“I hate, (says God – I hate) I reject your festivals, nor do I delight in your solemn assemblies. Even though you offer up to Me burnt offerings and your grain offerings, I will not accept them; and I will not even look at the peace offerings of your fatlings. Take away from Me the noise of your songs; I will not even listen to the sound of your harps. But let justice roll down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.” – Amos 5:21-24
Wow. Did you read that verse? That’s pretty strong condemnation from the Lord! Obviously, this was a time when the children of Israel were engaging in all kinds of evil doings. They were worshiping idols, committing adultery, divorcing, and only giving God their leftovers. They had basically turned their hearts against God and His will for their lives.
And now, they wanted God’s help. The economy had gone south and their crops were failing. They couldn’t understand why God wasn’t coming through for them. “God, we’re worshiping with passion. We’re weeping on the altar. We’re pleading for Your mercy and forgiveness. We’re bringing You our offerings. What in the world is going on?”
Sound familiar? Do you ever find yourself asking the same question? “Hey, God, I’m going to church on Sunday, I’m singing Your praises, so why haven’t things turned around for me?” Never mind that I’m cheating on my income taxes. Or that I’m feasting on pornography. Or that I’m mistreating my children. Or that I never have time for You during the week.
I’ve got news for you: we cannot buy God’s favor with our offerings. We do not impress Him with an emotional, weeping, passionate worship, if our lifestyle doesn’t show a heart for God. He is far more concerned with our obedience than with our emotional worship. In fact, He won’t even ACCEPT our offerings or songs of worship unless our hearts are truly repentant and our lives are following Jesus.
So, I ask you…where is your heart?