Title: Giving is Worship
Focus: We bring offerings to God not because he "needs" anything from us, but to acknowledge him as the source of all things and to give our thanks to him.
Function: To help the hearers to participate in the act of giving as worship and not as merely "paying the bills"
Text: Lev 3; 7:11-17
Intro: 1. Tonight will cover last of three freewill offerings 2. Difficulty in how to translate “Shelamim” (Peace Offering) a. Various Bibles translate it peace, shared, fellowship, communion, freindship, well being b. Root from Shalem c. Have heard the word “Shalom” meaning, peace, or well-being d. Either peace of fellowship probably communicate idea 3. Text: Leviticus 3 4. Several things we learn about worship to God I. Approaching God begins with freewill gifts A. Instructions for offering begin with freewill (not obligatory) offerings B. The motivation for coming to God is joy, not obligation 1. Psalm 122 - Expresses sheer joy of approaching God 2. There are whole group of Psalms called Songs of Ascent a. What they for? b. When make journey to the sanctuary c. They singing, bringing their gifts to God! 3. (2 Cor 9:7) - Let each do just as he has purposed in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheeful giver C. ILL: Korea, Grandma going to visit someone 1. Wrapped up some fantastic looking pears and some flowers a. She humming as she did so b. Put on some clean clothes, die hair 2. To me, her grandson along with her 3. Customary to bring gifts in Korea 4. That is what we are to do when we come before the Lord D. What do we bring? 1. First thought come to mind is offering of money 2. (Heb 13:15-16) - Sacrifice of praise and sharing 3. That encompasses all we do - It is an offering to God II. Our offerings acknowledge God as the source of blessings A. All life, harvests, health comes from God B. Notice what part of offering reserved for God 1. The blood 17:11 - life of the flesh is in the blood a. All life comes to God b. It to be sprinkled around altar 2. The fat and certain entrails a. Fat best tasting, where aroma and flavor come from b. Entrails considered delicacy 3. But fat also refer to best part - (Num 18:12) C. ILL: Dad always take kids and sneak off to Dairy Queen 1. There was something emotional about ice cream 2. Told me one day about special time growing up 3. His mom gave him 50 cent allowance a week 4. Got ice cream and shared it with his mom - special time 5. Wanted to share with mom who gave him gift D. When we bring gifts to God, we acknowledge all comes from him 1. Earth is the Lord’s and all in it 2. All belongs to him, but we offer a portion to thank him 3. He hasn’t “given” it to us as owners, but makes us stewards 4. We get to share in the blessings of his blessing III. Our offerings express thanksgiving to God A. That is why they are called “offerings” not sacrifice B. (Lev 7:11-17) Thanksgiving a motivation for Fellowship Offering 1. Like my Dad who shared in thanksgiving with his mother, the offering expresses thanksgiving to God 2. It involves eating a portion of the sacrifice together 3. 3:11 Calls it a “food offering” to the Lord a. Mean God needs to eat? b. God not “need” anything from us 4. (Ps 50:7-15) a. It all belongs to God anyway b. What God wants is not the sacrifice itself, but a sacrifice of thanksgiving C. ILL: Stacey worked tail off with at risk kids 1. Every day a new challenge, but kids improved 2. One of the kids said “thank you” 3. It made her day 4. We all like to be appreciated, don’t you think God does too? D. Let’s spend more time thanking God for specifics 1. We don’t have to offer an animal to express thanks to God, though the turkey gets it on thanksgiving 2. Let’s offer sacrifice of thanksgiving Concl: 1. When we put money into collection plate, it not just to pay the bills, it is not our “dues” or a “fee” 2. It is worship, approaching God will a gift a. To acknowledge he is the source of our blessings b. To express thanksgiving to God 3. The main offering we offer is ourself (Rom 12:1) 4. Have you become a living sacrifice for God?