Offer Extravagant Worship


Aletha HinthornIn Scripture, two things--costliness and extravagance, marked worship that brought the presence of God. King Solomon offered 1,000 sacrifices to the Lord. (I Kings 3:4,5) That night God appeared to him and offered him whatever he wanted.

In another time of costly worship, the people brought so many sheep and oxen to be sacrificed that their numbers couldn't be recorded or counted. (Two chapters later in 2 Chronicles 7, their counted and recorded offerings totaled 22,000 oxen and 120,000 sheep. Too many to count would have been extravagant!)

What was God's response to such lavish adoration? The glory of the Lord so filled the house that the priests could not perform their services.

Mary of Bethany expressed her love for Jesus by pouring out a year's worth of ointment on Jesus. That was sacrificial giving that did not count the cost. Her profuse worship affected all those around her. The fragrance willed the house and Jesus promised that the memory of her lovely deed would last forever.

What would be a costly praise for us to offer? Perhaps it could be one referred to in Hebrews 13:15: "Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise." A sacrifice calls for death, and to praise continually often calls us to give up our own opinions of what God should do in our situation. When we honor Him by offering praise for all He allows, He considers it a costly praise. Such extravagant worship is precious to Him.

I praise You, Father, by accepting everything in this present moment as coming from Your good hand.

"My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed; I will sing and give praise" (Ps. 57:7). "I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth" (Ps. 34:1).