Summary: Second in a series looking at who benefits from our worship
The JOY of Worship – What Is Worship
Gladstone Baptist Church – 27/2/05 am
Last Sunday Night we started a series of 4 messages that is going to continue over both services next week. We have called the series “The JOY of Worship.” This is the first of 5 series we will be undertaking during the year to unpack our mission statement.
Who knows our Mission Statement?
“Through our WORSHIP, WITNESS and WORKS OF SERVICE, we aim to reach people with the good news of Jesus and lead them to MATURITY in the FAMILY of God”
The five purposes are contained in this mission statement and every couple of months, we will be taking 4 services to unpack one of these purposes a bit more and try to figure out how it works itself out in the life of our church
The first purpose we see in our mission statement is WORSHIP and so this is the topic for us over the next 3 weeks.
We’ve entitled this series “The JOY of Worship” for a specific reason. The word JOY is often used in Christian circles as an Acronym for Jesus, Others & Yourself. I want you to know straight off the bat that Jesus or God benefit from your worship. Other people benefit from your worship and You benefit from your Worship. JOY – Jesus, Others, Yourself.
So This is what we are going to be looking at over the next 3 weeks …
Last Sunday night we started by looking at : The JOY of Worship – What Others get from your worship.
We learnt that our worship benefits those in the church and those outside the church. Those inside the church are BUILT UP when we worship. It encourages them and edifies them. We actually found that when we worship, we actually enter into fellowship and ministry. When we worship God, we fulfil 2 of the other purposes for our lives. In actual fact, through this series we will see that when we worship God, we fulfil all the other purposes for which we were created. We fellowship and minister to those inside the church. We grow to be like Christ ourselves and we witness to those outside the church. We learnt last Sunday night that those outside the church should be BROUGHT IN by our worship. They should be attracted, challenged and led into a relationship with Jesus Christ – That is what witness is all about. Built up and Brought In – That’s how others benefit from your worship.
This morning : The JOY of Worship – What is Worship?
Next Sunday am : The JOY of Worship – What Jesus & God get from your worship.
Next Sunday pm : The JOY of Worship – What You get from your worship.
I hope that you’ll make a huge effort to try to make it to the remaining 3 messages because we really begin to grasp the importance of worship and what it means to worship JOY-fully. The first message is available on video or CD – see the sound desk operators after the service.
What is Worship?
Last Sunday night we briefly looked at the question of what is worship. But I want to consider that question in more depth this morning as a bit of a foundation to the rest of the messages you will hear.
Upon questioning the congregation last Sunday night, I got the feeling that some of the people there were beginning to understand what worship really is, but others were still caught up in the “traditional” church understanding.
2 Aspects of Biblical Worship
In the bible there are two aspects to our worship. There is a general usage of the word that characterises all we do in our whole life. Then there is a specific usage which focuses down on the act of giving Glory to God. Let’s briefly have a look at these two uses.
1) A Specific Activity of Giving Glory
Many times in scripture, Worship is linked to the act of giving glory.
Ps 29:1-2 Ascribe to the LORD, O mighty ones, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength. Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the splendor of his a holiness.
Ps 100:1-2 Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth. Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.
When we give glory to God, we RECOGNISE who He is. We recognise his awesome power and majesty. His strength, his beauty, his love, his compassion, his holiness. Giving Glory is a CONSCIOUS CHOICE we make. If we don’t recognise these things, all we are doing is parroting some meaningless words to a piece of music.
I get frustrated when people complain about the types of music that accompanies worship. That song is too old. That song is too fast. The music is too loud. The drums are out of time. I can’t worship to hymns. I don’t like that song. I can’t worship when a lady is leading the worship. Do you know what this tells me? It tells me that for you, worship is centred on you and not God. You are more concerned about what you like than what God likes. Worship should not be dependant on music style, speed or individuals involved. God likes all music if it gives him glory. Music styles is not the issue here. What is important is your ATTITUDE to God when the music is being played. Can you see past the off-key musician to recognise the aspects of God’s glory that the song expresses? Can you put aside your music preferences to appreciate the words of honour and glory being sung? God is not interested in the quality of the sound so much as the attitude of those making the sound. You may not be able to sing a note, but is your sing it to God out of a right heart, He’ll think you are an opera star.