In measure: Abel offered God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain (Heb. 11:4).
c. In meaning: Not only was his offering better (firstborn, best, blood) but it was offered in a better way (by faith).
-Bible says it’s impossible to please God without faith.
2. God accepted the one and rejected the other offering.
a. God looks for sincerity of the heart.
1. Cain was a religious man, appearance, looked the part, played the game of religion.