Psalms 95; 97

The Worthiness of Worship.

“Come, let us worship and bow down. Let us kneel before the LORD our maker, for he is our God. We are the people he watches over, the sheep under his care. Oh, that you would listen to his voice today!” ­– Psalm 95:6-7 NLT

So how’s your worship today? What’s your view of God like even as you read this? For many of us, worship has become a ritual we practice on Sundays. It is an activity we participate in one day a week, but even then it may not be what the Bible refers to as worship. We may sing songs, pray together, listen to a a message from God’s Word, and even tithe, but all the while never really worship God. Because worship is more about an attitude than an action. Singing, praising, giving, and listening to God’s Word being taught are anything but worshipful, if we do them with a wrong attitude or a heart that is far from God. If we fail to give Him the attention and reverence He deserves, He will fail to see our efforts as worshipful.

The authors of today’s two Psalms understood the concept of worship. It is all about recognizing God’s worth – His worthiness to receive our praise, attention, dependence, and expressions of love and thanksgiving. For the writer of Psalm 95, worship is a reaction to the greatness of God. He says, “Come, let us sing to the LORD! Let us give a joyous shout to the rock of our salvation! Let us come before him with thanksgiving. Let us sing him psalms of praise. For the LORD is a great God, the great King above all gods” (Psalm 95:1-3 NLT). He is a great God. He is a great King. He is unique and the only true God. This is a recognition of what is often called God’s transcendence – His otherness. He is nothing like us. He is so far beyond us, it is even hard for us to comprehend. That is why the Psalmist tended to see God in nature, in the thunder and lightning, the mountains, storms, and majestic splendor of the earth. They were reminders of the majesty and power of God. The greatness of nature reminded him of the greatness of God – the one who created it all.

The Psalmist invites us to bow down, kneel down, and worship before God. He reminds us that we have been created by the same God who created all we see. But not only is He our maker, He has chosen to be our shepherd. He has made us His people. We belong to Him. Like the Israelites of the Old Testament, we as believers have been chosen by God and made His special people. We have His favor. We have His protection. We have His promise of eternal life. So why wouldn’t we come before Him with thanksgiving, joy, praise, and a certain degree of respect and awe – each and every day of our lives?

Worship is a full-time job. It is something we need to practice every day. In fact, it has been said, that anything we do that brings pleasure to God is an act of worship. When we live our daily lives in submission to His will, we are worshiping Him. When we stop and thank Him for a meal, we are worshiping Him. When we recognize His creative handiwork in a sunrise or sunset, we are worshiping Him. When we gladly serve those He has placed in our lives, we are worshiping Him. Again, worship is more about attitude than anything else. “May all who are godly be happy in the LORD and praise his holy name!” (Psalms 97:12 NLT). Do we find joy in the Lord? Does He satisfy us? Even when we have little, are we able to recognize that we have a lot in the Lord? That is worship. But probably the greatest form of worship is obedience – doing what God has told us to do in His Word. Do we obey Him? Do we listen to what He has told us to do and do it? To come and sing praises on Sunday, then go our merry way and do our own will the rest of the week is not worship. True worship is about submission and obedience. It is acknowledging God’s greatness and willingly listening to His what He as our creator asks us to do. We show His worthiness by obeying Him. “Oh, that you would listen to His voice today?” (Psalm 95:7 NLT).

Father, may I learn to worship You more. May I learn to recognize Your greatness in the world around me. Open my eyes so that I might see You more clearly and more often. And give me the strength and determination to obey You. An obedient heart is a worshipful heart. Amen

Ken Miller
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men

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