Worship 11

John 4:24 “God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

Psalm 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; A broken and a contrite heart, O God, You will not despise.

Isaiah 57:15 For thus says the high and exalted One Who lives forever, whose name is Holy, “I dwell on a high and holy place, And also with the contrite and lowly of spirit In order to revive the spirit of the lowly And to revive the heart of the contrite.

Matthew 15:8 ‘THIS PEOPLE HONORS ME WITH THEIR LIPS, BUT THEIR HEART IS FAR AWAY FROM ME 9 ‘BUT IN VAIN DO THEY WORSHIP ME, TEACHING AS DOCTRINES THE PRECEPTS OF MEN.'”

Isaiah 1:13 “Bring your worthless offerings no longer, Incense is an abomination to Me. New moon and sabbath, the calling of assemblies– I cannot endure iniquity and the solemn assembly. 14 “I hate your new moon festivals and your appointed feasts, They have become a burden to Me; I am weary of bearing them.
15 “So when you spread out your hands in prayer, I will hide My eyes from you; Yes, even though you multiply prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are covered with blood.

Malachi 1:10 “Oh that there were one among you who would shut the gates, that you might not uselessly kindle fire on My altar! I am not pleased with you,” says the LORD of hosts, “nor will I accept an offering from you.

If we reflect on the verses listed above, it seems that we must arrive at an inescapable conclusion. The conclusion is that there can be no true worship apart from a heart that is truly and really given over to God and is in submission to God. If worship is from the inner man and not just the external actions, then worship must come from the heart. Our treasure is where our heart is and as such our worship flows from what we treasure. If the only true sacrifice is a broken heart, then anything we do that comes from a heart that is not broken is not worship. God dwells in hearts that are contrite and lowly, but He does not dwell in those that are not. If it is the case that it is not true worship when a person uses words but the heart is far from God, then true worship must at least include the heart. These things must be meditated on and we must cry out to God to teach us in the inner man.

1 Peter 2:9 But you are A CHOSEN RACE, A royal PRIESTHOOD, A HOLY NATION, A PEOPLE FOR God’s OWN POSSESSION, so that you may proclaim the excellencies of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

Why does God have a chosen race? Why is there a royal priesthood of believers? What are believers a holy nation? Why is there a people of God’s own possession? It is so that they may proclaim His excellencies. God saves sinners in order that they may proclaim His excellencies. This is to say that when people who are part of the professing church do not proclaim His excellencies, but instead proclaim the glories and wonders of other things, they are at the very least not doing what they are supposed to. However, it may be that they simply are not part of the people of God’s possession.

While people may be able to do word studies and so on to come up with a tight definition of worship, we can also simply glean our ideas from Scripture. It is worship to be involved in proclaiming the excellencies of God in prayer, song, and in preaching. It is worship to proclaim His excellencies in daily life. Indeed our hearts must be engaged in proclaiming His excellencies or we are doing nothing but lip service. We may proclaim His excellencies to Him, to ourselves, and to others. But we are to proclaim His excellencies from the heart and not just an act of duty. When God is opening our eyes to His excellencies and opening our hearts and mouths to proclaim Him, we are in worship.

How can we explain the fact that we are commanded to worship and yet our worship adds precisely nothing to God? How are we to explain the fact that God has to work in us true worship if we are to worship? It is in one sense self-evident. God manifests Himself through His people to Himself and when He does this He is bringing us into a sharing in His worship. But again, worship is not the act of the flesh, it is the act of God in the human soul by which the human being shares in His life and in His worship. Sinners are saved from living for the worship of themselves and proclaiming their own excellencies (in their own minds) to glorying in God and sharing in His life of worship or proclaiming His excellencies. This is far from just following a bulletin or order of worship, it is following God in His eternal life that dwells in His people.

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