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"Oh, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together"! (Psalm 34:3) Last week's blog gave reasons to worship God with other believers. This week, I want to talk about the meaning and nature of Christian worship. To be clear, there is private and there is corporate worship. Both are specifically taught in the Scripture.

A few examples of private worship are: "Bless the Lord, O MY (caps added) soul . . .!" (Psalm 103:1); "I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have being. May my meditation be pleasing to Him, for I rejoice in the Lord." (Psalm 104:33-34) "My mouth will speak in praise of the LORD. . . "

(Psalm 145:19)

Also, here are a few examples of corporate worship: The early church worshipped together. "Day by day, continuing in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house. . .praising God. . . ." (Acts 2:46-47)

"While THEY (caps added) were ministering to the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said. . . . " (Acts 13:2) "The twenty-four elders fall down before Him who sits on the throne, and worship Him who lives forever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne, saying 'Worthy are You, our Lord and our God to receive glory and honor and power'. . . ." (Revelation 4:10-11)

The MEANING of worship is profound. Its basic meaning is to declare the WORTH of someone. Regarding deity, it means to ascribe worth, majestic praise, honor and glory to God! It means to render to God reverence, exaltation, adoration, unconditional love, deepest devotion, surrender or submission and obedience. Worship is acknowledging with thankfulness God's "lovingkindness, justice and righteousness that He exercises on earth. . . ." (Jeremiah 9:24)

Genuine worship always involves an action. Singing, praying, reading the Bible, celebrating Holy Communion, tithing, serving and teaching are all essential parts of worship to God.

Worship is all about God, not about me or you! In this me-ism culture, we tend to want to make worship about me and meeting my needs and\or desires. Individualism running wild. The Scripture teaches that our worship must be all about honoring and pleasing God; to desire and purpose to put Him first, our highest priority. In worship, God is the audience; we are the participants in glorifying Him!

Worship is not a ritual, it is a relationship; a relationship between the Redeemer and the Redeemed! Worship is not a form, but a transformative work of the Holy Spirit in our innermost being, as we focus on blessing God through attitudes and acts of worship. The worship of God involves acknowledging and celebrating His presence, His power and His perfection in gratitude. Worship includes an understanding and awe of God's holiness; His character and attributes.

Expressions of worship are clearly identified in the Bible and we should be aware of and practice them in our worship.

  1. Speaking (Psalm 34:1): "I will extol the Lord at all times; His praise will always be on my lips."

  2. Singing (Psalm 47:6): "Sing praises to God, sing praises to our King, sing praises."

  3. Shouting (Psalm 27:6): ". . . at His tabernacle will I sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the Lord."

  4. Bowing (Psalm 95:6): "Come let us bow down in worship; let us kneel before the Lord our Maker."

  5. Standing (Psalm 119:120): "My flesh trembles in fear of You; I stand in awe of Your laws."

  6. Dancing (Psalm 149:3): "Let them praise His name with dancing and make music to Him with tambourine and harp."

  7. Playing Instruments (Psalm 33:2-3): "Praise the Lord with the harp; make music to Him on the stringed lyre. Sing to Him a new song; play skillfully and shout for joy."

  8. Clapping (Psalm 47:1): "Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of joy." This is not clapping as in the appreciation of a performance, but a genuine clapping because of the joy of being in His Presence! We dare not relegate "the King of all kings and the Lord of all lords", the Holy and majestic God to the role of a performer. He is the Sovereign Lord of the entire universe, and clapping in worship is a joyful response to being in His awesome presence!

  9. Lifting Hands (Psalm 63:4): "I will praise You as long as I live, and in Your name I will lift up my hands."

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About Me

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God has blessed me with a long and fruitful ministry! I have over 40 years in pastoral ministry, retreat speaking, Evangelism, teaching and Christian Radio broadcasting.


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