Title: Acceptable Service
Purpose: To move Christians to be Reverent toward God



Intro:	1.  Everyone hates to be disrespected
	2.  Context:
		a.  Maintain faithful confidence/confession
		b.  Lay aside encumberance
		c.  Recognize struggle as discipline (examples of faith)
		d.  Support one another in the struggle
		e.  Do not refuse/ ignore God (listen to him)
			-Without God, no escape from his wrath or from destruction
			-With God we receive an enverlasting Kingdom
	3.  This morning will focus on second part of exhortation (Heb. 12:28)
		a.  Offer God Acceptable service  (Latrueo - ďto serveĒ   includes worship)
		b.  Must be acceptable service
			-  It means that there is such thing as unacceptable service
			-  No days many feel can approach God however they please
			-  God is specific in his word about HOW he wants to be served
	4.  So how do we render acceptable service to God?
		-Starts with gratitude, but before get into that, start with what is says next


I.  Acceptable service is with Reverence and Awe
	A.  Or respect and fear
	B.  Must understand nature of God in order to reverence and awe
		1.  What is most prominent attribute of God?  (God is love?.. justice...)
		2.  I Sam 2:2 - No one Holy like God, (God is distinct from his creation)
		3.  Isaiah 6:1-3 (also in Rev. 4:8)
			a.  This is the only attribute raised to the third degree
			b.  Modifier of all other attributes (holy love, holy justice,  etc.)
			c.  Is 6:2 - Seraphim covered face and feet.  Why?
				-  Ex 19:12 - Not touch mountain
				-  Ex 19:20 - Set bounds, not break through to gaze & die
				-  Ex 33:18-23 - Canít see God and live
		4.  Trauma in encountering Godís holiness (two examples)
			a.  Isaiah 6:3-7 - ďWoe is meĒ
			b.  Lk 5:8 - Depart from me for I am a sinful man (Peter)
			c.  Why did they react in this way?
				-  They knew God was holy
				-  They knew they were sinful
	C.  Does fear God mean run from him?  (no place to Go)
		1.  Lifeguard fears the water, but doesnít run from it
			- He understands HOW to approach the water
		2.  Fear of God means understanding HOW to approach God
			-He doesnít leave his people guessing
			-Uzzah incident in 2 Sam 6:7 - No one was to touch the Ark
			-Is this extreme?  GOD IS HOLY, DO NOT DISREGARD
		4.  These that encoutered Godís holiness feared/respected him
	D.  How would you react
		1.  Many today see God as tame lame jolly Grandfather of love, and that's all
		2.  Not understanding holiness, they are unimpressed with God
			a.  See him as incidental in life
			b.  Service becomes a liesure time activity
			c.  Focus becomes on self - happiness and fulfillment all consuming
		3.  Signs:  ďTry JesusĒ / Radio: ďI talked to God todayĒ just a buddy
			a.  But doesnít the text say approach throne of grace with confidence?
			b.  Yes, but remember, even though we are priests, it is still a throne
			c.  This text says he is a consuming fire!!
	E.  So, acceptable worship involves reverance, fear, and awe
		1.  To ignore how he wants to be served is to be irreverent
		2.  Yet so many say, "Iím going to do things my way." 
			a.  Iíll worship God at the lake while fishing on Sunday 
			b.  Iíll read only to win an arguement 
			c.  Iíll pray only when I need something 
			d.  Iíll go to any old church, it doesnít matter what they teach 
			e.  Iíll leave God on a shelf until I need him at my health club church
		3.  Why these problems?  Not grasped concept of his holiness
		4.  Service is to be with reverence (fear, respect) and awe.


The reason we started with this first is in order to fully appreciate and give thanks to God 
for his grace, you MUST understand something of his holiness.  Leads us to next point:


II.  We must show gratitude in order to render acceptable service
	A.  God doesnít want begrudging service
		1.  How would you feel:  Husband - If I have to support you and work, okay
			a.  Wife:  If I have have to clean and cook, I will
			b.  If I have to kiss you before going to work okay
		2.  How would that make you feel? 
		3.  WHY would we think God would be satisfied with that kind of service?
	B.  Gratitude is the KEY to giving God acceptable service and worship
		1.  Closely related words:  Joy/Rejoice and Praise -- This is worship
		2.  Lordís Supper - I Cor 11:24 - "Blessing" (We say blessing - give thanks)
		3.  Phil 4:6 - Thanksigving even when make requests
			a.  Hardship = Discipline
			b.  Because Godís children and he loves us
		4.  I Thess 5:16-18 - In EVERYTHING give thanks (song)
	C.  ILL:  Matthew Henry got robbed and wrote in diary:
		ďLet me be thankful first because I was never robbed before, second 
		because although they took my purse, they did not take my life, third, 
		because although they took it all, it was not much and fourth, because it 
		was I who was robbed, and not I who robbed.Ē
			-What a great Godly disposition to have!
	D.  Satan will give you all kinds of things to complain about
		1.  He will blind you to Godís blessings
		2.  I have lost count of the folks that have complained themselves right 
		    out of a relationship with God.  No longer with us
	E.  What to do?
		1.  Express gratitude, be gracious
		2.  Tell God, tell others
		3.  Stacey and I have learned to be happy no matter where we live


Concl:
1.  You have an unshakable inheritance nothing will touch
2.  Be thankful and with that you can render God acceptable service
3.  Remember acceptale service mean you offer it
	a.  With reverence and awe
	b.  With thanksgiving
4.  If you start to complain, stop and give God a blessing which exceeds complaints
	a.  Count blessings, they will outnumber them
	b.  Blessings will cancel out any negative
5.  Recognize his holiness, serve him every day HIS way, not yours
	a.  Donít say (Oh, Iíll do it my way -- remember Uzzah - best intentions)
	b.  Serve our holy God with gratitude and respect