Why worship and not praise? Can praise not do as good a job or even better than our worship? To another fellow believer one may ask yet another question as this, Did you see how God moved in the worship service at church today? Such questions and logical reasoning are legitimate and a good start to explore deeper the subject title of discussion, “The Journey To Your Restoration ~ The Fulfilment Is In Your Worship.” As a matter of fact, the Christian way touches on worship and praise. But that is all these questions and reasoning are, a place to begin, especially that the church worship and praise is always there. It is actually woven into the fabric of our lives and one which I believe is often taken for granted.
It alludes to praise as being in the outer court of God’s throne which anyone is capable of doing. Even the unbeliever and the rocks for that matter with the evidence of, breaking open of prison doors, breaking of chains and fetters of iron to set captives free. It gives a false sense of security that there is no need for an ongoing personal intimate relationship with God and that whenever one needs a breakthrough in his or her life, then praise is what is required. On the other hand, worship which is said to get one into the inner courts of God’s throne, the impression is that it is reserved only for a specific category of believers. But nothing could be further from the truth within those notions.
So what then is true worship? Is it entirely possible that continually giving God the very basic form of worship will get His undivided attention? Are we really meeting God’s full requirements with respect to true worship? If no, is it possible then that our understanding of true worship is far too narrow? Aside from Him being our Creator, why does God want us to worship Him? God is calling us all back to a heart of true worship, He is seeking true worshippers! The hour cometh He says when the Father seek such who will worship Him in spirit and in truth. Not just out of any heart, but worship that comes out of the depth of ones spirit and soul that is true, sincere and pure.
What is Worship?
Except within the context of a passage of scripture, the Bible never clearly defines it, yet understanding what it is, is crucial to our daily living. It is a matter of life and death for us. God has even taken it a step further and is measuring His temple and its alter to see who worships there in spirit and in truth. (Revelation 11: 1-2) It tells us therefore that the understanding or lack thereof of worship and what God truly requires of us, is entirely up to each individual, and not God. To each his own that we work out our own salvation with fear and trembling!
We are the temple of God, so we are being measured by God to see if we are truly worshipping Him or not. Jesus says worshippers draw nigh to Him and worship Him in vain with their mouths when their heart is far from Him. (Matthew 15: 8) Indeed we are to exercise great caution on our journey to whom we give worship ~ worship is considered as intimacy with God, yet Jesus clearly made a point, rather a rebuke to the worship that was being presented to the Father. Satan even tried to get Jesus to worship him instead of His Father, but Jesus angrily replied, “Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.(Matthew 4:10)
Grammatically though, worship can be either a verb or noun. The thesaurus gives synonyms such as adulate, honour, glorify, edify, deify to mean worship. The Webster’s Dictionary, its verb form includes such synonyms as “esteem,” “exalt,” “revere,” and “respect.” While as a noun, it can encompass adoration, veneration, devotion, supplication and invocation. The Collier’s Dictionary, its noun form includes meaning such as, reverence or devotion for a deity; religious homage or veneration; extreme devotion or intense love or admiration of any kind.
The Vine’s Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words gives the Greek word proskuneo (from pros, “towards,” and kuneo, “to kiss”) as the most frequent word in verb form rendered to mean “worship.” It is to make obeisance or to do reverence or, an act of homage either to God eg. (Mat.4:10; John 4:21-24; 1 Cor.14:25; Rev. 4:10; 5:14; 7:11; 22:9) OR to Christ eg.(Mat.2:2; 8:2; 9:18; 14:33….John 9:38; Heb.1:6). In the Old Testament the Hebrew word for “worship” is shachah, pronounced as sha-kha. The word is translated into the English version to mean, “to bow down,” “obeisance,” “reverence,” “fall down,” “themselves” (prostrate), (make to) “stoop,” “crouch.”
In summary, worship then, is reverencing God, adoring Him, honouring and bowing down prostrate before Him. It is to have extreme devotion, an intense love and adoration reserved for Him alone. It is more a thing of the heart and mind than a physical action. But much deeper than that, our obedience to God is considered to be the highest form of worship that we give to Him.
Part 2 of this discussion will be presented at which time the topic will be explored even deeper to look at practical biblical examples in more detail and to offer some suggestions on how to improve our worship God. It is my prayer also that you have been blessed by the word today and you are empowered to go forth to make that difference and to impact the lives of those around you!
God bless you!