ETS Sermon 012614, Intimacy Through Worship, Luke 1:49

Please notice that a new scripture has been added at the bottom of the page, Revelation 4:1-11. Also notice the the worship video has been changed. The initial video had video clarity issues. In the new video, God appears in the very striking scene of worship as the King of heaven and earth.

Through our church’s weekly Friday evening Sabbath worship services, we have a desire to instill a mind of true worship in the minds of our members, and of believers in Christ throughout the world. We view true worship as that which is described by Jesus during His discussion with the woman at the well in John Chapter 4. The question that was raised by the woman dealt with the logistics of worship (place, day, time), as opposed to the necessity of intimacy of worship. The answer to the woman’s question was answered very directly, and understandably by Jesus. His answer to the woman is recorded in verses 23-24, ” 23 But an hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth. Yes, the Father wants such people to worship Him. 24 God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” To worship God in spirit and truth can be stated as follows: “all of us for all of Him!” That form of worship can only come through an intimate relationship with God. It’s not a going or a doing. Again, it is “all of us for all of Him.” We are choosing a time for worship that has an intimacy of time that matches the intimacy of completion of God’s unmatched creative work of our world. Genesis 1:31-2:3, “31 God saw all that He had made, and it was very good. Evening came and then morning:the sixth day. 1 So the heavens and the earth and everything in them were completed. 2 By the seventh day God completed His work that He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work that He had done. 3 God blessed the seventh day and declared it holy, for on it He rested from His work of creation.” As we enter each service of Sabbath Worship, we will read from each creative day’s activity, “and the evening and the day were the … first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth day … and God saw that it was very good.” “And on the seventh day, God ended His work … and He rested.”

Intimacy is expressed during times of dining. It was during Passover, immediately prior to the passion of Jesus, that He chose that meal to explain to His disciples the reality of the events that would soon follow. After Passover, He would give His life, and would not have passover with them again until ….. when they would celebrate Passover again in the Kingdom of God (the Millennium). The Passover discourse, the bread and the cup, told the disciples of the death of Jesus, and is described as follows, in Luke 22:7-22:

7 Then came the day of Unleavened Bread on which the Passover lamb had to be sacrificed. 8 Jesus sent Peter and John, saying, “Go and make preparations for us to eat the Passover.” 9 “Where do you want us to prepare for it?” they asked. 10 He replied, “As you enter the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him to the house that he enters, 11 and say to the owner of the house, ‘The Teacher asks: Where is the guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’12 He will show you a large room upstairs, all furnished. Make preparations there.” 13They left and found things just as Jesus had told them. So they prepared the Passover. 14 When the hour came, Jesus and his apostles reclined at the table. 15 And he said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. 16 For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God.” 17 After taking the cup, he gave thanks and said, “Take this and divide it among you. 18 For I tell you I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes.” 19And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” 20 In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. 21 But the hand of him who is going to betray me is with mine on the table. 22The Son of Man will go as it has been decreed. But woe to that man who betrays him!”

Intimacy is also described by Jesus as being the text book definition of eternal life. In verse three, of John Chapter 17, eternal life is described as being the result of “knowing God.” The word “know” means to have an intimate relationship with someone. It is not only “Knowing God,” but also knowing God the Father through God the Son, who is Jesus. So, in order for us to have eternal life with God, we must have an intimate relationsnip with God the Father, through God the Son, Jesus. The passage of John 17:1-3 is as follows:

1 After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: “Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. 2 For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. 3 Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.

After the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus, He used Holy scripture, the influence of the Holy Spirit, and “the breaking of bread,” to make Himself known to the disciples. The passover meal told of the death of Jesus. This time, the bread and the cup, in the form of Holy Communion, lead to a belief in the resurrected Jesus. What is clearly obvious is there is no mention of “partaking in an unworthy manner. (another subject for another time).” The intimacy of relationship through Holy Communion is shown in Luke 24:25-35, as follows:

25 He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself. 28 As they approached the village to which they were going, Jesus continued on as if he were going farther. 29 But they urged him strongly, “Stay with us, for it is nearly evening; the day is almost over.” So he went in to stay with them. 30 When he was at the table with them, he took bread, gave thanks, broke it and began to give it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened and they recognized him, and he disappeared from their sight. 32 They asked each other, “Were not our hearts burning within us while he talked with us on the road and opened the Scriptures to us?”
33 They got up and returned at once to Jerusalem. There they found the Eleven and those with them, assembled together 34 and saying, “It is true! The Lord has risen and has appeared to Simon.” 35 Then the two told what had happened on the way, and how Jesus was recognized by them when he broke the bread.

Our church meets twice weekly, on Monday and Friday evenings. Such a schedule allows us to meet the needs of people who may not be able to attend traditional services. In all of our services we attempt to equip people to be better able to answer why they have such a belief in Jesus as being their Lord and Savior. Also, we try to provide the spiritual tools that are needed for effective evangelizing. We encourage members of other churches to join us, as we are very proactive in our approach to fulfilling the “Great Commission (Matthew 28:18-20)” Of course, without a true worship of God, all of this would be for nothing. Please consider the worship hymn after you read the two scripture passages.

Luke 1:49, “..His Name is Holy.”

Revelation 4:1-11, “The Throne Room In Heaven,” “1 After this I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven! And the first voice, which I had heard speaking to me like a trumpet, said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.” 2 At once I was in the Spirit, and behold, a throne stood in heaven, with one seated on the throne. 3 And he who sat there had the appearance of jasper and carnelian, and around the throne was a rainbow that had the appearance of an emerald. 4 Around the throne were twenty-four thrones, and seated on the thrones were twenty-four elders, clothed in white garments, with golden crowns on their heads. 5 From the throne came flashes of lightning, and rumblings and peals of thunder, and before the throne were burning seven torches of fire, which are the seven spirits of God, 6 and before the throne there was as it were a sea of glass, like crystal.

And around the throne, on each side of the throne, are four living creatures, full of eyes in front and behind: 7 the first living creature like a lion, the second living creature like an ox, the third living creature with the face of a man, and the fourth living creature like an eagle in flight. 8 And the four living creatures, each of them with six wings, are full of eyes all around and within, and day and night they never cease to say,

“Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord God Almighty,
who was and is and is to come!”

9 And whenever the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to him who is seated on the throne, who lives forever and ever, 10 the twenty-four elders fall down before him who is seated on the throne and worship him who lives forever and ever. They cast their crowns before the throne, saying,

11 “Worthy are you, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they existed and were created.”

Author: Equipping Site

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