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Worship involves an acknowledgement of divine perfections.  It may express itself in the form of direct address, as in adoration and thanksgiving, or in service to God; it may be public, or it may be private.  Worship presupposes that God is, that He can be known by man and that His perfections set Him far above man.  Worship is filled with emotion, yet done orderly.  Worship involves action and reaction.  Worship is emotional and active.  Worship encompasses affection, excitement, submission, humility, self-denial, loyalty, allegiance, respect, love, awe, adoration, honor, service and devotion.  Worship is a deep respect, love and devotion to God expressed in direct address (telling God) and/or service (showing God).  Rom 12:1,2


Worship - Download Series

(Lesson #1)

Introduction - What is worship? - View



(Lesson #2)

Introduction - Why is God worthy of worship? - View

(1/6/2002 & 1/13/2002)


(Lesson #3)

Worship of the Patriarchs - "Cain & Abel", Noah - View

(1/16/2002 & 1/20/2002)


(Lesson #4)

Worship of the Patriarchs - Abraham, Isaac & Jacob - View

(1/23/2002 & 1/27/2002)


(Lesson #5)

Worship in the time of Moses - Tabernacle, Priesthood - View

(1/30/2002 & 2/3/2002)


(Lesson #6)

Worship in the time of Moses - Offerings, Festivals - View

(2/6/2002 & 2/10/2002)


(Lesson #7)

Worship during the monarchy - Idol worship - View







Biblical Definition

  • To kiss: like a dog licking his master's hand. (John 4:24)

  • To fawn: to show friendliness by licking hands, wagging its tail, etc., (said of a dog). (1 Peter 1:8,9; Psalms 32:11; 43:4)

  • or crouch: to stoop or bend low in a cringing, submissive behavior as a slave. (James 4:10)

  • To literally or figuratively prostrate (to lie flat being completely overcome with humility) oneself in homage (public acknowledgment of loyalty or allegiance by a servant to his lord) (Psalms 95:6,7; Matt 4:8-10)

  • to reverence: A feeling or attitude of deep respect, love and awe, as for something sacred or holy. (Acts 2:42)

  • to adore: to worship as divine; to love greatly or honor highly. (2 Peter 1:2-4; Psalms 48:1; 95:3; Matt 15:8)

  • to serve: to give obedience and reverent honor to; to work for as a servant. (Matt 4:10)


New Testament Greek words translated worship

proskuneo, The most frequent word rendered worship

proskuneo; from Greek 4314 (pros, toward) and kuneo (to kiss); to do reverence to :- bow down(1), bow down before(1), bowed down(1), bowed down before(2), bowing before(1), bowing down(1), prostrated himself before(1), worship(32), worshiped(17), worshipers(1), worships(1).

Worship to God - Matt 4:10; John 4:21-24; 1 Cor 14:25; Rev 4:10; 5:14; 7:11; 11:16; 19:10; 22:9

Worship to Christ - Matt 2:2,8,11; 8:2; 9:18; 14:33; 15:25; 20:20; 28:9,17; John 9:38

sebo; a primitive verb; to worship :- devout(m)(1), God-fearing(3), worship(4), worshiper(2). To revere, stressing the feeling of awe or devotion, is used of worship.

Worship to God - Matt 15:9; Mark 7:7; Acts 16:14; 18:7,13

Worship to a goddess - Acts 19:27

sebazomai; from a derivative of Greek 4576 (sebo); to fear, specifically to have reverential awe :- worshiped(1). Rom 1:25

latreuo; from latris (a hired servant); to serve :- offer service(1), serve(15), served(1), serving(1), worship(1), worshiper(1), worshipers(1).

To worship or serve - Phil 3:3; Acts 7:42; 24:14; Heb 10:2

The worship of God is nowhere openly defined in Scripture. A consideration of the above verbs shows that it is not confined to praise; broadly it may be regarded as the direct acknowledgement to God, of His nature, attributes, ways and claims, whether by the outgoing of the heart in praise and thanksgiving or by deed done in such acknowledgement. (W.E. Vine - An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words)

English Definition

  • WORSHIP - reverence or devotion for a deity; religious homage or veneration (to look upon with feelings of deep respect.)

  •            Comes from worth & ship.

    • Worth - Honor, value, merit, importance.

  • Ship (suffix) - the condition, quality, or state of (fellowship, friendship) the rank or office of (kingship, governorship). Denotes the worthiness of the individual receiving the special honor due to his worth.
  • Worship - the honor, reverence, and homage paid to superior beings or powers.
  • Rom 12:1,2

    What to remember:

    Worship: A deep respect, love and devotion to God expressed in direct address and/or service.

     back to contents


    Why is God worthy of worship? 

    (1/6/2002 & 1/13/2002)


    How you feel about God will affect how you worship him!

    The worship of God presupposes or assumes:

  • 1. God exists!
  • 2. God can be known by man! (personal relationship)
  • 3. God's perfections and power set him for above man!
  • 4. You need God in your life!
  • 1. God exists - What makes God real to you?!

    2 Tim 1:12 - ....for I know whom I have believed...

  • John 3:16 - For God so loved the world....
  • Romans 10:14 - How then shall they call upon Him (worship) in whom they have not believed?
  • Hebrews 11:6 - And without faith it is impossible to please Him....
  • What makes God real to you, is it:

  • The universe itself - reason demands that the universe exists because it was created by God.
  • Romans 1:18-20 - God is seen in what has been made!

    Psalms 19:1 - The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.

    Hebrews 3:4 - For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything.

    Psalms 139:13,14 - And my soul knows it very well!?

    In Genesis we see the bible claims we were created by God!

    The Bible! - from scripture we find the prophecies and foreknowledge not found anywhere else. We see the prophecies fulfilled in the bible and some yet to be fulfilled. Ultimately the historical reality of Christ and His resurrection, along with the biblical record demands the existence of God.

    What makes God real to you?!

    Anthropological argument - The universal moral and religious nature of man. Man not only has a sense of morality (he possesses a conscience and a concept of right or wrong) he is also incurably religious (a "god/God consciousness"). How do we explain this? Where does it come from?

  • This argument (among others) comes from the greatest reasoning of the human mind in the search for truth. (Eccl. 3:11)
  • The very history of mankind shows we are a worshipping creature. Literally every nation on earth worships something. They may not worship the Lord God. Even so, they worship something. Should a man reject God as the supreme being of the universe, generally speaking he still has a need to look outside himself to something greater and worship. This need to worship is often debated. Is this tendency to worship explained by an evolved awareness or historical traditions or by something yet unproven. The very nature of man to look outside himself for the answers of "why am I here?" points to a superior being. (1 Peter 3:15)

    2. God can be known by man!

    Do we understand what a blessing it is that we can know God?

    Phil 3:7-11 - Do we understand like Paul did how valuable it is to know God?

    We can know God only if He has chosen to reveal himself to us.

    In what way has God chosen to reveal Himself?

    Do we understand we must accept whatever means or medium He has chosen to reveal Himself to us. We must accept what and how much He has revealed to us about Himself and His nature.

    Ultimately through Jesus Christ!

    Hebrews 1:1-3 - God has spoken to us through His Son. (John 1:1-18)

    Also through His Word!

    2 Tim 3:16,17 - All Scripture is inspired by God! (2 Peter 1:20,21)

    We come to know God through - His Word!(Jesus)

    2 Peter 1:3 - We have been given everything we need to live a Godly life. James 4:8 - Draw near to God and He will draw near to you!


  • John 5:13-15 - If we ask according to His will(qualifier), He hears us!
  • 1 John 5:19-20

    John 17:3 - Knowing God is eternal life!

  • 1 John 2:3-6 - When we start living our lives as Jesus would - this is when we know God. We start to apply the knowledge of God in our lives!
  • 3. God's perfections and power set Him far above man!

    Why is God worthy of worship? Why should we respect God? Why should we fear God?

    He is our creator!

    1. Creator - He has caused all things to come into existence!

    Genesis 1:27 - God created man in His own image

    Col 1:15,16 - Jesus had a hand in creation

    His very nature!

    1. Omnipresent - present in all places at the same time! Psalms 139:7- 12 - Wherever we go God is there! - Blessing? We cannot hid from God! - Blessing?

    2. Omniscient - has infinite knowledge - knows all things!

    Psalms 139:17-18 - His thoughts out number the grains of sand

    Psalms 147:4,5 - His understanding has no limit

    Hebrews 4:13 - Everything is known to God

    1 John 3:18-20 - He is greater then our hearts, He knows everything

    3. Omnipotent - unlimited power or authority; all powerful!

    Luke 18:27 - Nothing is impossible with God, including saving us

    Jer 32:17, 27 - Nothing is too hard for God

    4. Sovereignty - above or superior to all others!

    Matt 28:18-20 - (Great commission) All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth.

    God is everywhere at the same time, knows everything, with unlimited power! What ultimately shows God is superior and more powerful than anything else we know? The resurrection of Jesus Eph 1:15-23 - God's power was shown in the resurrection

    5. Unchangeable - He will never fail us or leave us!

    James 1:17 - God does not change like shifting shadows

    Hebrews 6:17,18 - His purpose does not change

    Heb 13:8 - "Jesus is the same yesterday and today and forever."

    His moral character!

    1. Perfect - complete in all respects, flawless! Deut. 32:3,4 - His works are perfect, He does no wrong

    Psalms 18:30 - the Word of the Lord is flawless

    1 John 1:5 - God is light, there is no darkness in Him

    2. Love - a deep and tender feeling of affection!

    1 John 4:7-19(8,16-21) - God is love! Definition?

    John 3:16 - For God so loved......

    3. Holy - Blameless - set apart above all others!

    1 Peter 1:15,16 - We are to be holy as God is Holy

    4. Goodness - He is the best! Morally excellent!

    Psalms 31:19 - God's goodness is great

    Acts 14:17 - God's kindness is shown in our life


    How He deals with mankind!

    1. In grace - Ultimate kindness and compassion!

    Ephesians 1:7,8 - His grace is lavished(abound) - (more than enough, extremely generous) upon us

    Ephesians 4:7 - His grace is sufficient for us

    2. With mercy - He refrains from punishing - kindness!

    1 Peter 1:3-5 - In His mercy He has given us hope

    3. With patience - long-suffering, enduring pain or trouble!

    Romans 2:4 - We should not take lightly God's patience

    2 Peter 3:9, 14 &15 - He is patient wanting everyone to repent

    4. In love - shown in Christ!

    Titus 3:4-7 - He saved us because of His love

    Romans 5:8 - His love is demonstrated in Christ's sacrifice

    We must realize how Good and Great God is and how He is worthy of our worship! The very nature of God and what He has done for us deems Him worthy of worship, of our respect, of our love, of our honor, of our adoration, of our affection, of our allegiance, and of our devotion.

    What or how we think (or don't think) about God will determine the way we worship.

    We must consider Him to be above any other thing we know in order for us to give Him the proper amount of respect due Him.

    Our worship to God will never be any greater than our concept of Him.

    If we consider Him to be "not that big of a deal"! - Our worship will be "not that big of a deal"! If we consider Him not to be the Almighty, Superior, Creator that He is - our worship to Him will reflect that. If my worship is lacking, maybe my concept of Him needs some improvement. We do that through prayer and spending more time in His Word!

    4. You need Him in your life!

    He has given us physical life

    Genesis 2:7 - Breathed into man the breath of life, and man became a living soul.

  • Acts 17:25 - (Paul in the Areopagus in Athens) God is not served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all life and breath and all things.
  • We most of all need Him Spiritually

    1. I must know (not just think) I am a sinner! (Romans 3:23)

    2. I must realize that due to my actions I should be lost forever and with never a chance to make my life right with God or to go to heaven.

    3. I must realize the penalty for my actions is spiritual death forever.

    4. I must realize because of God's love, mercy and grace, He sent his Son Jesus Christ to die for me (in my place) even though it was me who deserved to die.

    5. I must realize that through Christ's sinless life He was the perfect sacrifice for my sin.

    6. I must think of myself as the worst sinner of all and that Christ died for me personally. I must feel I am the one who crucified Him.

    7. I must see that the resurrection of Jesus Christ and His victory over death is then what allows me to reunite myself with God.

    8. I must see through this scheme of redemption that I truly NEED God in my life.


    Ephesians 2:1-10 - What He has done for us we could never do - we really need Him!

    This is why we need Him in our life and why we should thank Him for what He has done for us through our thankful worship.

    Do you need Him in your life? Look at what He has done for us!

    2 Peter 1:3,4 - He has given us His precious and magnificent promises! Through these promises we become godly and escape the world.

    1 John 4:13 - God has given us of His Spirit!

    Ephesians 5:1,2 - Given us Christ as an offering and sacrifice to God.

    Eph 1:3 - He has blessed us with every spiritual blessing.

    Rom 6:22, 23; 1 John 5:11-13 - He has given us eternal life through Christ.

    1 Timothy 6:17 - He gives us everything we need to enjoy in this life.

    1 Corinthians 15:55-58 - God gives us victory over death - the sting of death is sin.

    If I didn't think I needed Him in my life, why would I seek after Him to worship Him?

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    Worship of the Patriarch's

    (1/16/2002 & 1/20/2002)


    "Cain & Abel"


     Genesis 4:1-8


    First clear mention of an offering to the Lord (worship)!

    Offering: To hold out before (present) God for acceptance or refusal!

  • minchah [585a]; a gift, tribute, offering :- gift(5), gifts(2), meal offering(7), meal offerings(1), offering(151), offering*(1), offerings(14), present(12), sacrifice(3), tribute(14).

  •                     Fruits of the ground

  • peri [826b]; from Hebrew 6509 (parah); fruit :- earnings*(1), foliage(1), fruit(84), fruitful(2), fruits*(1), fruits(2), offspring(11), price(m)(1), produce(12), product(1), results(2), reward(1).

  • parah [826a]; a primitive root; to bear fruit, be fruitful :- bear fruit(2), bearing fruit(1), become fruitful(1), flourishes(1), fruitful(18), fruitful tree(1), increased(1), made fruitful(1), make fruitful(4).

  • Firstling: Firstborn / Flock / Fat portions


  • bekor [114a]; from Hebrew 1069 (bakar); first-born :- first-born(117), firstlings(1), most(m)(1), oldest(3).bakar [114a]; a primitive root; to bear new fruit, to constitute as first-born :- bear(1), first-born(2), giving birth to a first child(1), make(1).

  • tson [838a]; small cattle, sheep and goats, flock :- flock(102), flocks(58), lambs(m)(1), lambs*(2), sheep(99), Sheep(3), sheepfolds*(3), sheepshearers*(1).

  • cheleb [316d]; fat :- best(5), fat (m)(74), fat portions(7), fatness(1), finest*(1), finest(2), marrow(m)(1), unfeeling(m)(1).

  • Why was Cain's sacrifice not acceptable and Abel's was acceptable?


    Attitude = quality and quantity of our offering (worship)!


    Cain's attitude or character reflected itself in his offering - it wasn't his best. Cain brought the fruit of the ground, but not the first-fruits. Cain's offered his offering to simply keep on good terms with God. And that was all. He wasn't truly thankful for what God had done for him. Cain offered to satisfy his conscience not because he was truly thankful. All of this was reflected in his offering!


    Abel's attitude or character reflected itself in his offering - it was the best he could bring. (Not only did Abel bring of the firstborn, but the fattest of the firstborn). Abel's heart felt thanks came from deep within himself and it reflected itself in his offering to the Lord. Abel's state of mind toward God was such that he wanted to bring the best he could to God. (1 Peter 2:5)


    God has given His best to us? (Eph 2:1-10; Rom 5:1-11) Why shouldn't we give our best to Him! (Heb 13:15)


    This also shows when we do not give our best God is not pleased!! The only person who knows what my best is, is God and me. We cannot hid what our best is from God. (Hebrews 4:12,13)

    Abel shows us when we are truly devoted to God

    as worshippers we will offer the very best we

    have to offer, and whatever our best is, in that God will be pleased. (Hebrews 11:4)

    How should we worship God? Hebrews 8:1-6; 10:22

    Noah - Genesis 8:20-22

    The altar - a place for the offering of slain animals!


    mizbeach [258a]; from Hebrew 2076 (zabach); an altar :- altar(349), altars(52).

  • zabach [256d]; a primitive root; to slaughter for sacrifice :- made sacrifices(1), offer(18), offered(12), offering(3), offers(2), sacrifice(53), sacrificed(33), sacrifices(6), sacrificing(9), slaughter(3), slaughtered(3).

  •                     Burnt Offering

  • olah or olah [750b]; from Hebrew 5927 (alah); whole burnt offering :- burnt offering(207), burnt offerings(80).

  •                               olah [751a]; from Hebrew 5927 (alah); ascent, stairway :-                               stairway(m)(2).


    Altars - a simple elevation made of earth, rough stones, or turf. (V. 20)


    Altars in the tabernacle/temple were made of stone or wood to withstand constant use. (Exodus 27:1)


    Altar (Cairn (kern)) - Heap of small stones with a large, flat stone placed on top. (Exodus 24:4)


    -Animals which were destined to be the best of man's food!

  • Noah offered the best he had to offer -
  • Noah's way of saying thanks for God's protection.

    Noah didn't offer out of his surplus or out of convenience he took every clean animal and every clean bird and offered it to the Lord! (v. 20)


    Pleasing aroma(NIV); smelled a sweet savor(KJ); soothing(comforting) aroma(NKJ)(NAS)


    It comforted the Lord; it was pleasant or pleasing to Him. (v.21)


    If this burnt offering; this animal flesh burning; smelled so bad how could it be soothing to the Lord?


    God graciously accepts the feelings (love, respect, awe, reverence, affection) of the offerer which rose to him in the odor of the sacrificial flame. In the sacrificial flame the essence of the animal was resolved into vapor; so that when man presented a sacrifice in his own stead, his inmost being, his spirit, and his heart ascended to God in the vapor, and the sacrifice brought the feeling of his heart before God. This feeling of gratitude for gracious protection, and of desire for further communications of grace, was well-pleasing to God. (Psalms 40:6-8)


    Would you consider this act of burnt offering, worship to God?


    Noah used the burnt offering, to thank the Lord for gracious protection, and pray for mercy in times to come. (Heb 4:16)

  • Reason for altars - the hearts of the pious (devoted followers) turns toward heaven, and their offerings and prayers needed to ascend on high if they were to reach the throne of God. To give this direction to their offerings, heights or elevated places were erected, from which they ascended towards heaven in fire. From this the offerings received the name "ascending" not so much because the sacrificial animals ascended or were raised upon the altar, as because they rose from the altar to heaven.

  • God's reaction to Noah's worship?

    Do you believe God hears your worship and that he reacts to your worship (- a soothing aroma)? It pleases Him and comforts Him? Do we understand when we worship as true worshippers (like Jesus talked about in gospel of John - in spirit and truth & like Paul said in Rom 12:1 - living sacrifice), God is giving us a promise of eternal life. This is an even bigger promise than He gave Noah?


    ---God promised He would not curse the ground, even though the tendency of man's heart is evil form childhood. God realizes we need Him to survive, even though we are evil and unworthy, God will endure and be patient with our weaknesses.-- (Matt 26:41; Heb 4:15; 2 Peter 3:9, 1Tim 2:3,4)

    How important was this act of burnt offering to the Lord?

    • Through this act the desire for future generations of man was expressed in that man wanted to remain in fellowship with God and to secure God's favor.

    • It resulted in the promise that God would never again curse the ground, that God would never again destroy the earth with water, and that as long as we are all here God will continue to bring us the seasons (everything necessary for the continuance of mankind)

    Noah's attitude = quality and quantity of his offering (worship)


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    Worship of the Patriarch's (Part 2)

    (1/23/2002 & 1/27/2002)




    Genesis 12:1-9


    Abraham "Called on the name of the Lord"



  • (1.) To cry for help, hence to pray (Genesis 4:26). Thus men are said to "call upon the name of the Lord" (Acts 2:21; Acts 7:59; Acts 9:14; Romans 10:12; 1 Cor. 1:2).

  • Romans 10:13

    for "Whoever will CALL UPON THE NAME OF THE Lord WILL BE SAVED."

    1 Cor. 1:2

  • to the church of God which is at Corinth, to those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, saints by calling, with all who in every place call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours:


    To call upon the name of the Lord!

    1. Used for a solemn (serious) calling of the name of God.

      • When applied to man, it denotes invocation( a calling on God for a blessing, help, inspiration, support, etc.) to God, calling out or proclaiming His name.

  • Declaring a need for God. Pleading to God for His presence. A renewed devotion to God through prayer.

  • The name of God signifies in general "the whole nature of God, by which He attests His personal presence in the relation into which He has entered with man, the divine self-manifestation, or the whole of that revealed side of the divine nature, which is turned toward man". We have here an account of the commencement of that worship of God which consists in prayer, praise, and thanksgiving, or in the acknowledgment and celebration of the mercy and help of God. (Gen 13:3,4)


    The offering of Isaac on the altar as a burnt offering - Genesis 22


    1. Abraham waited for the promised seed (Gal 3:6; Gen 15:6; Acts 3:25)

    2. Finally after much frustration, Abraham has a son by his wife Sarah.

    3. And now God asked him to sacrifice the heir of the promise as a burnt offering. And yet Isaac was the object of the great promise and it was thorough him that all of us would be blessed. In addition, as a father, Isaac was the object of all Abraham's desires, the hope of his life, the joy of his old age.


    What must his human reasoning be telling him?

  • This took three days for him to reason out in his mind! This took three days for him to feel the ramification of what was about to happen. Imagine the conflict in his mind as he has three days to think about killing his own son (The trip would take about 20 1/2 hours - on foot)

  • Abraham did not question the truth of God's Word! He did not question God!


    Abraham stood firm in his Faith (Hebrews 11:17-19) even though he knew God could raise him from the dead, it took a tremendous amount of faith (trusting God enough to do whatever He says) By this Abraham's faith would be perfected into unconditional trust in God into the assurance that God could even raise him from the dead.


    Abraham's obedience of faith to God extended even to slaying his own son. What was God looking for in this test of Abraham's faith? Did God want Isaac sacrificed? The issue shows that God did not desire the sacrifice of Isaac by slaying and burning him upon the altar, but rather Abraham's complete surrender, and a willingness to offer him up to God even by death.


    Nevertheless the divine command was given in such a way, that Abraham could not understand it in any other way than as requiring an outward burnt-offering, because there was no other way in which Abraham could accomplish the complete surrender of Isaac, than by an actual preparation for really offering the desired sacrifice. Even though at the time God had commanded him to offer up Isaac, Abraham had made up his mind (he had already sacrificed Isaac), he still had to go through the physical act to truly test his faith? (James 2:20-24)


    (Needy for the Lord?) Are we willing to give up the very thing we love the most to worship! Abraham was willing to give up his son to worship God? Do you have that need for God which is so strong nothing will stop you from worshipping him? "Not father, mother, son or daughter?"(Matt 10:34-39)


    The most effective way of testing our faith is by requiring us to give up something we truly love. (Gal 2:20)


    This act of worship was the ultimate in being that living sacrifice. Abraham was willing to give up everything for the Lord! He showed devotion by doing what was difficult! He showed love and respect by doing what God asked of him no matter what, even if it meant sacrificing his son. Abraham showed humility and servitude in submitting to God's will. (Rom 4:18-21)


    Does God require human sacrifices in worship?

    Rom 12:1 - **Read, study and meditate on this verse!**


    What this proves is that God does not demand a literal human sacrifice from his worshippers, but the spiritual sacrifice of an unconditional denial of self. What I want and desire means nothing, what matters is our sacrifice to God - our worship to him of our very lives.


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    Review Questions #2




    Questions covering topics: Patriarchs - "Cain & Abel", Noah & Abraham

    1. What does offering mean? When would God accept our offering (worship)? When would God refuse our offering (worship)? (Heb 12:28,29; 1 Peter 2:5; Gen 4:1-8)





    2. Why was Cain's offering refused? Why was Abel's offering accepted? What might we learn from this in our own worship to God? (Gen 4:1-8; Heb 11:4)





    3. Define attitude? What effect will our attitude have on our worship to God? (Phil 4:8; 3:15,16; Gal 6:3; Rom 12:3; Heb 4:12,13)





    4. When Noah offered to God burnt offerings on the altar what did this smell like to God? Explain? (Gen 8:20-22)




    5. How did God react to Noah's offering (worship)? What did God promise as a result of Noah's act of worship? (Gen 8:20-22; Heb 11:7)




    6. What does it mean to "call on the name of the Lord?" List some passages that support your answer.




    7. Why did God ask Abraham to sacrifice Isaac? Was this an act of worship? (Gen 22)



    8. On the back of this paper list the lessons we have learned about worship from Abraham. How can you apply these lessons to your worship today?


    back to contents

    The Tabernacle - objects in worship

    (1/30/2002 & 2/3/2002)



    Why? - Exodus 25:8 - that I may dwell among them!


    Laver - It was a basin used by the priests to wash their hands and their feet before entering the tent of meeting or before offering sacrifices to God at the burnt offering altar.(Exodus 30:17-21) This laver was made from the bronze mirrors of the serving women.(Exodus 38:8)


    Altar of burnt offering - The place were animal sacrifices to God were killed and burned.(Exodus 29:38-46) The utensils were - pans, shovels, basins, forks and firepans.(Exodus 27:3) The pans and shovels were used to clean the ashes out of the altar. The basins were used to receive the blood to be sprinkled on the altar. The forks were used to handle large pieces of flesh. The firepans were used to carry the fire from the altar of burnt offering to the altar of incense and other places.


    Lampstand - The lampstand was lit in the evening and extinguished, trimmed, and filled in the morning.(Exodus 30:7,8) The lamps were supplied with olive oil(Exodus 27:20,21) and a wick. The utensils (wick- trimmers and trays) were used to care for the lamp.(Exodus 25:38) The wick-trimmer was used to pull up the wick and to hold the coal while blowing it to light the lamp. The trays were used for bringing the live coals from the altar of burnt offering to be used to light the lamp.


    Altar of Incense - The altar of incense was used to burn incense both in the morning and in the evening.(Exodus 30:7,8) No burnt or meat offerings were to be offered on it and drink offerings were not to be poured on it.(Exodus 30:9) No strange(unauthorized) incense was to be offered on it.(Exodus 30:9)


    Table - The table was used to hold the bread.(Exodus 25:30) The bread was made of fine wheat flour(unleavened), baked in twelve loaves(cakes) and each containing one fifth of an ephah of flour. The utensils for the table - dishes for the bread, bowls for incense, jugs for making libations(drink offerings), and cups for drinking.


    Ark - Also called the "ark of the covenant"(Numbers 10:33) or "ark of the testimony"(Exodus 25:22). Between the cherubim was the cloud in which God appeared above the mercy seat.(Exodus25:22; Lev 16:2) Since God's presence was on the ark no unclean or sinful man could approach it. Even the high priest, if he went before it at his own pleasure, or without the blood of a sacrifice, would expose himself to certain death.



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    The Life of a Priest!

    (1/30/2002 & 2/3/2002)


    Their attire for service


    The priest wore special garments - tunics(gown), sash(a scarf worn around the shoulder or waist), robe(long outer garment), ephod(embroidered outer vest), breastplate(embroidered cloth), turban, the holy crown. They were dressed in special garments during the times at the tabernacle during service. They were God's chosen ones!(Exodus 28,29) They were expected to keep God's laws strictly! (Lev. 22:9)





    In the morning they would put on their holy garments and get ready for a day of service to the Lord. They would offer a lamb as a burnt offering on the altar in the morning to sanctify the tabernacle. A drink offering was also poured out on this lamb along with a grain offering. After the offering the lampstand's wicks were trimmed and topped off with oil. The altar of incense was then lit. The priest would then take care of the sacrifices of the people. In the evening another lamb was offered as a burnt offering, with a grain offering and drink offering. The lampstand was lit and the altar of incense was lit again as well.(Numbers 28:3-8)(Exodus 30:7,8)



    The Sabbath - weekly offering


    On the day of the Sabbath - In addition to the daily sacrifices, two lambs were offered as a burnt offering along with a grain and drink offering. Yet no work was to be performed on this day. It was to be a holy day. The bread on the table was to be renewed along with the incense on the table.(Numbers 28:9,10)(Lev 24:8)



    The New Moon - monthly offering


    On the beginning of month - In addition to daily sacrifices, two bulls, one ram and seven lambs for burnt offerings. Grain offerings and drink offerings were offered with the burnt offerings. One goat was offered as a sin offering.(Numbers 28:11-15)



    The Day of Atonement - yearly offering

    Considered a priests most important function


    The yearly atonement of the priest(October) - A bull was offered as a sin offering and a ram as a burnt offering to make atonement for the priest himself. He was to take some of the coals from the altar, incense, and blood from the offerings into the Holy of Holies. The incense was to be put on the fire in the presence of the Lord. The cloud of incense was then to cover the mercy seat. The blood of the bull was then sprinkled against the front of (or on the ground in front of?) the mercy seat and seven times on top of (or on the ground in front of and before?) the mercy seat.(Lev 16:1-14)


    The yearly atonement of the people(October) - Two goats were offered as a sin offering and one ram for a burnt offering. One goat was offered as a sin offering to atone the tabernacle itself for the people. The blood from the goat was sprinkled against the front of (or on the ground in front of?) the mercy seat and seven times on top of (or on the ground in front of and before?) the mercy seat. The blood from the goat and the ram was also used to atone the altar of burnt offering by putting blood on its horns. The blood was also sprinkled on the altar seven times to cleanse it and sanctify it from the uncleanness of the children of Israel. The other goat called the "scape goat" was not to be killed but was to be kept alive. The priest would lay both hands on the head of the goat and confess all the iniquities, transgressions and sins, putting them on the head of the "scape goat". The goat was then lead to the wilderness to bear the iniquities of the people. In addition one bull, one ram, seven lambs all with grain offerings. All of this was done to cleanse the people from their sins.(Lev 16:6-34)(Numbers 29:7-11)



    The Feast of Trumpets - yearly offering


    On the seventh month(October) - In addition to the daily and new moon sacrifices. It was a day for them to sound the trumpets from morning till evening. (celebration!) They were to offer one bull, one ram and seven lambs all with grain and drink offerings. And one goat for the sin offering.(Numbers 29:1-6)



    The Feast of Unleavened Bread / Passover - yearly offering


    On the fourteenth day of the first month(April) - In addition to the daily sacrifices they offered one goat for the sin offering. They offered two bulls, one ram, and seven lambs for the burnt offering along with grain offerings. They were to do all of this for seven days. On the second day of the feast the first sheaf of the new harvest was offered by waving, not burning. With this a lamb was offered for a burnt offering with a grain and drink offering.(Numbers 28:16-25)



    Pentacost / The Feast of Weeks - yearly offering

    Day of Firstfruits or Feast of Harvest


    On the day of firstfruits(June) - In addition to the daily offerings they were to offer one goat for a sin offering and two bulls, one ram, and seven lambs for the burnt offering each of which had a grain offering and drink offerings. After this the firstfruits bread was offered along with seven lambs, one bull and two rams for burnt offerings with the prescribed grain and drink offerings. A goat was offered for a sin offering and two more lambs for a peace offering.(Num 28:27-31)(Lev 23:16-20)


    The Feast of Tabernacles - yearly offering

    (Booths or Ingathering)


    On the fifteenth day of the seventh month(October) - In addition to the daily offerings they were to offer the following as burnt offerings(bulls, rams & goats) and sin offering(goat)


    Day 1 13 bulls 2 rams 14 lambs 1 goat

    Day 2 12 bulls 2 rams 14 lambs 1 goat

    Day 3 11 bulls 2 rams 14 lambs 1 goat

    Day 4 10 bulls 2 rams 14 lambs 1 goat

    Day 5 9 bulls 2 rams 14 lambs 1 goat

    Day 6 8 bulls 2 rams 14 lambs 1 goat

    Day 7 7 bulls 2 rams 14 lambs 1 goat

    Day 8 1 bull 1 ram 7 lambs 1 goat


    The grain offering and drink offerings were offered with the bulls, rams and lambs.(Numbers 29:12-40)

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    The Offerings to the Lord at the Tabernacle

    (2/6/2002 & 2/10/2002)



    The burnt offering (voluntary and required) - A burnt offering could be brought by freewill, but it was often given by commandment. It could be a ram, lamb, goat, turtledove or pigeon. (The ram and lamb were to be males without blemish) The one who brought the animal had to lay their hand on the animal and then kill it near the altar and before the Lord. The priest would then take the blood and sprinkle it around the altar. The sacrifice was then burned on the altar, being completely consumed. This was a sweet aroma to the Lord. The burnt offering often immediately followed a sin or trespass offering. It was done to make atonement (general atonement - if brought voluntarily you were admitting that you generally are a sinner before God.) for the person who brought it before the Lord to be sacrificed.(Lev 1)(Lev 6:8-13)



     to stay in God's favor

    showed respect for God

    a self surrender to God for sanctification

    acknowledging and recognizing yourself as a sinner



    The grain offering (meat offering) (voluntary and required) - A grain offering could be brought by freewill, however it was usually in conjunction with a burnt offering which was often given by commandment. It was made of fine flour, oil, and frankincense. Or unleavened cakes of fine flour mixed with oil baked in an oven or pan. Unleavened wafers anointed with oil could also be used. They were to take a portion of it and give it to the priest to be burned on the altar as a memorial - a sweet aroma to the Lord. The rest of the grain offering was to be given to the priests to be eaten - only in the court of the tabernacle. (However, the grain offerings given to the Lord by the Priests were to be totally consumed) The grain offerings were not to have leaven. They could not burn leaven or honey in an offering to the Lord. Firstfruits could be offered to the Lord, but they were not to be burned on the altar. They were probably eaten by the priests. Every grain offering was to be seasoned with salt.(Lev 2)



    to stay in Gods' favor

    to honor God



    The peace offering (saving or fellowship) (voluntary and required) - This offering involved thanksgiving(or praise), vows(or votive), and freewill. The peace offering could be a ram, lamb, or goat, but not a turtledove or pigeon. This offering was performed in much the same way as the burnt offering. The difference being a portion of the animal was not totally consumed on the altar, but rather kept as food for the priest. This offering served as a sacrificial meal for both the offerer and the priest.(Lev 3)


    to express gratitude, obligation to God

    to express fellowship with God

    to maintain communion with God



    The sin offering (required, must have committed sin) - This offering was used when a person sinned unintentionally (example, uncleanliness) against a commandment of the Lord, or when the anointed priest sinned. The one who sinned brought a bull near the altar. The sinner then had to lay their hand on the head of the bull and then kill it before the Lord. The Priest would then take some of the blood in a basin and dip his finger in it. He would then sprinkle some of the blood seven times in front of the veil of the sanctuary. Also he would put some of the blood on the horns of the altar of incense inside the tabernacle. He was then to pour the remaining blood at the base of the altar of burnt offering. The fat was removed from the animal and burned on the altar. The remaining parts of the animal were carried out to the place were they dumped the ashes from the altar of burnt offering. It was then to be burned on wood there and totally consumed.(Lev 4)



    to make atonement for the sinner

    Note: An innocent life had to be offered in place of the sinner (or sin). The offerer had to see himself laying on the altar as the innocent life of the animal took the offerer's place. In addition, unlike the blood of Christ, there were some sins that the blood of bulls and goats could not atone for in the old law. For example; premeditated murder, kidnapping, idol worship, adultery, blasphemy, etc.. could not be forgiven and required the death penalty of stoning.)



    The trespass (or guilt) offering (required, must have committed sin) - This offering was used when a person did not keep his word, touched anything unclean, was careless in what he said. They could use a lamb or goat(female?) It was treated much in the same way as the burnt offering. If they could not bring a lamb or goat they could bring two turtledoves or two pigeons. One of the birds was used like a sin offering the other like a burnt offering. If they could not bring birds then they could bring one-tenth of an ephah(ephah = 32 quarts so 1/10 =3/4 gallon) of fine flour. It was then offered like a grain offering but considered a sin offering.

    If one sinned in regards to the holy things of the Lord they were to offer a ram as their trespass offering.

    If one sinned by lying to or stealing from a neighbor they were to correct that by going to their neighbor and also giving them 1/5 more. Then he was to offer a ram as their trespass offering.(Lev 5) Note: Ditto note on sin offering.



    to atone for sins against God and others

    to atone for specific sins



    The drink offering (voluntary and required) - This offering was used in conjunction with a blood sacrifice. It was poured out upon the existing offering.(Numbers 28:1-10)



    to stay in God's favor



    The Israelites saw these offerings more as gifts to God than offerings. They gave the very best(firstborn, firstfruits, etc..) they had to God in the offering. For the average person these offerings was there worship. The sacrifices and offerings were the only means by which Israel was to seek and sustain communion with God. Generally the purposes of all the sacrifices and offerings was to stay in communion with God. (See Ephesians 5:1,2)


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    The feasts of the Lord

    (2/6/2002 & 2/10/2002)


    Exodus 23:14-17

    To promote the spiritual interests of the people!


    The Weekly Sabbath


    A holy day. This was the day of rest for God's people. It was celebrated through doing no work and a holy assembly. The idea of doing no work and coming together to worship was to give man an opportunity to repeatedly renew his mind and to strengthen his devotion to God. It caused a man to stop and think about his spiritual condition before God.(Exodus 20:11; 31:12-17)(Lev 23:3)



    The Feast of Trumpets (Rosh Hashanah)

    Feast of New Moon

    Beginning of civil year


    This was considered a "new year's day." A true celebration to God for what He had done for His people. They were not to work. They were to hold a sacred assembly. They were to remember what God had done for them in the past year.(Lev 23:23-25)



    The Sabbatic Year


    Every seven years the people were to rest the land from tilling and cultivating, they were not to plant anything. Anything that was yielded from natural harvest was to be given away to the poor or their own households. They were to remember the Lord had given them the land. This was used for true spiritual rest and renewal. Debts were forgiven during this year of rest.(Exodus 23:10)(Lev 25:2-7)



    The Jubilee


    This occurred every 50 years. There was to be rest for the soil - no planting, growing, or harvesting. Property which had been sold because of poverty was to go back to it's original owners. If a Israelite had sold himself to another person because of poverty, he was to go free in the year of jubilee.(Lev 25:8-16, 23-55)



    The New Moon


    This was a monthly festival designed to remember the Lord on a monthly basis.(Numbers 10:10)(28:11)



    The Passover


    The Passover was instituted in memory of how the Lord "passed over" the houses of the Israelites in Egypt and spared the firstborn when He struck down the Egyptians firstborn. The Lord did not kill the firstborn of the houses with the blood of the lamb on the door posts. It lasted one day.(Exodus 12)



    The Feast of Unleavened Bread


    This feast immediately followed the Passover. It commemorated the deliverance of the people of God from Egypt and established Israel as a nation under God's redemptive act. It lasted seven days. (Lev 23:4-8)



    The Feast of Pentecost


    This feast was fifty days after the feast of Passover. This feast lasted a single day and marked the completion of the wheat harvest. This was considered the anniversary of the giving of the Law on Mt. Sinai. They were also to remember at one time they were slaves in Egypt until God saved them.(Lev 23:15-21)(Deut 16:9-12)



    The Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur)


    This was more an observance than a feast. The purpose of this observance was to atone for the sins of the people despite the regular sacrifices. This day was instituted for atoning all the sins and uncleanness which had remained unatoned for and uncleansed in the course of the year.(Lev 16)


    The Feast of Tabernacles

    Feast of Booths, Feast of Ingathering


    This feast began five days after the day of atonement. It lasted seven days. There were many burnt offerings associated with it. It marked the completion of the harvest and commemorated the wanderings in the wilderness. During this festival people lived in booths "tents" in Jerusalem to remind themselves of how their forefathers wandered and lived in booths. The whole feast was popular and joyous in nature.(Lev 23:33-43)


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    Review Questions #3

    (2/6/2002 & 2/20/2002)




    Questions covering topics: Tabernacle, Priesthood, Offerings & Festivals

    1. What does the word tabernacle mean? Why was the tabernacle built? When the tabernacle was first erected what "filled" the tabernacle? (Exodus 25:8; 29:45,46; Chapter 40)


    2. Who designed the tabernacle? List some of the materials that were used to build the tabernacle. Where did these materials come from? How were they to build the tabernacle? (Exodus 25:1-9,49; 26:30; Chapter 35 & 36:1-7; Compare the plans/pattern - Exodus Chapters 25-27, 30 - with what they built - Exodus Chapters 36-40)





    3. When was the tabernacle moved? Who moved it? How did they move it? (Exodus 40:34-38; Numbers 1:47-54; Chapters 3 & 4; 7:1-9; 8:5-26; 9:15-23; 10:11-13)


    4. Describe the objects of worship in the outer "Court of the Tabernacle" and their purpose. (Exodus 30:17-21; Chapter 38)



    5. What two rooms made up the sanctuary? Describe the objects of worship and their purpose in each room. (Exodus 25:10-40; 26:31-35; 30:1-10; Chapter 40)



    6. Who ministered at the tabernacle? How were they to minister? How were they not to minister? (Exodus Chapters 28, 29, 39:1-31; 40:12-15; Leviticus Chapters 8-10; 21&22)


    7. List the different types of offerings that were brought to the tabernacle. What was the purpose of each offering? (Leviticus Chapter 1-6)




    8. List the various festivals (feasts) of the Lord and the reasons for each. Describe in detail the steps involved in the "Day of Atonement". (Exodus 23:14-19; 31:12-17; 35:1,2; Leviticus Chapters 16, 23, 25; Numbers 9:1-14; Deuteronomy Chapter 16)

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    Idolatry is giving divine(godly) honors to any created thing.


    Idolatry can be the worship of inanimate objects, (stones, trees, rivers, etc) worship of animals, worship of nature - sun, moon, stars, air, fire, water, worship of heroes, worship of abstractions or mental qualities - justice, love, etc.


    Idolatry can be the worship of God with an image or symbol, the worship of other gods with an image or symbol, the worship of the image or symbol itself.

  • Consider how God views Idolatry: (Exodus 20:1-6; 20:22,23; 22:20; 24:1-7; 32:1-35; 34:10-17; 2 Kings 17:5-23; 23:26,27; Leviticus 18:21; 20:1-5; Deuteronomy 17:2-7; 13:2-10; Jeremiah 10:1-16; Romans 1:18-25)

  • Idol worship is:

    a lie (Amos 2:4; Rom 1:25)

    a stumbling block (Ezekial 14:3)

    an abomination (Deut 29:17; 32:16; 1 Kings 11:5; 2 Kings 23:13)

    a sin (Amos 8:14; 2 Chronicles 29:18; Ephesians 5:5)

    Acts 17:16-31 - Paul at Athens


    Galatians 5:20 - One of the deeds of the flesh - those things which simply satisfy fleshly desires and have no other value! Those who practice these things will not inherit the Kingdom of God.


    Ephesians 5:5 - an immoral, impure and covetous man is considered an idolater.


    1 Cor 10:14 - Flee from idolatry.


    1 Peter 4:3 - Idolatry is sin.


    Deut 6:5 - You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and strength. Anything less is idolatry! (2 Tim 3:1-5; Colossians 3:5)



    IDLE - having no value or significance, worthless, useless, vain, futile, pointless, inactive, disengaged, not inclined to work.


    (1 Cor 15:58; James 1:25; 2 Tim 3:16,17; Col 3:23; Col 1:10; Rom 12:11)


    Our worship should be active. We should be involved. If we are not, it is idle worship.

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