Summary: This message explores the value of real worship.
Why are we here?… Worship
Worship. This word is used 331 times in the Bible. From Genesis, the first book of the Bible, to Revelation, the last book, we are called to worship. Worship is the theme of this book. From Genesis chapter 17 where
Genesis 17:17 (TLB)
17 Abraham threw himself down in worship before the Lord
to Revelation 22:9 the last chapter on the Bible where we are told,
Worship the Lord alone.
Worship is the all consuming subject.
This should raise the question what is worship? Or a better question might be what do you expect from worship? Expectation may vary, as we see in this clip from Willow Creek church.
(Video Clip “Pulpit Talk”)
When you come to church do you expect the sominex sermon, or maybe the terminex sermon. Or many what you are looking for is the feel good sermon.
We can all relate to these types of messages, but what should you expect when you come to worship celebration on Sunday.
I believe, first worship should bring you into the presence of God.
Two boys were throwing rocks at the windows of a church and got caught red-handed.
The pastor marched them into the church office with the intention of making this a teaching moment.
Before throwing the rocks, the boys had agreed, if they were caught, they would not say a word.
The pastor asked, “Boy, do you know where God is?”
The boys said nothing.
The pastor continued, “Boy where is God?”
A third time, this time with more force, he said, “Boy, where is God?”
Still they remained silent.
The Pastor gave them a lecture about throwing rocks and let them go.
After they were outside away from the pastor, the one boy said to the other, “This church done lost God, and they think we had something to do with it.”
The truth is many churches today have, “done lost God, and we the people have had something to do with it.”
I was pleased yesterday as the Hale family gathered in our fellowship hall to have one of them say, this church was different, you could feel the spirit of God when you come through the door. That is what worship is all about, it is coming into the presence of God.
Moses experienced the presence of God. Listen to what happened to him.
Exodus 34:29 (TLB)
29Moses didn’t realize as he came back down the mountain with the tablets that his face glowed from being in the presence of God.
There is a special glow about the people who have been in the presence of God.
I have to mention how often the work of our praise team has been rewarded by bringing us into the presence of God. As we are singing together, you can feel a special moving of God spirit. Their come up here every Sunday and offer their best up to God, they say it is an offer to an audience of one.
What a privilege it is to pastor a church that understands worship is about moving into the presence of God.
First, worship should take us into the presence of God.
Second, worship should help you hear from God. Who here has not cried out with the psalmist,
Psalm 80:1 (TLB)
1O Shepherd of Israel who leads Israel like a flock; O God enthroned above the Guardian Angels, bend down your ear and listen as I plead. Display your power and radiant glory.
Every Sunday hundreds of thousands of ministers across America will preach over a billion words in sermons to millions of Christians. Each one of these millions of Christian came for one reason, and one reason only, to hear a word from God.
We so long for a word from God.
When you are having marriage problems, you want to hear God remind you, “love is patient. Love is kind. Love never ends.”
When your children have refused to obey you, and a week seems like an eternity. Just this week I have had two people ask me if we could start a small group for parents of teenagers. These parents want and need the support of other parents as they face this difficult time. When your kids refuse to obey and still you gentle try to lead them, you come hoping to hear the encouraging words, “Raise up a child in the way he shall go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
When our nation has been shaken by scandals. When the news blares forth that another bombing has cost lives in the Middle East. When we, as Americans, wait for the terrorism that has filled our world to find our airports and restaurants. Then we come once again into the house of God hoping to God speak to us. Maybe this week He will say to us, “Fear not my little children, for it is the fathers good pleasure to give you the kingdom.”