Summary: Our worship and adoration is a sweet smelling fragrance in the nostrils of God!
I. A New Fragrance
A. Text: II Corinthians 2:14-16 “…thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life.”
B. Go with me to Luke 24. Let’s read verses 1-3
“On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.” (NIV)
C. After the death of Jesus, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James and Salome –the spice girls - went to His tomb to anoint His body. This would begin their embalming process, to keep the body from smelling.
D. When they arrived, they found the stone rolled away and the tomb empty.
E. Now, these ladies had the right intentions. But, how many of you know that good intentions often times lead you to and empty tomb? Good intentions are usually a dead-end road.
F. You see, these ladies had come to anoint a dead body. They had come to anoint a dead Jesus that had already promised that He would be raised on the third day!
G. Folks, I have good news for you today (and it’s not even the Easter season)….I have good news, folks…..He got up! He’s not dead! He has risen, just as He said He would! Hallelujah!
H. By their coming to pour spices and fragrances on the body of Christ, this was their last chance to offer their praise to Him.
I. There was only one problem…He wasn’t there!
J. Folks, you can’t praise a dead god anyway! No matter how hard you try!
K. You can’t anoint and offer fragrant worship to a dead god!
II. Sweet Smelling Worship
A. Did you know that God desires your worship – that it is a sweet smelling fragrance – and incense – in the nostrils of God!?
B. Folks, God has the sense of smell.
C. And there are various Scripture references that show us what God likes to smell, and what He doesn’t like to smell.
D. In Genesis 8:20, when Noah – after the flood – had built an altar to God – an altar of thanksgiving and worship – an altar offering a sacrifice of praise to God – the Word tells us it was a sweet smelling aroma to God!
E. All throughout Exodus and Leviticus, and Numbers it speaks of the sweet smelling incense offered up to God through a burnt offering.
F. Worship is a sweet aroma in the nostrils of God!
G. True worship will be worship that is offered to the Living God! From a heart that is alive.
H. Don’t try and offer the perfumes of praise to God if you are spiritually dead in your praise yourself.
I. God said, in Malachi 1:11 – “My name will be great among the nations, from the rising to the setting of the sun. In every place incense and pure offerings will be brought to my name, because my name will be great among the nations,’ says the LORD Almighty.” (NIV)
J. But, folks, you can’t worship Him like He’s dead. Your worship cannot be dead. Your spirit cannot be dead! Your heart cannot be dead.
K. You see, these ‘spice girls’ came with a broken heart – a grieving heart – to anoint a dead king. But, He wasn’t there, because He wasn’t dead any longer!
L. Folks, God no longer wants your “Old Spice!” He wants a fresh worship, a fresh praise; He wants a worship that is alive because He is alive! Put away the “Old Spice” in the name of Jesus!
III. What’s That I Smell?
A. It all is dependant upon how you come to Him to worship Him!
B. These women came to anoint Him thinking He was dead.
C. There was another time when Mary came to anoint Him as she poured the oil over Him.
D. Look at Matthew chapter 26. This woman mentioned here is assumed to be Mary Magdalene. Look at verses 6-26
“While Jesus was in Bethany in the home of a man known as Simon the Leper, a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, which she poured on his head as he was reclining at the table. When the disciples saw this, they were indignant. ‘Why this waste?’ they asked. ‘This perfume could have been sold at a high price and the money given to the poor.’ Aware of this, Jesus said to them, ‘Why are you bothering this woman? She has done a beautiful thing to me. The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me. When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial. I tell you the truth, wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.’”