How do we worship?
(taken from the teaching given by Warren Van Kampen at the Tehuillum School of Worship in Karachi, Pakistan; November 2017)
There are many methods and styles of worship in our churches these days. Do they all please the One we worship? The way to find out is to go back to the Bible and, when we do, we are amazed at all it has to say about ways to worship. And, while worshipping corporately with other Christians is important, I think you will find as you review these scriptural passages that God has designed worship to happen all day long in our hearts, relationships, and lives.
Let’s take a look:
“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.” – Psalm 100:4
Praise and verbal declarations
“Let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise.” – Hebrews 13:15
“And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” – Hebrews 13:16
“. . . the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each one had a harp and they were holding golden bowls full of incense which are the prayers of the saints.” – Revelation 5:8b
“He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear and put their trust in the Lord.” – Psalm 40:3
“So all Israel brought up the ark of the covenant of the Lord with shouts, with the sounding of rams’ horns and trumpets, and of cymbals, and the playing of lyres and harps.” – 1 Chronicles 15:28
“David danced before the Lord with all his might.” – 2 Samuel 6:14
“Clap your hands, all peoples! Shout to God with loud songs of joy!” – Psalm 47:1
Offerings and tithes
“ . . . bring an offering and come into his courts.” – Psalm 96:8b
Acts of obedience
“Present your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God. This is your spiritual act of worship.” – Romans 12:1
“Then he said, ‘Do not come near here; remove the sandals for your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.’” – Exodus 3:5
And, then, there are the postures of worship and there are many described in the Bible that seem to please God. They include everything from lifting our hands, to kneeling, to falling on our face in front of our holy God. Many worship when they walk or workout. Others as they fall asleep at night or before they even get out of bed in the morning.
Sometimes we get comfortable with one or two ways of worshiping God. But, let’s look back on the list we have just cited and see if our worship life can be revived and renewed by practicing ways of worship that stretch us a bit - and by realizing that every minute of our lives can be worship-filled, if we act out of reverence for God and for the honor of his name.