Pollution is offensive! Whether it be trash left on a scenic waterway or the air in Zabol, Iran which is the world’s most polluted city. Personally, I am offended when I see bags of trash or discarded furniture and appliances dumped along an otherwise beautiful country backroad.
We find occasions in God’s Word where he is offended. Whether it be an unauthorized or “strange fire” offered by Aaron’s sons in Leviticus 10:1-3, the disobedient anger when Moses strikes a rock with his staff in Num. 20:1-13, or the prideful arrogance of Uzziah offering incense in a place where he had no business in 2 Chronicles 16, it can’t be denied that God takes offense when His holiness is violated or disregarded.
We may focus on the act of offense that seems to be where the problem originates. We might even argue that if these guys had only honed their technique all would have been well. Yet when we look at other occasions in Scripture we find that the action results from the condition of the heart. In fact offending God’s holiness starts in the heart.
Jeremiah explained the root of offense well when he delivered this message from the Lord in Jer. 6:20,
“What use to me is frankincense that comes from Sheba, or sweet cane from a distant land? Your burnt offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices pleasing to me.”
Even what would have been considered a costly offering by most of Judah in that day, God said was unacceptable and displeased him. Why? The reason is explained in Jer. 3:10 where we discover that “Judah did not return to me with her whole heart, but in pretense, declares the Lord.” Even in the act of returning to God their hearts were deceptive and were not sincere!
David realizing the sinfulness of his heart said to the Lord in Ps. 51
“For you will not delight in sacrifice, or I would give it; you will not be pleased with a burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.
So who has offended the holiness of God. We all have a heart condition which is prone to offend God’s holiness. We all, like David, need to experience brokenness and sorrow for our actions that began deep in our hearts.
Beginning Sept. 10th the community known as Family Life Bible Church will dedicate eight Sundays to seeking God's face and asking Him to Revive Our Hearts. We are in desperate need to experience a fresh touch of God as we find forgiveness from our offenses against His holiness. Let's gather for this special time. Together!