For church information contact Marv Walker ~ 706 468-6990

The Subject Of Worship John 4:24

I did a Bible search for the word "worship." There were over 190 verses containing the word.

As I read through them I could not find one use of the word "worship" where worship was to benefit, edify or spiritually enhance the worshiper. Every use of the word referred to honoring and praising God.

When we worship God we are honoring and praising Him.

I often see where denominational churches are advertising for people to fill praise teams, spiritual dancers, worship leaders and every other position under the sun to make their worship services more memorable, more rewarding, more fulfilling. Doesn't matter what you believe religiously as long as you can provide the service.

For who?

For those doing the hiring. To enhance the public, or human, worship experience.

I have known of "Christians" who have said, "I need more from worship. I feel more alive at ______."

They have turned worshiping God into entertainment. They have turned worshiping God into a service for hire. They have turned worshiping God into a job. They have turned worshiping God into hired labor. It is surrogate worshiping.

If not, why not?

22 You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth. John 4:22-24 (KJV)

Here we are told exactly how to worship God. We have to have the right spirit and we have to worship according to truth.

What is truth? John 17:17 says the Word of God, the scriptures, are the truth.

Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth. John 17:17 NKJV

16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:15-17 NKJV

In Numbers 20 we read where Moses is directed by God to SPEAK to the rock and water enough to meet the needs of the people will come forth. Instead, he STRIKES the rock twice and water comes forth.

God tells Moses that because he didn't do what God told him, God even called it disbelief, he would not be the one to lead the children of Israel into the promise land. Not only wasn't he going to lead the people into the long promised land, he wasn't even going in himself. Imagine, one minute you are God's chosen leader on the edge of a long dreamed for event and the next minute you're not simply because you did what God commanded in a way that was slightly different than what He commanded.

In an earlier similar situation, Exodus 17:6, God told Moses to strike the rock to bring forth water. "Behold, I will stand before thee there upon the rock in Horeb; and thou shalt smite the rock, and there shall come water out of it, that the people may drink. And Moses did so in the sight of the elders of Israel."

Now then, doesn't it seem reasonable that he might do the same thing again especially since God didn't say Moses couldn't strike the rock? In our human reasoning, yes, in God's mind, no. God expects us to do what He says, nothing more, nothing less.

This is a classic lesson in how God tells people what they should not do. He tells people what not to do by telling them what to do. By telling Moses to speak to the rock and it would bring forth water He eliminated all other means of bringing forth water from the rock. The Bible term for nothing more, nothing less is "turn not aside to the right hand, or to the left."

Here are some of the scriptures that warn us to do what God says and nothing more or nothing less...

(Deuteronomy 5:32 KJV) Ye shall observe to do therefore as the LORD your God hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left.

(Deuteronomy 17:11 KJV) According to the sentence of the law which they shall teach thee, and according to the judgment which they shall tell thee, thou shalt do: thou shalt not decline from the sentence which they shall shew thee, to the right hand, nor to the left.

Deuteronomy 17:20 KJV) That his heart be not lifted up above his brethren, and that he turn not aside from the commandment, to the right hand, or to the left: to the end that he may prolong his days in his kingdom, he, and his children, in the midst of Israel.

(Deuteronomy 28:14 KJV) And thou shalt not go aside from any of the words which I command thee this day, to the right hand, or to the left, to go after other gods to serve them.

(Joshua 1:7 KJV) Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper withersoever thou goest.

(Joshua 23:6 KJV) Be ye therefore very courageous to keep and to do all that is written in the book of the law of Moses, that ye turn not aside therefrom to the right hand or to the left;

How then can we be sure we go neither "to the right or to the left" in pleasing God? By relying only on God's Word rather than men and carefully examining it to see whether or not we are pleasing God or deceiving ourselves by believing men.

(2 Timothy 3:16-17 KJV) 16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

(2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 NIV) 10 and in every sort of evil that deceives those who are perishing. They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a powerful delusion so that they will believe the lie 12 and so that all will be condemned who have not believed the truth but have delighted in wickedness.

It is very important that we follow the scriptures and do what they say - nothing more and nothing less. There are many teachings that go directly against what the Bible says. Praying Jesus into your heart, addressing men as "Reverend" or "Father, praying to Mary and so on. Since these things are not found in the Bible they are "teachings of men" and are vain, empty or useless worship. Matthew 15:9, Mark 7:7.

Dear Reader, we invite you to compare your relationship, and ours, to the word of God. It is in both our best interests.

(2 Timothy 2:15 NIV) Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.

Or, as the King James Version says...

(2 Timothy 2:15 KJV) Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

We are always ready to study with you in person, by phone or email.

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