Summary: This sermon looks at seven myths that we can hold about worship.
Seven Myths About Worship
Mr. Smith went to church on Sunday morning. He heard the organist miss a note during the prelude, and he winced. He saw a teenager talking when everybody was supposed to be bowed in silent prayer. He felt like the usher was watching to see what he put in the offering plate and it made him boil. He caught the preacher making a slip of the tongue – not once but five times in the sermon – by actual count. As he slipped out through the side door during the closing hymn, he muttered to himself, "Never again, what a bunch of clods and hypocrites!"
Mr. Jones went to church on Sunday morning. He heard the organist play an arrangement of "A Mighty Fortress" and he thrilled at the majesty of it. He heard a young girl take a moment in the service to speak her simple moving message of the difference her faith makes in her life. He was glad to see that this church was sharing in a special offering for the hungry children of Nigeria. He especially appreciated the sermon that Sunday – it answered a question that had bothered him for a long time. He thought as he walked out the doors of the church, "How can a man come here and not feel the presence of God?"
…Both men went to the same church, on the same Sunday morning. Each found what he was looking for. What do we look for on Sunday morning? Do you look for God? Do you look to see how God is working through people and in people? Do you look to see how a perfect and holy God – works through an imperfect a flawed people – and in the process – He is glorified?
Worship Is An Imperfect People Worshiping A Perfect God
One characteristic of most of the churches that are experiencing dynamic growth is that God is exalted in worship. Someone has said, “If we haven’t learned to be worshipers, it doesn’t really matter how well we do anything else”. The chief end of man is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever – or simply put – to worship God! In Revelation 4:11 we read, “Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.” However, if we wish to worship God we must, “worship Him in spirit and in truth.” Many times there are many falsehoods – many myths that get in our way of worshiping God. Today I want us to examine seven of those myths.
Worship is where we talk about God
- Truth #1: Worship is when we encounter God
Worship is not when we come together to just talk about God:
Worship Is When We Encounter God
Now our conversation – the context of what we say – should be about Godly things. But what is more important is that we encounter God. Look at what the Psalmist says in Psalm ninety five:
“Come, let us worship and bow down; Let us kneel before the LORD our Maker.” Psalm 95:6 (NASV)
“Serve the LORD with gladness; Come before Him with joyful singing.” Psalm 100:2 (NASV)
Worship should be much more than a conversation about God – it should be an encounter with God. We should come before Him with gladness. We should bow down in His presence.
I heard the story of a pastor who went to visit an older member of his congregation – though rarely seen in church. The older man said, “For many years now I have taken to going to church less and less because I find so little there of what I hunger for most. It is a sense of seeing the presence of God.”
The pastor asked the man, “Do you think God has moved?”
After a long pause the older man replied, “No – but perhaps as I have gotten older – my eyesight has faded.”
Folks – there are times that we can miss things – even when they are in plain sight. God has promised you that if you are a Christian – “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” When is the last time that you encountered God? When is the last time you had a conversation with Him? When is the last time you heard Him speak to you? Jesus said:
"My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they shall never perish; and no one shall snatch them out of My hand.” John 10:27-28 (NASV)
God has not moved. He has not disappeared. He wants you to do more than just talk about Him – He wants you to encounter Him.