An Offering You Can’t Refuse
August 26, 2013 1 Comment
Last week in our Theology of Worship class, we learned the value of worship in the creation story. Something that always confused me was why Cain’s offering was unacceptable yet Abel’s was acceptable. I had previously been taught that Cain brought a grain offering and Abel brought a blood offering and a proper offering was exemplified by God who performed a sacrifice on the first animal to cover Adam and Eve.
However, my course is teaching us that the proper offering doesn’t necessarily come through whether it’s an animal or grain sacrifice but rather through the attitude of the heart during the sacrifice. Hebrews 11:4 suggests that Abel’s sacrifice came through faith and Cain’s did not come by faith. This is further emphasized in 1 John 3:10-15 when John uses the example of Cain being ‘the evil one’. His murderous actions shows to prove that he had no relationship with God and that he was bringing a sacrifice out of duty rather than worship.
Furthermore Jude (v.11) continues to prove that Cain had a deteriorative heart. Jude compares the unrepentant Jews to Cain by saying they walked in his ways and abandoned themselves for the sake of gain to Balaam’s error. Balaam, a non-Israelite seer whom the Moabites hired to curse Israel as they traveled from Egypt to the promised land, believed he could curse what God had blessed; his later teaching led the Israelites to idolatry and immorality.
Cain’s error was his disregard for God as well as his pride resulting in godlessness, violence, greed, blasphemy, and ultimately divine judgment. His sacrifice was not accepted.
Worship is more about our heart than it is about raised hands, bowed knees, or loud singing. Gregory the Great said ‘It is obvious that it was not about the offerer who received approval because of the offering, but the offering because of the offerer.’
It’s time we make God an offering he can’t refuse. By this, we devote our heart to him and bring an offering that supports our heart felt worship. No more raising hands because of peer pressure. No more singing loudly because it’s your favorite song. No more dancing the Holy Spirit jig because David did it.
“Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth.” John 4:23-24