Here’s to a revival of pure worship in the church
Psalm 111:1 — “Praise the Lord! I will give thanks to the Lord with all my heart, in the company of the upright and in the assembly.” Psalm 96:9 — “Worship the Lord in the splendor of His holiness; tremble before Him, all the earth.” Psalm 29:2 “Ascribe to the Lord the glory due to His Name; worship the Lord in the majesty of holiness.” John 4:23 — “But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”
Recently, I listened to an incredible recording of 2,500 voices, accompanied by a full orchestra, singing Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus” from the “Messiah.” I wept — I bowed down, I lifted up my hands, I shouted, I looked up in awe, I sang along, I spoke in tongues — in other words — I worshiped. It is my hope, that in the midst of the current pandemic and civil unrest, the lord will bring a revival of pure worship to the American church.
We do not lack for energetic and edifying praise. And, in keeping with Biblical standards of praise, we clap, dance and make a joyful noise unto the lord. And as this praise continues, and even intensifies, may it usher us into his presence where a fresh anointing for worshiping in the beauty of his holiness falls upon us.
Not choreographed religious routines or mere natural responses to rhythms and catchy tunes — but a spiritual worship that includes the following manifestations.
First — an awareness of his holiness. To be overwhelmed by God’s “otherness” — realizing that he is not as we are; but is intrinsically holy, and absolutely and infinitely pure. He is holiness — and our attire, posture and demeanor ought to acknowledge that.
And where is the awe and trembling that filled the first century church? Worship brings us low before him as we recognize his might and majesty. Christ is our friend who sticks closer than a brother — but we are not his equal.
He is high and lifted up. He is creator God, before all things, all-knowing, all-powerful and king of kings and lord of lords. May our Sunday services be filled with awe and trembling as his presence is manifested among us.
True worship also involves affirmation. While in awe of his presence we affirm his word to be true. We stand on his promises, we testify of how his word has worked in our lives. Worship is a celebration of truth — and that not of a theology or creed — but of Jesus Christ, who is the truth.
And we must give place to adoration in our worship. Our lord is to be adored in every way as we lift up our heads, bow in humble contrition, and let our heart “make a big deal” over his goodness and mercy toward us. Through worship we wash his feet with our tears; and let him know that we love him with all our heart, mind and soul.
The praise and worship that I am believing for in the church of America, will triumphantly engage us in spiritual warfare, embolden our witness, bring about miracles of healing and deliverance and help bring saints into the maturity of Christ.
(From the Pulpit is a weekly sermon provided by the clergy members of the Weirton Ministerial Association.)