Hidden Treasures

The Bible is much more than a book of religion.

Worship series #1: What is worship?

 

Many people think they are worshipping God, but are not worshipping Him at all.

They express their worship in everything from formalism to wild emotionalism. It is one thing to follow a formal order of service; it’s another thing to worship formalism.  It’s one thing to worship with deep emotion; it’s another thing to give ourselves to emotionalism. Formalism and emotionalism are not honoring to God.  They had false worship in  Jesus’ day and He was not pleased. Matthew 15:7-9  They had it in Old Testament times and God was not pleased.  Amos 5:21-27   

Worship has little to do with externals.

Church buildings, worship centers, altars, crosses, so-called worship music and sacraments have little to do with worship. Preachers and worship leaders cannot work up genuine worship by setting the atmosphere for emotional experiences. I have observed preachers orchestrate phony “worship experiences.”   I’ve seen them turn it on or turn it off on command. 

Worship can take place anywhere.  

You may truly worship God in a church service as you listen to God’s Word preached or as you participate or listen to the singing of Christ-honoring hymns  and spiritual songs.  You may worship God as you lie on your bed at night, unable to sleep, or as you are hiking in the woods or driving through rush-hour traffic.  

Worship can be expressed privately and quietly,

It may be expressed with great exuberance as when David danced before the Lord with all his might.  II Samuel 6:14 One thing is certain. Any outward expression of worship or service offered to God in pride or to show-off to others our “spirituality” offends God and it offends those who love the Lord. 

Worship is a response to the knowledge of God.

God seeks true worshippers to worship Him in spirit and in truth. One of the best explanations of worship is found in John 4. Here we read the story of Jesus and the Samaritan woman.  While Jesus was dealing with her about her sins and her need of salvation, she tried to divert the conversation to questions concerning where to worship. Jesus gently focused her attention on to the substance of genuine worship. He teaches her that worship is a spiritual matter; not a fleshly, emotional experience. 

True worship is based on the truth of the knowledge of God.  It is a response to hearing God’s truth.    Those who simply want to experience excitement and a pious feeling will be misled. Those who hunger to know God by listening to the preaching of His Word, will always respond in true worship and adoration of Christ. Such worship will always result in a changed life, a life in which Christ is the center.  

True worship is the most intimate experience a Christian has with God.

It ought to continue day and night without ceasing, even as we are commanded to “pray without ceasing.” 

True worship takes place wherever Christ is honored.

When hearts are humbled and overwhelmed with the grace of God,  only then does true worship takes place. We honor Christ as we eagerly listen to His Word and sing hymns and songs that glorify Him. 

Sin is the only thing that hinders worship.

It is my desire as a preacher; not to lead my congregation in “worship experiences”, but to faithfully preach God’s Word so that people can recognize sins that hinder their relationship with God, confess them and be cleansed and restored to a right relationship with God and begin living a life of worship. 

Steps to worship and service

As we hear God’s Word and are made aware of our sins; we confess them to Him and He forgives and cleanses us by the shed blood of Christ. 

When we are forgiven and cleansed; our hearts are filled with gratitude and praise to God. 

When our hearts are filled with gratitude and praise to God;  only then can we  worship Him. 

True worshippers of Christ alone are able to effectively serve Him. All other worship and service offered to God is insulting and an affront to Him. 

If you live in or are traveling through the greater Albuquerque area, we invite you to visit us at Alameda Bible Church and open your heart to God’s Word and allow Him to teach you and draw you into a life of ceaseless worship and faithful service to Him.

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May 30, 2006 - Posted by | Worship Series

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