- Think for a moment about something that you love to smell.
- Have you ever considered that there is an aroma that pleases God?
- May my prayer be set before you like incense.
OT, a vital part of worship
Altar of incense
Exodus 30: 1 - 10 & 22 - 36
- The myrrh that was of high quality was called the "Myrrh of Freedom" because it was that which flowed freely of itself, or when cut that which flowed from the wounds.
- The Myrrh of Freedom comes from the cutting into the side of a rugged thorny tree
- His "cutting," has allowed the Myrrh of Freedom to flow to all who would be saved.
-Sweet cinnamon has no pleasant odor while it is green, but its sweet aroma comes after it has been cut down, dies and dries out.
-John 16:7 But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.
- The roots speak of the underground, unseen, secret and private life. They speak of that which provides nourishment to the plant or tree.
- He said He is the vine, the root, the source, and we are to simply be the branches.
- What we practice in private will ultimately manifest itself in the public place.
- Psalms 45:8 All thy garments [smell] of myrrh, and aloes, [and] cassia... This spice reminds us of the beauty and the glory of the One who died for us.
- God wants to use our walk as a fragrant spice in the life of others.
- The olives had to be crushed to give their precious fruit. Gethsemane literally means: Oil press, it was the name of an Olive yard at the foot of the Mount of Olives.
- When Jesus was crushed on Calvary, the most precious oil of all came forth, "Father forgive them..."
1. Incense was beaten and pounded before it was used.
- Psalm 51:17 says, “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and contrite heart, O God, you will not despise.”
- For our prayers to be as incense we must be poor in spirit knowing that our sinfulness has separated us from God
-Ask and it will be given to you
-Asking in Greek translation literally means to beg
-Begging is very different from asking
-Is out of desperation-there is no other choice.
-How serious and desperate we are when we pray can be measured by the way we asked.
2. Incense requires fire for it to be useful.
- Zec 13: 8-9 says, “ God has indeed purged away our sins and made all believers pure in His sight, only because we are covered with the righteousness of Christ. .”
- God will bring us through the fire and will refine us as silver is refined.
- Seek and you will find
- Seek – to go in search or quest of something of great value.
- When you seek something, you rearrange your priorities so that you can search for what you desire until you find it.
- What do we seek today?
- Seeking for worldly treasures can be the heart beat of so many people in the world today.
- Our world has so many flashy things that can get us busy without the thought for what our lives would be here after.
- Great men of the Bible, who walked with God, discovered that this world has nothing to offer us. And, so, they resolved to SEEK after things of great value.
3. Incense yields a sweet aroma, and our prayers are a sweet aroma to the Lord.
- In Revelation 8:4 we see that the smoke of incense rose with the prayers of the saints.
- This seems to signify that there is a sweet fragrance associated with our prayers.
- If we can bring pleasure to God by praying then it should cause us to drop to our knees with joy.
- The altar of incense stood outside the veil separating the Holy Place and Holy of Holies
- Aaron, the priest, was to burn fragrant incense every day while he went about his duties.
- God’s front door. The altar of incense, then, became God’s doorbell for Aaron
- Knock and the door will be opened to you
- The word “knock” means to stand at a door and repeatedly knock
- If you knock like this, your desire for entrance must be very great indeed.
- They imply praying in the face of difficulty and even resistance.
- The Greek word translated as "persistence" means "shameless,”
- Knocking once does not indicate perseverance, but "continued" knocking does.
Jesus taught us - we should always pray and not give up.