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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

When is worship appropriate?

      A lot of Christians seem to only spend their worship time in church once a week.  According to the Bible, worship is involved in everything a believer does. The Bible commands the believer to worship in spirit and in truth.  Some may say that this is how a believer worships, not when.  A closer look at this verse will reveal that both concepts are addressed.

Why can God expect a continuous attitude of worship?

     In the book of Deuteronomy 6:5 is the command to love God.  This command seems impossible and no one that has ever lived, lives today, or in the generations to come will be able to properly obey this verse, except Jesus Christ.

                     "And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart,
              and with all thy soul, and with all thy might."

      God made man in His image and this verse speaks clearly to the three main parts that make up man.  Man is commanded to love God with every facet of his being.  Another great reminder is found in 1 John 4:19.  Believers love Christ because Christ first loved us.  Therefore our response to His love should be on His terms.

      An expression of our love to God is our worship of and service to God.  Worship is defined by Jesus in the gospel of John chapter 4 and the most literal rendering of verse 24 is as follows: "God is a spirit and the ones who are continually worshipping him must (it is necessary) continually worship in spirit and truth."  To worship in spirit and in truth is directed to the how of worship, but this verse is literally telling believers that the continual worshipping God is necessary.  The more that the Holy Spirit convicts a believer of their sin, the more that believer will realize the necessity of true worship.  It seems that worship is inate in man, and for the believer, it is imperative that the true God of the Bible is the object of that worship.  It is is easy to see in the world that unbelievers choose to worship earthly objects, and sometimes their devotion puts a lot of believers to shame.  They seem to understand this verse in John more than the Christ follower.  The life of the believer needs to be characterized by worship and devotion to the One and true God.  Worship is commanded, but is not contingent on the believer's thoughts, feelings, or emotions, but so often today the definition of worship is contingent upon the thoughts, feeling, or emotions of sinful, fallen man.  There is another passage in the New Testament that commands continual worship from the believer.  In the book of Romans chapter 12 and in the first verse, Paul beseeches, or summons his readers to present their bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable unto God, which is our reasonable service.  There are a few key thoughts in this verse. This exhortation is from God.  Paul was only the human instrument used to write this God-inspired exhortation.  2 Timothy 3:16 states that ALL scripture is given by inspiration, of God, or literally translated, God - breathed.  There are at least 40 different human authors used by God, regardless of the human agent, God is the ultimate authority of His word.
        Secondly, our whole life is to be yielded as a worship service to God, but not just any service, holy and acceptable service.  It is very possible for a believer to get caught up in the busy-ness of serving that it becomes a routine and robotic.  All service and each time there is service being done for the Lord, that needs to be brought before the throne of grace.
         Lastly, it is only logical and reasonable for believers to present their lives as a sacrifice to God.  1 John 4:19 states the whole motivation of living for Christ.  The finished work on the cross was the greatest display of Christ's love toward sinners and no believer can reciprocate that act properly, however it is a privilege to have an opportunity glorify God in our lives!

         In order to really know the love of Christ, all one has to do is believe that Christ died for their sins and they shall be saved.  The same love that Christ displayed on the cross of Calvary for the world is also made available to each one that believes.

 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."  John 3:16

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