Praise & Worship

Israel was chosen by God to offer him praises for all time:

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.   (1 Peter 2:9-10)

This is also true for us, the in-graphed branches of Israel. The Old Testament psalms were worship songs of the temple in many cases. Singing is so essential to the worship of God.

What type of songs do we choose? Variety is the key. The Apostle Paul wrote

but be filled with the Spirit, as you sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to one another, singing and making melody to the Lord in your hearts,   (Ephesians 5:18-19)

How exuberant should our worship be?

David danced before the Lord with all his might; David was girded with a linen ephod. So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the Lord with shouting and with the sound of the trumpet.

As the ark of the Lord came into the city of David, Michal daughter of Saul looked out of the window and saw King David leaping and dancing before the Lord, and she despised him in her heart.   (2 Samuel 6:14-16)

Would dancing be allowed in our churches today? Many of us get excited at sporting events. D not we have more to celebrate our team winning Jesus has won the victory for everyone who believes in him. By his cross, he has won for us salvation and eternal life in heaven.

What musical instruments should we use? The psalmist wrote:

Praise the Lord!
Praise God in his sanctuary;
praise him in his mighty firmament!
Praise him for his mighty deeds;
praise him according to his surpassing greatness!

Praise him with trumpet sound;
praise him with lute and harp!
Praise him with tambourine and dance;
praise him with strings and pipe!
Praise him with clanging cymbals;
praise him with loud clashing cymbals!
Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord!   (Psalm 150)

But we must understand that praise is not a peprally. Up beat tempos can lead to emotion, but emotion does not necessarily mean the presence of God. In fact, it can be a substitution for his presence. It may make us feel high, but is it lasting?

It may be that some churches use upbeat music to get the congregation in a mood for praise. Is it not better to simply praise God and allow his spirit to elevate our praise. God inhabits the praises of his people (Psalm 22:3).

We need to focus on God-centered worship rather than man-centered. God has done great things for us, that is true. That is because he is a great God. How great is he? Let us tell him so in our praise.

Which form of worship offers God the highest praise? Pentecostal, Evangelistic, Liturgical?

We remember when Jesus met the Samaritan woman at the well. She raised a similar issue:

Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you say that the place where people must worship is in Jerusalem.”  (John 4:20)

Jesus answered her:

You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. But the hour is coming and is now here when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such as these to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.”   (John 4:22-24)