Last Sunday I preached on how the Church is called to Worship God according to His Word, and why the way we prepare our hearts for worship is vital to our experience in worship. I made mention in the sermon of A. W. Tozer’s book, The Pursuit of God, and I thought I share some of the highlights from that book that didn’t make it into my message.
Worship is to feel in the heart and express in some appropriate manner a humbling but delightful sense of admiring awe. Worship will humble a person as nothing else can. The egotistical, self-important man cannot worship God any more than the arrogant devil can worship God. There must be humility in the heart before there can be worship.
Worship is no longer worship when it reflects the culture around us more than the Christ within us.
We enter the house dedicated to God, made out of bricks, linoleum and other stuff, and we say, “The Lord is in His holy temple; let all kneel before Him.” I personally enjoy starting a service that way occasionally. But it does not stop there. Come 9:00 A.M. Monday morning, if you do not walk into your office and say, “The Lord is in my office and all the world is silent before Him,” then you were not worshiping the Lord on Sunday. If you cannot worship Him on Monday, then you did not worship Him on Sunday. If you do not worship Him on Saturday, your worship Sunday is not authentic. Some people put God in a box we call the church building. God is not present in the church any more than He is present in your home. God is not here any more than He is in your factory or office. If God is not in your factory, if God is not in your store, if God is not in your office, then God is not in your church when you go there.
The total life, the whole man and woman, must worship God. Faith, love, obedience, loyalty, conduct and life – all of these are to worship God. If there is anything in you that does not worship God, then there is not anything in you that does worship God very well. If you departmentalize your life and let certain parts worship God, but other parts do not worship God, then you are not worshiping God as you should. It is a great delusion we fall into, the idea that in church or in the presence of death or in the midst of sublimity is the only setting for worship…
Worship pleasing to God saturates our whole being. There is no worship pleasing to God until there is nothing in me displeasing to God. I cannot departmentalize my life, worship God on Sunday and not worship Him on Monday. I cannot worship Him in my songs and displease Him in my business engagements. I cannot worship God in silence in the church on Sunday, to the sound of hymns, then go out the next day and be displeasing to Him in my activities. No worship is wholly pleasing to God until there is nothing in us that is displeasing to God.
Without Jesus Christ, there is no goodness, and so I do not apologize at all when I say that your worship has to be all-inclusive and take you all in. If you are not worshiping God in all your life, then you are not worshiping Him acceptably in any area of your life.
Tozer, A. W. The Purpose of Man: Designed to Worship.(Bethany House Pub., Bloomington, MN, 2009)
From the Pastor’s Desk – Here is a bit of the things I’ve been reading this week, or watching, that I thought I’d pass along.
Three Approaches to Ecclesiastes: Understanding how we are to read and interpret the Book of Ecclesiastes is one of the biggest challenges for any thoughtful reader. This essay presents three approaches to Ecclesiastes that I think are helpful.
Fleecing the Flock: Last week I posted a link to an article about PreacherNSneakers, a twitter account that showed pictures of Preachers wearing incredibly expensive and elaborate fashion. Along the same line, here is an article from the BBC on the scourge of “Prosperity Gospel” preachers and the people who give their money to support them. It is heartbreaking to see how some will use the name of Christ to benefit themselves and bring ruin to others.
Just for Fun
Solving the Rubik’s Cube: I’ve been working one of my sons to try to solve his Rubik’s cube. I’m down to maybe 10 minutes, but I don’t think I’ll ever be a speed cuber. This is simply amazing.
A Golden Performance: If you haven’t seen this amazing performance by Kodi Lee on America’s Got Talent, you really should watch it. I wasn’t crying when I watched it, I just had something in my eye.