Character is the Heart of Worship
Proverbs 15:8, "The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight."
I find it interesting that a person could be doing something right that is commanded in the Bible but the act itself be rejected. The first part of our verse records this reality: "The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD...." This person is one who is described as "wicked" (he is evil and guilty of sin). But notice his sacrifice is an abomination to the LORD. The word "abomination" means that which is disgusting. You see the problem isn't the sacrifice, the problem is the lack of character inwardly. An outward motion is simply that, an act that others see. But the Lord knows the condition of the heart. We do not have to come to God in perfection, but we do have to come to Him in honesty, humility, and repentance. A person living in wickedness needs to get his heart right with God and then his worship will be accepted by the Lord.
The latter portion of the verse is a motivation for each of us: "...but the prayer of the upright is his (the LORD'S) delight." The word "upright" speaks of one who is straight or level. Again, this isn't someone perfect (none of us are), but it is one who is honest, humble, and repentant before the Lord. The heart is seeking the Lord and responding to prayer becomes pleasurable and accepted by the LORD.
May our hearts be right as we come to worship and praise the LORD.
Your Friend and HIS,
Ponder & Meditate
1. Give an example of a time when you did something “religious” but that it was probably rejected by the Lord? Why do you sense this?
2. The word “abomination” has the sense of being disgusting. What have you done in your life that was probably disgusting to the Lord in your service?
3. We should make sure that we are right with God before we serve Him. Is there anything you need to confess and forsake in order to have your service acceptable?