Bible scholars and theololgens use this method when studying scripture. Today, I want to look at the word ‘Worship’, so we find where that word was first mentioned in the Bible (i.e. the law of first mention), because this will give us insight into how we should view it, use it, think of it….
The word ‘Worship’ is first found in Genesis 22:3-10 in the story of Abraham and Isaac.
9 When they reached the place God had told him about, Abraham built an altar there and arranged the wood on it. He bound his son Isaac and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood.
10 Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son”.
You will notice perhaps that there is no mention of keyboards, or guitars, or drums….no choirs, no line up of attractive singers backing a lead singer.
Instead, in the fore ground of this picture, there is an altar, and the treasure of someone’s heart, about to be laid on it.
What do we learn from this?
Many things…..but as far as worship is concerned….we learn that worship is not so much what we do with our lips….
Worship has its focus on what we do with our lives.
Romans 12 tells us to offer our lives as a sacrifice. 1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Reminding ourselves of these things helps us move away from the easy tendency to see worship as something that happens in a half hour slot….at the beginning of a service…. It also takes our focus from musical performance and back towards God.
Only the Holy Spirit can search our hearts, and so cultivating, carving out, creating a space for this to happen is vital……wherever and whenever that is.
When worship becomes a time slot or a performance….it also becomes a chore….a means to an end….
Powerful worship lives in the moment….every moment….in the now….
Today if you here His voice…do not harden your hearts….
Powerful worship is creative…spontaneous….planned….still….noisy….messy….might involve paints, clay….a walk below the night sky…or a towel around our waists….
Whatever form it takes….true worship for it to touch God’s heart….and make Him smile, will always be in Spirit…and in truth….
Honest to God worship…