BASICS: WHAT EVERY WORSHIPER MUST KNOW ABOUT WORSHIP!
The foundation of everything is one of the important areas to consider. And when it comes to worship, the same principle can be applied. Once we have an understanding of some of the basics about worship as taught in the Bible, we can better express our worship to God and enjoy being in His presence.
- WORSHIP IS THE FIRST AND GREATEST COMMANDMENT:
“Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: ‘Listen, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only Lord. And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’”
Have you ever had time to really think about this? We are almost always in a hurry when we come across this particular scripture. Even now as you read it, you didn’t pause to ponder over what it really means to “love the Lord”. It is very deep.
Worship is the first and greatest commandment, and so loving God must be the highest priority for anyone who desires a deeper relationship with Him. God made us in love, and saved us through love and wants us to come before Him with love.
We can not talk about worshipping God without loving Him. Simply because we express what is in our heart through worship. And if it is not out of love it can not be worship to God. God is the one who loved us first, and the only way to love Him back is to worship Him-with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our mind and with all our strength.
- WORSHIP IS ALL ABOUT OUR LIFE:
“And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice — the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him.”
Worship must not and should not be limited to the four walls of a church auditorium. There is more to it than what happens in a Sunday morning service or any other day for that matter. If our worship to God is limited to what happens during these particular days, then we may not really enjoy what it means to have an intimate relationship with God.
Worship requires time, because it is not a kind of relationship that you rush through, have goosebumps, and that is it. You need to make time for it and cultivate it. It must be an ongoing relationship. That’s why some people would refer to it as a ‘spiritual love affair’.
All that being said, we must also know that there is a price to pay and a sacrifice to make. As the song writer puts it: “A charge to keep I have. A God to glorify…”
The opening text says that you must “offer your bodies as a living sacrifice…”, and this doesn’t sound cool. Offering something if not out of love can be frustrating. Just like giving something in a love relationship you really are not interested in, but you do it out of obligation. It can kill you slowly. But as long as we love God, offering our lives to Him will come with joy and no burden at all.
Let us move into the area of presenting our day to day, ordinary lives to God, learning to please Him with every action and living a life that is holy and acceptable.
- WORSHIP MUST BE IN SPIRIT AND IN TRUTH:
“But the time is coming — indeed it’s here now — when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way. For God is Spirit, so those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.”
Another important thing about worship is how God expects it to be done. That is in spirit and in truth.
Your worship must engage your spirit in pursuit of truth.
You can not choose to go about it any other way other than how it has been prescribed in God’s word. When we worship God in spirit, we do so from our very being, our inner true self and out of sincerity. Once our spirit is involved, we can be sure we will get God’s attention because He is Spirit. And when our spirit connects with His spirit there is fellowship!
We are also required to worship God in truth. That is according to His word. Anything done outside the word of God will not be based on truth. Jesus said: “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” (John 17:17, KJV). One thing we need to also know is that, Jesus Himself is God’s word personified. Therefore we can not worship God without acknowledging Jesus who is the word. (John 1:1).
“Jesus told him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)
If you want to worship the father, then you must go to Him through Jesus who is also the word. What Jesus is simply saying is that, no one can truly worship God if He (Jesus) is not at the center!
The Big Picture:
Worship is loving God wholeheartedly in spirit and truth, and living for His glory in every aspect of life.