Summary: A five week series looking at why we do the things we do at church. Part two focuses on why we sing and spend time in Praise & Worship.
[NORTHPOINT CHURCH VIDEO]
-for the next few weeks we’re going to be looking at what we do here at Fire & Water, and in the broader picture what we do at church in general.
-because church can be weird. If you’ve never been to church, if you’re not from that church, sometimes the things we do can seem a little, well, off.
-plus, this will hopefully help you see why we have designed Fire & Water the way we have and you can see why we push certain things and encourage people to go in a certain way.
-like last week, we talked about hanging out and games. For someone looking in, it may seem like we just want to waste time. But really, we want to help you build relationships with each other. We want to give you a chance to talk with each other, get to know one another and build friendships, or to use our WATER word, Allies.
-we want this to be an inviting place, somewhere you feel safe and you can be yourself. Somewhere you can invite a friend and they can feel safe, they can be themselves, and we can all learn a little more about God together.
-today we’re talking about praise and worship. More specifically, why we sing. Why in almost every church in the entire world people spend some time during their service singing.
-so before we begin, let’s get a couple of phrases right.
-this is a word the church has kind of taken over. We’ve had a lot of those lately. This is not a church word. Praise is something that you do probably every day and don’t think much about it.
-here is the simplest, easiest, smallest definition of praise. Letting someone else know they are doing a good job.
-that’s it, that’s all that praise is. Saying something good about someone else is praise.
-and it is so simple to do. Watch. Andy, good job leading worship tonight.
-there, I praised him, it’s that simple.
-I can even do it without saying a word. Mr. Patterson is here, he and his wife did the snacks and stuff tonight. [POINT TO HIM AND CLAP]
-and you can all join in.
-I don’t even have to make any noise. [GIVE SOMEONE THE THUMBS UP]. I just praised them. They know it, I know it, everyone here knows it.
-and that’s the key. Praise is not praise if people don’t know it’s praise. There are a lot of people that want to know God in their own way, and that’s true, to a point. Every once in a while I see people who go to church and they don’t sing, they don’t clap, they sit in the back with their arms folded and they say “I’m praising God in my own way.” It sounds mean, but I’m telling you that is simply not true. If I can’t tell you’re praising someone and the person you’re praising can’t tell you’re giving them praise, you aren’t doing it. Again, it’s that simple.
-so what we do when we get together is we praise God together. We let God know that we understand how amazing He is, even if we don’t understand the full extent of it. We let the people around us know that we think God is extraordinary. Together we let God know what we think of Him through our praise.
-in your books I’ve put a list of verses from Psalms and how they show different ways to praise God. There’s clapping, shouting, dancing, kneeling, all sorts of different ways there are to let God know that you acknowledge that He is God and praise Him for who He is.
-now, we could just show up here, play a game, then spend the next twenty minutes clapping. But what’s the fun in that? I’m sure you’ve noticed that a lot of the verses that mention praise also mention music. Think about that, we’re going to come back to that.
-but first I want to make sure we understand the other word:
-worship is not praise, praise is not worship, but you can do both at once. It can happen.
-where praise is telling someone they’re good, worship is complete and utter devotion to something. Worship is total adoration, adoring someone or something. Worship is making that thing your world.
-if you look at the word that is used for worship in your Bible, if you were to go back and read the ancient Hebrew in the Old Testament or the Greek in the New Testament, the words they use for worship come from the same meaning. They mean either bowing in some form, bending over or kneeling, or they also mean lying on the ground completely flat in homage of a person or thing.