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What God wants

Micah  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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God desires character, not sacrifice

Notes & Transcripts

What God wants

Introduction

Micah 6:6–8 ESV
6 “With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? 7 Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?” 8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
Micah 6:6–8 ESV
6 “With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? 7 Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?” 8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
Christianity Today, a popular Christian magazine defined a “cult” as follows:
“Q. What is a cult? And how does someone know if the faith they are following is harmful?
A. The word cult has three definitions. First of all, it can simply be a group that loves something.
When people refer to an "Elvis cult" or "The O.C. cult," they mean really devoted fans.
The second definition is that of a religion whose beliefs differ from the majority around them.
In the Roman Empire, Christians were sometimes considered a cult because they worshiped Jesus rather than the Roman gods.
The third, and most commonly used definition, refers to a religious group that is:
1) Exclusive. They may say, "We're the only ones with the truth; everyone else is wrong; and if you leave our group your salvation is in danger."
2) Secretive. Certain teachings are not available to outsiders or they're presented only to certain members, sometimes after taking vows of confidentiality.
3) Authoritarian. A human leader expects total loyalty and unquestioned obedience.”
False religious belief systems have been popular since the beginning of time.
Today, even in Pretoria, there are a number of false belief systems.
What makes them popular is the very strict and clear rules.
People also prefer an authoritarian leader to whom the can look up to.
It leave the average person with less or no responsibility.
“Hitler made me do it.”
“Stalin forced me to....”
“The devil caused me to...”
gives us three action items for us to do, so that we please God.
“What does God want from me?” is a very important and regular question to ask.
We however tend to ask this question wanting God to tell me what to do next with my life:
Job, Relationship, Home, Country.
We want detail.
What does God want from me? I want to do only what God wants from me.
Relationship,
God, however, is less interested for us to know the detail of our lives, and more interested in the how we do the detail of our lives.
God is passionate about a living relationship with us.
Home,
The LORD wants true worship.
The verses for today is divided into two parts:
Part 1 gives us the context of the actions God requires.
Part 2 gives us three activities God wants us to do.

Part 1 - Context of our actions

Micah 6:6–7 ESV
6 “With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? 7 Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?”
With what shall I “come before”...
This is a question of worship.
Approaching the LORD in an attitude of true worship.
is an example of a song that asks and answers the worshipful approach question.
Micah asks and answers the “worshipful approach question:
What does the LORD want?
Burnt offerings and calves a year old?
Is that what God wants?
It is the Old Testament after all, and burnt offerings and calves were part of true Biblical worship.
(Note and )
As if Micah wants us to know that no sacrifice from man is acceptable to God, Micah goes beyond the Biblical requirements in verse 7.
God is “pleased” and can be “pleased” according to and others.
God is especially pleased when we obey His word.
It is impossible to worship God - or please Him - if you disobey His direct instructions.
Micah makes the point that it is impossible to please God with what we bring to Him,
But, God is please with those people who do as He commands.
We all know and appreciate , but listen to:
John 3:36 ESV
36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life; whoever does not obey the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God remains on him.
So, the context of , is that of true worship.
Verse 8 gives us the short but very important answer to the question.

Part 2 - Three Activities true worshipers can do to please God.

Micah 6:8 ESV
8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
The three activities are:
Do justice
Love kindness
Walk humbly

Do Justice

Isaiah 42:1 ESV
1 Behold my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights; I have put my Spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the nations.
Romans 3:20 ESV
20 For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.
Romans 3:23–24 ESV
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,
Rom 3:24
So, we receive justification as a gift;
Should we then respond with in-justice?
We know that we can not loose our justification - eternal salvation - so why do anything?
Romans 6:1 ESV
1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound?
Romans 6:1–2 ESV
1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? 2 By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it?
Micah said what Paul confirmed to the Roman church.
Because God did all that was needed to save you from eternal condemnation - under God’s law, you may as well and will want to do what is right.
You want to do Justice.
How?
Obey the words of the Bible.
This includes knowing what the Bible says.
It also includes obeying the law of the land up to that point where the law of the land goes against the law of God.
How are you doing on:
Taxes, e-tolls, speed limits, traffic lights…?

2. Love Kindness

Galatians 5:22 ESV
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
Colossians 3:12 ESV
12 Put on then, as God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience,
Kindness is a command because kindness only comes naturally when we like someone.
How about in traffic, in the queue at the licensing office, on the phone with the telemarketer?
Kindness as what God is towards you every day.
We could do better, and be better at being good witnesses of who God is by being kind.
Love kindness means to default to kindness in every situation.
Only be un-kind if kindness does not help.

3. Walk humbly

This verse is convincing:
James 4:
James 4:6 ESV
6 But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”
God’s kindness causes Him to give more grace - God does that by opposing pride and giving more grace to the humble.
When you walk humbly before God, He gives more grace.
What does “humble” look like?
You don’t always know better.
You don’t always want to be the centre of attention.
You listen in order to understand.
You do what Peter said:
1 Peter 5:6 ESV
6 Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you,
Again, it is a command because humility does not come naturally, even to Christians.
Charles Spurgeon said: “Each person has a choice between being humble or being humbled”.
How will you know if you are walking humbly?
Here are some suggestions from Marci Ferrel:
A humble person trusts in God’s sovereignty.

10 Marks of Humble Person:

1. They trust in the sovereignty of God.

They see themselves rightly before their Creator and know that God is perfect in all His judgments and don't feel the need to question God. ()

2. They are thankful people.

They give thanks to the Lord in all things.  (�)

3.  They are in awe of God's goodness and grace towards them.

We are sinners that were destined and deserving of Hell, and our gracious Saviour raised us from the dead and gave us new life in Christ.
All undeserved.  
This is one I need to be mindful of always. (�,9📷).

4.  They can rejoice with others.

We need to take our eyes off of ourselves because it takes selflessness to rejoice with others.  
Battling self is the issue we must overcome to rejoice with others (�).

5.  They practice unity based on their salvation.  

The reality is we are never going to see eye to eye on everything with everyone.
We are not to set aside doctrinal truth and compromise the Gospel in any way, but we are to set aside personal preferences for the sake of unity. (�)

6.  They are not wise in their own eyes.  

The sin of intellectual pride is ugly.  
Adam and Eve thought they knew more than God and that led to disaster.  
Leon Morris states it well, “The person who is wise in his own eyes is rarely so in the eyes of other people.” (�)

7.  They forgive quickly because they have been forgiven much.  

They are mindful of the Gospel and the forgiveness they have received in Christ.
They desire to be peacemakers. (�)

8. They have a teachable spirit.

They understand that they don't know everything and can learn much from others by listening.  (�,7📷)

9.  They build others up.  

If we applied 📷 in our lives there would be much peace in our homes and churches.  
“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” ~

10.  They have servants hearts.  

They are washing the feet of the saints.
Loving and serving others is the mark of their lives.  (�).
True worshipers who want to please God and not themselves first:
Do Justice
Love Mercy and
Walk Humbly
Before God.

Conclusion:

Do you want to worship God?
The way He wants to be worshiped?
You don’t have to bring sacrifices,
You don’t have to read the Bible all week long.
You do not have to spend 8 hours on your knees praying.
You don’t have to give 90% of your money to the church.
You now know, what God requires of you.
Act Justly - do what is right - in everything
Love Mercy - be kind to everyone - especially the ones who get you upset.
Walk humbly - look out for opportunities where you can show others that they are more important than you.
Doing these three activities regularly, as you live, will place you in a true worship with God.
Amen.
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