Psalms is a beautiful and potent book. It contains soaring praise and horrible confessions. It spurs individuals and the whole nation to pure worship. Yet it also condemns the behavior of God’s people. Psalms provide instruction, rebuke and encouragement. In other words, it defines, inspires and safeguards worship. All who accept its principles nurture their relationship with God. All who ignore its truth seek God on their own terms, an attitude that will lead to destruction. What is worship? In the Old Testament it is bowing before the King of kings and the Lord of lords. It is giving God the King his due, his due in praise, his due in service, his due in confession. Worship is bowing before a king. It is about who he is, it is not about who we are. By confessing our sin and enjoying God’s forgiveness, we worship. By lamenting our pain, but expecting Yahweh to help us, we worship. By thanking God properly and by sharing our faith with the next generation, we worship. By keeping God’s word and waiting for our final redemption, we worship. All of these actions honor God. They demonstrate our commitment and love for the Lord. In short, they give glory to God, glory that he deserves. These days worship is being defined in many ways. But only worship that begins and ends and has its goal in God is Biblical worship. Only worship that stresses the importance of relationship with God through the Messiah and stresses that our walk with God is defined by the Word of God, and we who accept the Word of God will then live out the ways of God in our life. Only this sort of worship is actual worship. Singing is not worship. Dancing is not worship. Exuberance is not worship. These things may go alongside worship, but the truth is, it is only the person who bows before the Lord and goes from his presence to serve the Lord has truly worshiped.
Much Love Tom