Today's Word for Pastors...
If, in fact, Abraham was justified by works, he had something to boast about--but not before God. What does the Scripture say? "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness."
Today's Preaching Insight...
It's Not About You
We make statements that are saturated with self as if worship is all about us:
- "Why can't we sing more of the songs that I like?"
- "I don't think the preacher should talk about this or that!"
- "I can't believe so-and-so didn't talk to me today!"
- "No one ever notices what I do in the church."
Here's the problem: Worship isn't about getting anything; it's about giving everything to God! The above attitudes make us idle judges of activity rather than active participants in adoration toward a holy God. Christian consumerism defines the quality of our worship by the number of ministries for people, the size and quality of our buildings, the popularity of our pastors, the style of our music and an obvious determination to make people happy. One concern emerges as primary: "What have you done for me lately?"
Unfortunately, we still fall short of making everyone happy, and God is disgusted with our obvious worship of and preoccupation with ourselves. Our efforts to be seeker-sensitive and self-sensitive have made us insensitive to the Divine Presence who is to be the focus of our worship. Or, as the apostle Paul said, we have "exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator" (Romans 1:25).]
(To read the full sermon, "It's Not About You" by Adam Dooley at Preaching.com, click here)
There is an old Far Side comic that illustrates the power of perspective. As with many of Gary Larson's comics, it contains animals that behave like people. There is a family of dogs deep in an underground fallout shelter, while there is a nuclear holocaust on the surface. One of the dogs says, "Well, we must face a new reality. No more carefree days of chasing squirrels, running through the park, or howling at the moon. On the other hand, no more, ‘Fetch the stick, boy, fetch the stick.'"
Preaching magazine is the premier resource for those who proclaim the Word. To begin your own subscription and get a free year of issues, go to http://magazine.preaching.com/subscribe/.