1997-02-10 - Worship

Psalm 135:3 "Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good; Sing praises to His name for his name is lovely."

We all worship differently I bet. In fact the spectrum on this devotional list is probably quite broad as to our Sunday worship service styles. Maybe one or more of you are members of the Country Good Time Church in CA. If you are your church offers line dancing after the service that is led by the pastor. In fact if you are in this church it is the line dancing that is supposed to be your motivation for going to the church if your church advertisements mean anything.

Or maybe your church is like the church I am a member at. My church attempts to get people to attend it by placing billboards around the city of Philadelphia saying, "Jesus Hated Church". Sad but true. I always wonder who these gimmicks will attract and once they are attracted, won't they be disappointed when they come, for instance to my church, and find that we have a conservative Presbyterian worship service.

Well, what is worship? I suppose there is no perfect definition, but lets try one. Worship is thoughtful praise of God for who He is and for what He has done. Funny, but line dancing is not in the definition. There are several things to say about worship, lets hit on some of them:

  1. Where did the term come from? Well, if we were living back in the times of Chaucer or Shakespeare the term would just be coming into use. It would be a shortening of the term worth-ship. The concept being to attribute worth to someone who was worthy. We attribute praise to God because of His worth-ship. This was eventually called worship.
  2. We praise God because of His goodness. (PS. 135:3) There is nothing that God has ever done that He could have done better. Nothing! Remember in Genesis 1 where God reflects on the things that He had created and says, "And God saw that it was good". The actions of God are good doings. God is the quintessential do gooder. He always does good.
  3. We praise God because of His electing love. (PS. 135:4) Lots of people do not like to talk about election. They shiver at the thought that God choose them, before they choose Him. Shiver all you wish, it is all over Scripture, For example Romans 9. Our response should be warm praise to the Lord for His graciousness to us rather than a cold shiver that says, I choose you and saved myself. We ought to give thanks to our saving God, whose electing love has been upon us all our days, yes, even into all eternity. "All in the church may hear the Word of Christ, but few hear Christ in the Word." George Swinnock "It is a poor worship to move our hats, not our hearts." Thomas Adams

Soli Deo Gloria,