In today’s Christian culture, it is totally acceptable to state the following. “Worship is music and as a player of music, you show your gratitude, your willingness to serve, your homage, and your love, not to mention, your devotions to the Lord God. “ in this brief article, I will attempt to define why I disagree with this concept so commonly thrown around today that we so carelessly use a word to describe worship.
I believe that first and foremost, when we discuss worship, it is vitally important for the church to have a unified understanding of this word. In other words, the church must have a solid understanding of this word worship and what all it entails.
When looking at the word worship, you see a few words which describe said word. The first word that I would like to take a look at is shachah as seen in Genesis chapter 22 verse five. This very well could be the first example in scripture of true worship. That aside, let us look at what this word means. First, let us look at the origin. This word is a Hebrew word. And it literally means to depress, i.e. prostrate (especially reflexive, in homage to royalty or God):—bow (self) down, crouch, fall down (flat), humbly beseech, do (make) obeisance, do reverence, make to stoop, worship.
This clearly does not entail music. This clearly Intel’s something much greater. Something much more in depth. If it were music, a lot of the time it would be coming from the outside in yet worship is clearly the opposite as it is from the inside out. The Psalmist put it best. Clean my heart oh God, see if there be any wicked thing in me. That prayer is obeisance on to God. Worship. Reverent fear. I believe this to be missing in Christian circles today. The more that I study this word worship, the more it makes my skin cringe when I hear people say, “welcome to our worship service.” By stating as such, you are placing God in a proverbial box. How does this in anyway edify the church? I hope that somebody has an answer because this has been going on for centuries. What a sad thing it is indeed that somebody who has never formally had a seminary education is the one called to find these flaws. There is absolutely nothing wrong with music in the congregation. Absolutely nothing at all. However, a specific liter designated by the church to lead worship with their musical instrument and or music directing abilities, that is not true worship.
Let us now move onto the second example of worship in scripture that I would like to turn your attention to today. The word that we are looking at comes from the New Testament. It is proskyneō. (meaning to kiss, like a dog licking his master's hand); to fawn or crouch to, i.e. (literally or figuratively) prostrate oneself in homage (do reverence to, adore):—worship.
Much more can be said concerning this topic. However, for the sake of time I will not list any more here. Needless to say, in the checklist of things to do to have a perfect “worship service “notice none of the things that we have to day in the churches around the world show up in either of these definitions of the word worship. That should make one scratch their head in wonderment. Why is none of the things that is defined here in these two definitions, why do they not show up in the modern church service of today? It is because over time, words and phrases lose their meaning, their value, and as a result, they are thrown around like seashells in a gail. There is absolutely nothing wrong with ensuring that the sound systems that are used today in our church services sounds good. There is absolutely nothing wrong with making sure that your musicians know their part. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having a Music service. However, there is something severely wrong when that music service has been turned into a ““ worship service. As I shared in this brief article, a brief review of these definitions shows the following. Number one. We are to pay homage, respect, have reverent fear, love, and cherish Christ. Number two. As stated previously, worship is from the inside out so doing what is stated in number one will show up in your daily lives. Number three. Doing the things as stated in number one will convict the church of their lack of love which would lead to authentic worshiping of Christ Jesus our Lord.
A lack of worship really boils down to this. A lack of love in the church. If the church would love, the church would worship. If the church loves and worships, then the church will see a massive explosion of people coming to know the Lord Jesus Christ. Allow me to turn your attention to the book of acts. Let us go to chapter 2 and let us examine what happened after Peter preached on the day of Pentecost. What do we see in versus 40 through 46? We see the church growing in numbers, giving to one another, loving, and worshiping. Until we stop using words that we clearly have no understanding of their true meaning, then the church will continue to remain stagnant. The church will continue to remain divided. And the church will continue to remain lukewarm and when Christ comes back, there will be many professing Christians who will in the end be left behind due to their lack of love, and their lack of authentic worship, showing obeisance to our Lord and our Savior, Jesus Christ, our soon coming Messiah.
Drop me an email or get in touch via Twitter should you wish to provide your thoughts.
In Christ's Service