I’ve been obsessing over what God thinks about worship.

In my search, I recently opened the New Testament to look for some of the more blatant passages on worship. What follows is a thumbnail shortlist of some the intricacies our corporate worship should involve. I would love your thoughtful reflection on this.

  • Let doctrine lead to worship (Col.3:15-17)
  • Let truth lead to worship (John 4:23)
  • Let His glory lead to worship (Rev. 4:11)
  • Let his power lead to worship (Rev. 4:11)
  • Let awe for Him accompany worship (Heb. 12:28)
  • Let reverence for Him accompany worship (Heb. 12:28; Eph. 5:18-21)
  • Our worship must be acceptable (Heb. 12:28-29)
  • Jesus makes our worship acceptable by ransoming us with his blood (Rev. 5:9)
  • Let our worship be Christ-centered (Col. 3:17)
  • Let our worship be authorized and made possible in Christ (Eph. 5:20)
  • Let our worship be authentic (Eph. 5:19; Col. 3:16)
  • Let our worship come from thankfulness (Heb. 12:28; Col.3:15b,16; Eph.5:20)
  • Let our worship have feeling (John 4:23)
  • Let our unity be through the worship of God in Christ (Rev. 7:9-10; Col.3:15-16)
  • Let us honor and submit to one another in our worship of God (Eph. 5:21)
  • Let our worship of God edify each other (Col. 3:16)
  • Let our worship of God in Christ be filled by the Spirit (Eph. 5:18)
Do we experience these things together? What other profound ways do you experience God with other people?

About Lazo

Lazo is the pastor for preaching and vision at Reality SB. He is committed to spreading the worth of Jesus in Santa Barbara, through the expository preaching of God's Word. You might like these blog posts, 5 Wrong Ways To Comfort Hurting People or An Orthodoxy That Breathes

Posted on May 28, 2011, in Church, worship and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 20 Comments.

  1. Great meditation Chris. Thanks for sharing. Your list is pretty exhaustive. In addition to this I would be interested to read a paper or book on the evolution of worship through Biblical Theolgy. I would also be interested in a study on the future of worship. Almost like a “where we have been and where we are going…” Thanks for loving Jesus!

    Josh

  2. I have been pondering on this for quite some time now. John 3:30 comes to mind. I’ve focused to much on myself when this life I have is meant for God. During time of singing His praises my mind wanders, because I am egocentric. I’ve come to the realization that I will never give God worship that He is pleased with till He has become so great and I so less that it’s like I’ve disappeared. Correct me if I’m wrong brother.

  3. Darius :

    I’ve come to the realization that I will never give God worship that He is pleased with till He has become so great and I so less that it’s like I’ve disappeared.

    Wow, that’s a great element that I missed. That makes me think of Romans 12:1 that tells us to “present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.”
    Great reminder that worship involves Him consuming our entire being, and as you said, him becoming greater and greater, and us decreasing as a result. Thanks for that Darius.

  4. I said it, but it’s easier said than done. As long as I am ME I am egocentric, making John 3:30 come to fruition that much harder. And Romans 12:1 leads me to a question Chris…Does present my body as a living sacrifice mean that I should worship with my whole body, or to sacrifice my needs and by needs I mean give up meals for fasting or sleep for prayer?

    • Darius, it would seem that the passage (Rom.12:1) describes both of the things you mentioned. Is that where you were going?

  5. How are you defining worship?

  6. Cool. I think that happened to me once while in Seattle.

  7. Disregard that last comment. I thought I was responding to something else.

  8. That’s what I mean Chris. I mentioned fasting and prayer, but…is dancing included, such as King David did? It seems like a silly question, but I figure clarity is important.

    • I think that dancing is an outward expression of what worship is described of as a heart issue, or a matter of the “spirit” (John 4:23). This may seem overly simplistic, but I would say that dancing is included if it is an accurate reflection of your affection for God, and yet it is also not mandatory…what I would put in the list above.

  9. The only thing we will bring to Heaven is our worship. If the Church is the closest earthy representation of Heaven, then it would seem a significant part of community. : )

    • The only thing we will bring to Heaven is our worship. If the Church is the closest earthy representation of Heaven, then it would seem a significant part of community.

      Are you saying that community is a significant part of our worship?

      • Without a doubt. Especially if thats much of what we will be doing together in heaven.

  10. And arguably the most famous passages on worship in the NT involve community… Colossians 3:16 & Ephesians 5:19

    • Your verses are right on target. A couple of Old Test. Along the same lines- 2Chron 29:27-30, Psalms 111:1,22:22.

  11. I’ve been thinking Chris about the songs we sing and our emotions. Do we allow our emotions to get the best of us during Worship, and are our songs honest or just follow along jingles?

    • Well… if Rory is right about corporate worship (see above comments), then there should be an element of following-along to our songs, right? I mean…we don’t gather together on Sunday mornings to be individualistic. Of course, a jingle doesn’t necessarily grasp the overwhelming glory of God, either…

      I also think there is a difference between emotion and emotionalism.

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