Last week in our blog, we were considering the how and the whom of worship as Jesus dialogued with the woman at the well in the 4th chapter of John’s gospel. This week I would like us to consider the why of worship. Why do we worship? Is it about us and making us feel good or is it about God and bringing our very best to present to Him? This a critical question in a consumer driven society like ours, as many today choose a place to worship based on their felt needs, their musical, or other personal preferences. But I heard an amazing analogy that made profound sense to me. Many today view attending church like they view attending the theater. They see themselves as the audience, God as the director and the preacher as the actor. But in actuality (and this is the reality of true worship) God is the audience, the preacher is the director and those attending are the actors.
Sometimes after a worship service, I hear people say “I didn’t get anything out of service today”. But the real question is not what you got out of the service but what did you give to the service. The why of worship is that we bring our lives as living sacrifices to present to Him. What we bring in the form of our financial giving and our heart giving is the why of worship. God is looking to see if we will respond to His Word and present ourselves to Him. David following his terrible sin with Bathsheba was able to continue worshipping God because he understood this truth. He wrote in Psalms 51:15-17
Worship is not about us, or our musical taste, or our Bible version preferences. It is about the living God of the universe who invites us into His presence and delights in meeting us there. One of my favorite Bible verses is in the 3rd chapter of Zephaniah where the prophet writes “The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save, He will take great delight in you, he will rejoice over you with singing” (v. 17). This picture of God delighting over us and singing (God singing over us) is amazing. That is not the result of self-centered worship, but a worship that is God centered. The why of worship is not “what do I get out of it” but how can I bring a pleasing offering to the Greatest Being in the Universe! I like what John Piper writes in his book “Desiring God” when he states “Strong affections for God rooted in truth are the bone and marrow of biblical worship” (pg. 82). We serve an awesome God, how will you be worshipping Him this coming Sunday?
Your Servant in Christ,
Pastor Rich Sivo