January 8, 2012 – Read the Word on Worship
Why do you worship God? Is it because your denomination requires it or is just a facet of religion that you practice? Do you worship because God needs the attention to be more like God or because it makes you feel better? Or do you worship God because of who He is and what He has done? Join us Sunday, January 8th to begin our REACH SERIES: REACH UP and worship. REACH IN and disciple. REACH OUT and evangelize. This Sunday we will examine Isaiah 6 and learn how worship looks for a man who steps into the presence of God and sees the holiness of God and receives cleansing and mercy of God. Join us this Sunday for the first a three week study into our mission at Sunrise Community Church: We are called to WORSHIP God, EQUIP the saints, and PROCLAIM the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Word On Worship – January 8, 2012 Download / Print
“Praise the LORD from the heavens, praise Him in the heights above. Praise Him, all His angels, praise Him, all His heavenly hosts. Praise Him, sun and moon, praise Him, all you shining stars. Praise Him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies. Let them praise the name of the LORD, for He commanded and they were created. He set them in place for ever and ever; He gave a decree that will never pass away.”
Too often, worship on Sunday morning is considered a spectator sport. The congregation sits passively as the “professionals” up front perform for God in their singing, praying and preaching. The choir sings, the pastor preaches, the worship leaders play and the congregation may chime in for a hymn or two. But is that really a biblical model for worship? Is that how Israel worshipped in the Old Testament? Is that the worship experience of the first century church in the Book of Acts? I do not think so.
Throughout Scripture we see people standing and shouting praise to God with loud voices, singing songs of worship, playing musical instruments, sharing testimonies, lifting hands and giving tithes and offerings. Worship was not a dreary, passive experience but a dynamic encounter with the living God. It was congregational in its very essence. First Corinthians gives us a picture of a free and enthusiastic experience in the church, but with form and function. Any member was free to take part as the Spirit might prompt and the expectation was that God could use someone no one expected for the glory of God.
Praise can take many forms, from the reading of Scripture to singing of songs to individual testimony. Do not fall under the misconception that praise is just a song or that worship is the work of those who stand in the front. When you come into the House of God, come prepared to actively worship your God. Praise Him in the hymns you sing, proclaim His glory in the testimony you give, revere Him in your prayers. Consider His majesty in your silence, ponder the glory of His creation in your meditations, stand in awe at His holiness, and bow down as your heart recalls His great mercy and compassion He has shown to you.
We need to recapture the dynamic of scriptural, congregational worship. We will experience the blessing of God upon our church when we come together as the people of God understanding we are coming together in His presence to worship Him. I often hear of people talking about the need for revival in the church. Usually they are looking for people up front who are more poised in their performance or dynamic in their styling. The first sign to true revival is when the entire assembly of God’s people become directly involved in the public worship of God.