Genesis 22:5 English Standard Version
5 Then Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; I and the boy[a] will go over there and worship and come again to you.”
Psalm 29:2 English Standard Version
2 Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness.[a]
Luke 4:8 English Standard Version
8 And Jesus answered him, “It is written,
“‘You shall worship the Lord your God,
and him only shall you serve.’”
Romans 12:1 King James Version
1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
Romans 12:1 English Standard Version
1 I appeal to you therefore, brothers,[a] by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.[b]
Hebrews 12:28 English Standard Version
28 Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe,
What does it mean to worship?
The dictionary tells us that worship means the feeling or expression of reverence and adoration for our deity.
It includes praise, thanksgiving, reverence, adoration, love, glorification and magnification.
It is what God expects form His children.
Human kind has always had a tendency to worship something. Think of the native Americans and the totem pole. Unfortunately, throughout history, humankind has worshipped false gods and items of value. Remember the “golden calf” incident which happened right after the exodus from Egypt?
It didn’t take the Hebrew people very long to forget the miracles that God performed to get them out of Egypt. How could they forget the plagues that God sent? How could they so quickly forget the parting of the Red Sea so they could cross on dry land, with the water consuming the Egyptians that followed?
It didn’t take long to grow dissatisfied with Moses and to start worshipping a calf, molded out of gold.
They then expressed a desire to return to slavery in Egypt. Go figure. However, it is evident than mankind has a need to worship something.
It is what and who we worship that matters.
Worship is first mentioned in Genesis 22:5 where Abraham said that “he and the boy were going up the mountain to worship.”
Long before the exodus from Egypt and the Old Covenant of the Mosaic law, Abraham was found righteous in the eyes of God.
Abraham believed in God and was obedient to Him. There was no law, no rite of circumcision, no feasts to observe and no day of atonement.
Belief, faith and obedience reconciled Abraham with God.
This verse in Genesis is part of the scripture detailing a great test of Abraham’s faith, where he took his son Isaac to Mt. Moriah and was willing to offer his beloved son in obedience to God.
However, the first thing Abraham wanted to do was to offer his worship to God.
Despite the confusion he must be feeling and the emotions running through his brain, he wanted to worship God.
Most people including Christians would be prone to questioning God and showing disdain for Him if presented with the command that Abraham received.
I dare say most would not have been willing to be obedient, let alone have the desire to worship God.
Not Abraham. Because of his faith, he was obedient. He loved God and wanted first and foremost to worship his creator.
Let us consider worship. Our worship.
Do we truly worship? How much time do we spend in worship? These are questions that all Christians need to consider carefully.
There is public worship and private worship.
We worship publicly in church services. We worship privately in all other settings.
Regarding public worship, Christians spend an average of three hours in public worship.
There are 168 hours in the week and assuming we publicly worship God three of these hours, we are worshiping 1.79% of the time.
Now I have to believe that God wants more from us than 1.79% of our time in worship. And that is assuming that those three hours in public worship are all truly spent in worship.
Often times and I dare say most of the time, those three hours are not truly devoted to worship. In fact, there are usually as many words spoken about non spiritual things as are spoken in worship of God.
I have always known that I am more like a Quaker when it comes to public worship than anything else. The Quakers would quietly enter their sanctuary, with no words or thoughts on what happened last week or what was coming up in the week ahead. They would sit quietly, praying and meditating on the things of God. They will commune with God and will not speak until led to do so. Nothing of the world is to enter their minds.
At times I have taught that we should have a mechanism when we enter the sanctuary that removes all worldly thoughts from our minds. Such as touching an ear lobe and acting as if it is a delete key to remove everything non spiritual from our mind. Simply a “mechanism” to make us think about God and prompt us to remove all other thoughts from our mind.
I realize it is difficult to eliminate old habits. It takes practice, but most importantly it takes determination and focus.
No, God cannot be pleased with 1.79% of our time in worship. What about the other 98.21% of our time?
The sad thing is that many Christians believe that the 1.79%% is enough and all that is required.
Regarding private worship, this is what we do in the other 98.21% of our time.
In my life, I have found that I worship better in private settings. I feel the Spirit of God more often and commune with God more closely in private.
I’m not saying that we have to be in worship every minute of the 98.21% of time. What I do believe is that we must develop a “worshipful attitude” that becomes as normal a part of our life as breathing or eating.
Acknowledge God-Be Mindful of Him
A worshipful attitude. Being mindful of God at all times. Acknowledging God in all things that we see.
Paul told the Romans that humans are without excuse if they do not acknowledge God.
Romans 1:18-20 English Standard Version
18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world,[a] in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.
In addition to being mindful of God, our worshipful attitude will include being praiseful and thankful throughout the day. It includes our lifting up God in praise, glory and honor often each day. It includes expressing our love to God often for His love, mercy and grace offered to us.
It is not hard to learn to acknowledge God every hour. As we grow spiritually it becomes easier and then automatic.
The development of a worshipful attitude takes practice. It takes determination and focus. It takes the initiative of looking for God in all things, at all times. It involves remembering God at all times; being mindful of Him and acknowledging Him in all things.
One mechanism that I used was wearing a cross. I didn’t wear it out, for show, but wore it at home.
Every time I looked at it, I thought about Christ and what He went through for me. It helped me in the development of a worshipful attitude.
I must admit that it really shouldn’t have taken this “prompt”, but I used it to help make thinking of God and Christ often, a habit.
Then, I would focus each evening on how I did that day. An honest evaluation will tell you all you need to know. Then, determination to improve and fully develop this worshipful attitude.
Finally, the place you want to get to is where you will be enjoying and exhibiting a worshipful attitude, without even knowing it.
This is where God wants us to be.