#1: What is Worship?
Sermon shared by Timothy Archer
Summary: #1 of 7 on Worship. This is mainly a study of the words that refer to worship in the New Testament.
Denomination: Christian/Church of Christ
Audience: General adults
Itís used in Romans 12:1--
Rom. 12:1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of Godís mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God ó this is your spiritual act of worship.
Giving yourself to God every day is your worship to God.
Literally means ďserviceĒ or ďministry.Ē In the Greek translation of the Old Testament, it was used almost exclusively to refer to the sacrificial ministry of the priests. When they talked about sacrifices and temple worship, they used this word.
It is rarely used in the New Testament. In fact, many other studies on worship donít include this word. I want to include it because of Acts 13:2--
Acts 13:2 While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, ďSet apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.Ē
This passage is of special importance because it is the only passage in which one of these words is used to describe what Christians do when assembled together. The words for worship are never applied to Christians worshipping together except for this one case. The Bible doesnít talk about this assembly as being our worship time... like we do. It talks about Christians assembling to take the Lordís Supper and of them assembling to hear Godís word... but worship is something you live every day.
The Greeks had come to use this word for the sacrifice of prayer; they compared their prayers to sacrifices to the gods.
Group of words referring to ďfear.Ē The first is familiar, like the word phobia.
Look at Hebrews 5:7--
Heb. 5:7 During the days of Jesusí life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.
The word "reverent" is "fear." The King James version talks about "holy fear."
We see this idea in Revelation 14:6-7, how these words are used to describe Christian worship:
Rev. 14:6 Then I saw another angel flying in midair, and he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth ó to every nation, tribe, language and people. 7 He said in a loud voice, ďFear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgment has come. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water.Ē
My mind doesnít like to think about fearing God. But some examples help. For example, did you know that you are surrounded by electricity? There are wires all over the place in this building. Itís full of electricity. Arenít you scared? No, probably not. Are you scared every time you turn on a light switch? I doubt it. Youíre probably not scared of electricity. But if I asked you to stick a fork in the socket, would you do it? Or do you fear electricity?
Iím not scared of God. I donít walk around saying, "Oh, Heís around me! Heís going to get me." But I am scared to cross Him. Iím scared to rebel against His will. He is a just God, and He has given me laws and guidance. I will do what He wants because I fear Him.
I fear the laws of this land. I donít hide from every policeman I see, but I know that if I do something
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