TO THE PRAISE OF HIS GLORY(Pt. 1)

WORSHIP

A.W. Tozer warned in his day that the Church had lost the true art of worship. Although he has been gone for over a generation, I believe his concern could still be echoed. Today in many houses of worship we have come to substitute or mistake music style and entertainment as worship. While it can be argued that instruments and contemporary rhythms assist us in having a meaningful worship experience, it may not touch the heart of worship. Here are some thoughts to reflect upon as we examine the true essence of worship.

1-Worship is an act of love and obedience. The Shema: “Hear, O Israel…Thou shall love the LORD your God, with all your heart, soul, mind and strength”. God, Who has revealed Himself as a God of Love and Mercy, a God of faithfulness and forgiveness, wants a people who will both receive His love and return that love through our obedience.

Worship is an act of obedience to His Word; Love is a verb.

2-Worship acknowledges the worth of another. The One true and living God, Who is both Creator and Sustainer of every living thing, is worthy of all honor and glory. Because of this He is to be both acknowledged and celebrated. Through the scriptures we see that God alone is “The Most High God”. He is a great God above all gods because He was not created by the imagination of any human being; that would be an idol. David said, “O magnify the LORD with Me. Let us exalt His Name together”.

3-Worship is an expression of the creative order. All nature was created to worship Him. The apostle Paul wrote, “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead”(Romans 1:20 NKJV). The angels were created to worship, “Let all the angels of God worship Him”(Hebrews 1:6b NKJV). Mankind was created to give Him praise, honor and glory. “I will declare Your name to My brethren; In the midst of the assembly I will sing praise to You”(Hebrews 1:12 NKJV).

4-Worship requires sacrifice. David, in the midst of calamity, watched a plague ravish his people due to his disobedience. He understood the meaning of true worship when he bought the field of Araunah to offer sacrifices.  He declared, “I will not offer to the LORD my God of that which cost me nothing”(2 Samuel 24:24b). David only echoed what he had learned from the Word of God. God requires the best of what we have. We are not to give what is left over after we have chosen or used the best for ourselves. With this the apostle Paul agrees. “For of Him, and through Him, and to Him are all things. I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable act of spiritual worship”(Romans 11:36-12:1).

THE HIGHEST PRAISE

God demonstrates the highest form of sacrifice by giving us Himself entirely by giving us His Son, Jesus Christ.  Adam witnessed (in type) in the garden of Eden that sin was a costly affair. He saw God Himself become the first priest in the scriptures, shedding the blood of an innocent animal, clothing the man and the woman with its skin to cover their nakedness and shame. Likewise, Jesus said,”For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life”(John 3:16).  Jesus came to give Himself as the highest praise to the Father by giving His life for us and clothing us with His righteousness.

WORSHIP IS HEAVEN’S CULTURE

 We need to understand that worship is heaven’s culture.  “Unto Him Who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood and has made us a kingdom of priests to our God and His Father; to him [be] glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen”(Revelation 1:5-6) .  John sees the restoration of the ultimate purpose of Mankind. Not only were we CREATED to worship God, but we were REDEEMED to worship God. “Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is the fruit of our lips giving thanks to His Name”(Hebrews 13:15 NKJV).

Copyright(c) 2012, Walter Fletcher Jr., All rights reserved. This article may be copied free of charge provided that it is not altered in any way from its original content. Send all correspondence to: Walterfletcherjr@gmail.com

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