Summary: Why we worship as we do and what fruit it bears.
17, February 2002
Dakota Community Church
The Winners Worship
1 Cor. 9:25
Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.
Ill. If you were going to a sporting event, or concert what would be the best seats? If you were going to a basketball game it would be center court front row. If it were football it would be the 50-yard line, front row. If it were a concert it would be center stage, front row. But, if it were Sunday morning church service, it wouldn’t be the front pew. The back pews always fill up before the front pews in church. The best seats in church always seem to be near the back.
How do we get a rush seating mindset in church? – Fire!
A. WHY DO WE WORSHIP AS WE DO?
Gordon Dahl said, “Most middle-class Americans tend to worship their work, work at their play, and play at their worship.”
Gene Mims in Kingdom Principles for Church Growth said, “The purpose of worship is to come before the Lord in obedience to praise Him, to hear from Him, to confess to Him, and to commit our lives to Him. Every worship service is to be an encounter with the Lord, transcending our feelings, desires, and even our abilities to perform.”
1. Because the Bible is the basis for our faith – not tradition.
He replied, "Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you hypocrites; as it is written: "`These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.
They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men.’
You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men."
And he said to them: "You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions!
When tradition rules:
- United Church homosexuality issue.
- Catholic Church Pope, Celibacy, Mary, confessional
Two young newlyweds were preparing to enjoy their first baked ham dinner in their new apartment. After unwrapping the meat and setting it on the cutting board, the wife chopped off both ends of the ham with a knife and tossed the two small ends in the garbage can.
"Wait a minute," said the mystified husband. "Why did you do that? Why did you just cut off the ends of the ham and throw them away?"
"I don’t know. My mother always did," answered the wife. "Maybe it helps bring out the flavor."
Unsatisfied with this answer, the husband called his mother-in-law. "Can you tell me why you cut the two ends off a ham before you cook it?"
"Well," said the mother, "I’m not really sure why. That’s just the way my mother did her ham, and it was always delicious."
As soon as he hung up he called his wife’s grandmother. "Grandma, we have an important question for you. Can you tell us why you cut the ends off a ham before you cook it?"
"Oh, my yes, dear," answered Grandma in her quiet, thin voice. "I cut the ends of the ham off so it would fit in my pan."
2. Because people instinctively know how to give praise and worship.
When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:
"Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!" "Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!"
Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, "Teacher, rebuke your disciples!"
"I tell you," he replied, "if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out."
When they first lived there, they did not worship the LORD; so he sent lions among them and they killed some of the people.
QUOTE FROM AN UNKNOWN SOURCE: "Praise is a natural and necessary response to fully enjoy the object that is praised. For example, when watching a football game on television, it is a natural response to praise a tremendous play. To shout WOW! After an acrobatic catch in the end zone is not only natural, but necessary to enjoy the spectacular play. If you do not believe that it is necessary, the next time you watch a football game try to not express yourself at all. You will quickly find that you do not enjoy the action nearly as much as you do when you have the freedom to express yourself in praise and excitement!"
NOW, temper that shouting concept with the fact that although our God is an awesome God, He is also a holy God who demands reverence.