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When Worship Is Wrong. Proposition: If We Want to Worship God, Then We Must Do It His Way and On His Terms. Tortilla Worship.

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When Worship Is Wrong

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tortilla worship
Tortilla Worship

Friends, neighbors, and strangers stop by to look at it, or to pray in front of it. Mrs. Rubio, who also prays nightly in front of the tortilla, said, "I do not know why this has happened to me, but God has come into my life through this tortilla." The tortilla is reported to be in fair condition, though the face has faded.

In 1977, Mrs. Maria Rubio of Lake Arthur was rolling out tortillas when she saw the face of Jesus looking back at her from the flat tortilla. Her skillet had burned a representation of a slender, bearded face into the tortilla. She convinced a reluctant priest to bless the piece of bread...then she built a shrine around it. Mrs. Rubio quit her job to devote her full time to tending her tortilla shrine.

  • What makes this questionable?
  • The fact that it’s weird and wacky?
  • Or that it never came from God!
“Hear O Israel: The Lord our God is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength” (Deuteronomy 6:4-5)

This is a call to worship!

It was their #1 priority!

Look at the first commandment Worship

“I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. ‘You shall have no other gods before Me, you shall not make for yourself a carved image…” (Exodus 20:2-6)

worship at the tabernacle
Worship at the Tabernacle
  • All tribes faced the tabernacle.
  • 7 chapters (243 verses) are devoted to its detail.
  • Only 31 verses are devoted to creation.
  • No one came in and sat down to be entertained.
  • Purpose was Singular…
  • The purpose was to worship God!
  • Did they do it in a certain way?
  • Let’s read Exodus 30:34-37

Exodus 30:34-36 –These were the Lord’s instructions to Moses concerning the incense: “Gather sweet spices…and pure frankincense—weighing out the same amounts of each. 35…refine it to produce a pure and holy incense. 36Beat some of it very fine and put some of it in front of the Ark of the Covenant, where I will meet with you in the Tabernacle...


Exodus 30:37-38 –“Never make this incense for yourselves. It is reserved for the Lord, and you must treat it as holy. 38Those who make it for their own enjoyment will be cut off from the community.”

  • Did it sound like God wanted to be worshipped in a certain way?
  • Did it sound like God wanted worship to be holy?
  • Yes!
so when is worship wrong
So When Is Worship Wrong?
  • Some would say that it is unthinkable and distasteful to declare anyone’s worship wrong, even the tortilla!
  • “How dare you!”
  • But the Bible clearly shows God’s displeasure and His judgment against those who assumed they could worship their own way!
the golden calf
The Golden Calf
  • Exodus 32:4
  • Exodus 32:8
  • Exodus 32:19-20
  • Exodus 32:24
  • Exodus 32:35
nadab abihu
Nadab & Abihu
  • Leviticus 10:1-3
  • Profane fire?
  • It wasn’t a God-approved fire!
  • Did the Lord appreciate man’s ingenuity?
  • Obviously not!
king saul
King Saul
  • 1 Samuel 13:8-12
  • Even in compelling situations God does not approve of altered forms of worship.
  • 1 Samuel 13:8-12
wrong god
Wrong God
  • Idolatry – Golden Calf (Exodus 32)
  • Romans 1:21-23
  • Things = God
right god wrong form
Right God, Wrong Form
  • It could be any type of profane fire – a tortilla, a cross, a day other than the Lord’s day, etc.
right god right form wrong spirit
Right God, Right Form, Wrong Spirit
  • Of the three we have considered, this one should get our attention!
  • Do you worship with spirit?
  • John 4:24
john 4 24
“God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth.”

Proper object – One True God

Proper manner – God’s Way

Proper attitude – In Spirit

John 4:24