Worshiping God is so vital to the life of a Christian. According to Jesus the Father is looking for worshipers who will worship ~~ Him.
It isn’t that God needs worship. Rather, He knows we need worship. He looks for worshipers because He understands the value that worshiping Him has in our lives. People who do not worship God do not understand this value.
In the New Testament worship is depicted as an intimate kiss. People who do not worship do not understand the intimate nature of worship and therefore never enter in. People who do not worship do not know what they are missing. People who will not worship must be afraid of intimacy. Why else would they not worship?
I love John Mark McMillan’s song HOW HE LOVES. I love the line that says, “So heaven meets earth like a sloppy wet kiss, and my heart burns violently inside of my chest.” Have you ever been to a worship service where the words “sloppy wet kiss” were dumbed down so as not to offend someone? Those who dumb down those words do not understand worship.
People who understand this value cannot live without worshiping God. People who worship God know we become like Him as we behold Him. Beholding Him means more than looking at Him. It means holding Him, close.
For me worship is deep and it is intimate. Worship is personal. It is about me and Him and no one else. Do not try to break into our bedchamber when I am being intimate with my Lord. Jesus must have felt that injustice when He cleansed the Temple two times. He came against all those who were diverting the attention of those who wanted to worship God away from God. His disciples later remembered “Zeal for God’s house consumed him.”
This may not have been compassionate to the ones His anger was directed toward but for those whose worship had been hijacked it was very compassionate.
You see, there is no compassion where there is no passion. Compassion means “together with passion”. The compassionate ones are the ones who join together with the people who are being mistreated. Unfortunately, religious people never get this because their focus is on themselves. Worshipers by nature are passionate which means they have compassion.
People who will not worship are generally self-centered. They cannot focus on anything or anyone but themselves. They see God the way they see themselves. Because they do not like themselves they cannot get close to God. The god they serve is their own appetites, which are self consuming. Paul said in Romans these people do worship. They worship themselves, not God.
People who will not worship tell worshipers a lot about themselves. Worship is God-centered. People who will not worship need an eye exam. Their focus is on the wrong person.
If people understood they look like what they look at then they would take their eyes off of themselves and place them on the Lord. Worship is about intimacy. Physical intimacy is about a connection so deep that those being intimate become one. This is why the Bible is clear, do not get physically intimate with anyone other than your covenant spouse.
We worship not to become one with the Lord but because we are one with the Lord! We are married to the Lord – right now.
Worship is natural for a Christian. Worship is the norm and if a Christian is not a worshiper then there is something not right with their perspective about God and or themselves.
Worship is the norm in heaven. Heaven is within the believer. God is looking for worshipers because He is listening for the sound of heaven.
When heaven in us releases the sound of heaven then a synergistic corporate anointing is released that will bring forth God’s rule. The Bible says. “God inhabits the praise [worship] of His people.” God rules from the realm of worship, which is heaven’s realm.
Many believers live outside the rule of God in their lives because they do not worship. This creates a vacuum that can be filled by satanic influence. The serpent has been cast on his belly to eat dust. Humans are made from dust. Dust is symbolic of our fallen nature [our self-centeredness]. The serpent has been granted permission to eat our flesh [carnality]. When we focus on ourselves and not on the Lord it is like ringing the dinner bell for the serpent to come and feast on us.
This serpent was excommunicated from the Presence of God by virtue of his refusal to worship God. He chose to worship himself. That is called self-centeredness and God cannot inhabit that. Many believers are excluded from the Presence of God by virtue of their refusal to worship God. It isn’t that God is not present. It is their focus is on the wrong person so they never get the benefit of His Presence. They are absorbed in their own presence which causes them not to recognize His Presence.
My father, who died when I was ten used to tell me, “Son, you will play [in the game] the way you practice for the game.” I have always remembered that and when I was born again in 1980 at the age of 23, I brought that revelation into my Christian life. I have not always lived up to that ideal perfectly but I understood the importance of private devotion. I worship in private because I am a worshiper. I worship in public because I am a worshiper. My public worship is simply the overflow of my private worship.
We are never to take off our worship hat. Worshiping God is more than singing Him a song. Worship is a lifestyle of total devotion to the Lord.
Worshiping God is about devotion to God. Devotion comes from two Latin words, de = formally, and vovere = to vow. Worship is about intimacy with the One we have formally made vows to. This is a picture of a covenant married couple.
King David said that he would not give anything to God that did not cost him something [2 Sam 24:24]. David also said, “So I will sing praise to Your name forever, that I may pay my vows day by day” [Psalm 61:8]. The Hebrew word for “pay” is shalam and it means to be in a covenant of peace. Shalam is the root word for shalom. Shalom is a single word that carries with it the greatest blessing in the Bible.
Worshiping God will cost us something. It will cost us the right to divert our focus from Him to ourselves, or someone or something else. Worshiping God costs us our life. For our life is no longer ours. We have been bought with a price, a very high price indeed.
We humans, and yes even born again humans, are so easily diverted. We believe the lie that our attention span is getting shorter.
This is why seeker sensitive churches thrive. You can go to their worship services and be out in an hour or less. The actual worship time in these worship services usually last 15 minutes or so.
These worship services are geared toward children [an attitude], not mature adults. The attitude of the organizers is, “we cannot keep their attention for long so we have to move quickly and get done.”
Well that is exactly the problem. You are trying to keep their attention.
Hello, what about their attention being on God. Are you telling me God cannot keep our attention for very long. Maybe the god you serve, not the God that I serve. Jesus quoted Psalm 82:6 in when He said, “I have said, ‘you are gods”’ [John 10:34].
It is the god of this world who has blinded the minds of those who will not believe. This god is not the serpent. This god is the mind that has not been renewed. This un-renewed mind sits in the temple of God [our body] and diverts our attention from worshiping God. In fact it is at war with God.
Scripture tells us this mind cannot receive anything from the Spirit of God.
But when we understand our core value is that of worshiping God, then we will understand the passion, and compassion of Jesus when He thrashed the money changers and destroyed their commercialization of the House of God. He was not against the selling of what He required to be brought for worship. He was against the diversion of focus. The money changers represented all that was wrong with corporate worship. Worship had become about the method of worship instead of the Person of worship. It became about stuff.
Most people never enter into the worship of God because of their stuff. Jesus is after all that stuff. So beware, He will reveal His compassion.
Listen, Jesus is not rude, crude, mean, or an abuser. But He is serious about worship. What are we making God’s house. It is supposed to be a house of worship.
For HIS Glory!
Dr. Kevin M. Drury