ACCEPTABLE WORSHIP

 

Introduction

 

The most important activity any Christian does in this world is to worship the one, true and living Heavenly Father as He is revealed in Christ Jesus through the power of the Holy Spirit. The Trinitarian God is the Christian’s only object of worship

 

“Sing praises to God, sing praises; sing praises to our King, sing praises” (Psa. 47:6).

 

“Come let us sing for joy to the LORD; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.  Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song” (Psa. 95:1-2).

 

“Come let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the LORD our Maker . . .” (Psa. 95:6).

 

“Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth, burst into jubilant song with music” (Psa. 98:4).

 

“The LORD lives!  Praise be to my Rock!  Exalted be God my Savior” (Psa. 18:46)!

 

            Worship is first an individual act. A Christian must know who God is and why He is to be worshipped before he or she can offer up acceptable individual worship.  All defective worship is essentially a misunderstanding of the person of God and what He requires of His people to worship Him correctly.

 

“I will give thanks to the LORD because of his righteousness and will sing praise to the name of the LORD Most High” (Psa. 7:17).

 

“Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the splendor of his holiness” (Psa. 29:2).

 

“I will sing to the LORD, for he has been good to me” (Psa. 13:6).

 

            The Christian must also be convinced that the one, true and living God has been revealed to us in inspired Scripture.  He has told us in the Bible how He wants to be worshipped, and it is our responsibility to rightly understand the Bible as to how we are to worship God aright.  Only the God of Scripture is the true God and worthy of our worship.

 

            “I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise” (Psa. 18:3).

 

            “To him belongs eternal praise” (Psa. 111:10).

 

            The God of Scripture is the only one, true and living God.  There is no other God, and He is to be exalted above all false gods.

 

“For you, O LORD, are the Most High over all the earth; you are exalted far above all gods” (Psa. 96:9).

 

“I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart; before the gods I will sing your praise” (Psa. 138:1).

 

            Praise exalts the Lord God and it is pleasing to Him.  He delights in the worship of His people.

 

“Praise the LORD, for the LORD is good; sing praise to his name, for that is pleasant” (Psa. 135:3).

 

“Praise the LORD.  How good it is to sing praises to our God, how pleasant and fitting to praise him” (Psa. 147:1).

 

“Sing joyfully to the LORD, you righteous; it is fitting for the upright to praise him” (Psa. 33:1).

 

            For individual worship to be effective, it must come from the inner man that wants to please God.

 

“I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonders.   I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High” (Psa. 9:1-2).

 

“My heart is steadfast, O God; I will sing and make music with my soul” (Psa. 108:1).

 

            Individual worship is not something we do once a week at church but we do it all the time.  A Christian is to have a lifestyle of worship and praise.

 

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to god—this is your spiritual act of worship” (Rom. 12:1).

 

“I will sing to the LORD all my life; I will sing praise to my God as long as I live” (Psa. 104:33).

 

“I will extol the LORD at all times; his praise will always be on my lips” (Psa. 34:1).

 

“It is good to praise the LORD and make music to your name, O Most High, to proclaim your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night. . .” (Psa. 92:1-2).

 

“Let the name of the LORD be praised, both now and forevermore” (Psa. 113:2).

           

Worship is secondarily corporate.  Once the Christian understands individual worship, then he must seek to grasp the meaning, motive and method for corporate worship.  Collective worship is unique.  There is a presence and power of God in corporate worship that cannot be experienced in individual worship.

 

“Glorify the LORD with me; let us exalt his name together” (Psa. 34:3).

 

Author’s Comments

 

One of the major purposes for this study on worship is to determine what the Bible teaches about individual and corporate worship.  It is the author’s desire to build a biblical theology of individual and corporate worship.  The design of this material is to reach the average Christian and Christian lay-teacher with the basic Scriptures about worship.  This work might be called a “Biblical Handbook on Worship.”  The purpose of this book is not to present every aspect of worship from a scholastic view, but to state what the Bible teaches with mention of various views on key differences between Christians on the subject of worship.  All will not agree with the author’s conclusions, but hopefully all will grapple with the Scripture on this vital subject of worship.  Ultimately, the worship wars of the modern church will be solved as all come to the Bible, making it the only rule of faith and practice for individual and corporate worship.  Hopefully, this book will bring a spirit of love, tolerance and acceptance between those who hold dearly to their particular traditional or contemporary or blended worship services, which they honestly believe is the right way to offer up acceptable worship to Almighty  God.

 

This biblical theology may seem odd to some, inappropriate to others and irrelevant to many.  The author clearly understands how people may react to making an attempt to reproduce New Testament worship.  However, all Christians must take seriously the statement that the Bible is the only rule of faith and practice, even as it relates to individual and corporate worship.  The heart desire of every Christian should be do make the content, structure and style of worship conform as nearly as possible to the biblical pattern.