Sunday, January 16, 2011

Passionate Worship

How passionate is your worship? How deliberate and comprehensive is your adoration of God? Does worship cost you anything?

In I Chronicles 15:1-16:3, David's attempt to return the ark of God from the home of Obed-edom to Jerusalem gives many helpful insights about personal and corporate worship:

1. Preparation: how prepared are you to worship God? In I Chron. 15:1-3 David uses a three-month interval before the ark arrives in Jerusalem to make needed preparations. Worship preparation shows shows its importance and reveals our awe and reverence for God. What preparations do you undertake before gathering with other believers?

2. Organization: How organized is our worship? Is it marked with chaos? Preparation and planning fosters clarity and limits chaos. Nothing is more distracting than worship that lacks purpose. David organized the Levites into three main divisions, each having a specific responsibility (I Chronicles. 15: 4-10, 15:17-24).

3. Consecration: How spiritually prepared are you to worship God? The priests were required to consecrate themselves for the task of carrying the ark of the Lord. The act of consecration means to set aside any and everything that is profane in order to take on the important task of worship. Since God is holy, his worshipers come before him with clean hands and pure hearts (Psalm 24: 3-4).

4. Celebration: Worship is a passionate celebration of the glory and greatness of God. In In Chronicles 15: 25-6:3, there is rejoicing, dancing, joy, festive music, sacrifice, singing, shouting, playing of instruments. Unfortunately, Michal, David's wife resented his dancing and rejoicing; maybe she thought his exuberance was unbecoming for a king.

Compare this expression of passionate worship with worship in many north American churches. Is your worship of God routine and dry, focused on self, or is it passionate,  and Christ centered?

How to engage in passionate worship

  • Keep the focus on the glory of God not the glory of our needs and wants
  • Pray for all who will lead worship
  • For Sunday worship, read Scripture and pray for a humble and receptive heart before each gathering
  • Worship each day. After all, worship is not just on Sunday. We are called to worship and glorify God in all that we do (Colossians 3: 16-17).

Read through the bible in 2011

Psalm 14: 1-7
Genesis 15: 1-21
I Chronicles 15:1-16:3

Luke 9: 1-50