Leviticus 10

Talks for Growing Christians

The Judgment of God on Nadab and Abihu

Leviticus 10

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Lesson Number 9

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. Worship that is not biblical is unacceptable worship.
  2. Worship that is not biblical has serious consequences.

Practical Application

  1. Don’t detract from God’s glory.


  1. What happened to Nadab and Abihu in Leviticus 10?
  2. What was the strange fire that Nadab and Abihu put in their censors or firepans?
  3. As long as our worship is _______-________ and _______-________, there is considerable freedom in procedure.
  4. What other examples of unacceptable worship from the Bible were mentioned?
  5. What did Jesus mean when He said in John 4:24 that God must be worshipped in spirit and in truth?


  1. Nadab and Abihu offered strange fire before the Lord and their lives were taken in judgment by the fire of the Lord.
  2. It may have been fire of their own making and not from the coals of fire from the brazen altar as required under the Law. Or it may have been an incense mixture of their own making and not the prescribed incense. Or it may not have been offered at the proper time of day. Or maybe Nadab and Abihu when into the Holy of Holies, or maybe (verse 9) they were drunk when they were conducting the worship.
  3. As long as our worship is Christ-centered and Christ-focused, there is considerable freedom in procedure.
  4. Cain and King Uzziah
  5. “In spirit” means that acceptable worship is not dependent on the building or environment. It is our spirit’s response to God in thanksgiving and praise. “In truth” means that acceptable worship must be in line with what God has revealed to be true. Worship that does not acknowledge the truth about the Lord Jesus Christ, no matter how sincere, is false worship.


  1. Just as Old Testament believers had freedom within the restriction that God had set up, so believers today have freedom of worship within limits. How do these freedoms and responsibilities play out in your church’s corporate worship?
  2. Because Aaron and his remaining sons were priests, they had the responsibility to continue in their important roles. In these roles they were to convey the holiness of God in their lifestyle- especially when they were on the job officiating. Do we as believer priests convey the holiness of God in our lifestyle?


  1. Because Nadab and Abihu did not follow the way of worship as God had commanded, no matter how sincere they may have been, they dishonored God and did not treat God as holy. This detracted from the glory of God. Does your worship keep the focus on the glory of God?

Key Verses

  • “Then Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it, put incense on it, and offered profane fire before the Lord, which He had not commanded them.” Leviticus 10:1
  • “By those who come near Me I must be regarded as holy; and before all the people I must be glorified.” Leviticus 10:3

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