Just some stuff running over in my thoughts as I have been preparing for tomorrow... "To do righteousness and justice is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice." - Proverbs 21:3 (ESV)
You gotta wonder if the evangelical church has missed this. We spend so much time debating "worship," there is little left for figuring out how God wants his people to be for righteousness and justice, much less time to actually pursue righteousness and justice. And for the many who often raise the flag of righteousness, it is often more about opposing immorality in our culture than actively promoting something better.
Don't misunderstand me. 1. I believe we must discuss/debate theology, come to conclusions about worship, and in all of it submit ourselves to Scripture. It matters, and is in fact critical to the health of the church. But God is at best uninterested if we are not a people of righteousness and justice. Our external "sacrifices" are not enough in and of themselves.
2. I am pointing the finger at myself first. I am acknowledging that this is not only a problem in "evangelical churches," but in my own heart and life as well. I need to repent first.
3. Justice does include crying out against immorality, but I would hope that we would be recognized by what we are for, rather than by what we are against.
The sacrifices God has no heart for are outward sacrifice unaccompanied by faith and love. It doesn't matter how spotless the animal is, how technically proficient the priest is in offering the animal, if we are not ourselves first a sacrifice to God our worship is meaningless.
"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." - Psalm 51:16, 17 (ESV)