Steve Ellison: Shall We Worship?

Saturday, August 26, 2017

The God of the Bible has demanded our worship.  Others have argued that if God did not demand our worship, that would be wrong of Him. That is because His omnipresence, omniscience, sovereignty, absolute truthfulness, faithfulness, goodness and majesty make Him absolutely worthy of our worship.  Not demanding it would be a denial of His own nature. It is telling that our word “worship” is a contraction of the old English word “worthship”.

  Donald Whitney, in his book on spiritual disciplines, has correctly identified a real problem in modern America, “Modern man worships his work, works at his play, and plays at his worship”.  That statement is worth reading over and over again and pondering at length. 

Worship is both a duty and a privilege.  We should engage in private worship and in public worship.  If we do not worship privately, it is highly doubtful if we will worship corporately.  In fact some have argued that it is not possible to worship corporately if one has not already worshiped privately.  Christianity is not an isolationist religion.  When a person is “saved”, brought into the Kingdom of God, born again, he or she is adopted into God’s family.  That is not a position of isolation.  Ephesians 2 describes the church as both a body and a household. First Corinthians 12 describes the church as a building with many stones.  In short, there are no Lone Ranger Christians. The Bible tells us that God adds those who are being saved to the church.  Hebrews 10 tells us not to forsake going to church.  Private and corporate worship are both needed.

It seems to me that my worship will be in direct proportion to how well I see God.  The clearer my view of God is, the better I will worship Him.  If I get a clear picture of the nature and character of God, I will be moved to worship.  I will let the cares and desires of the temporal fade into the background and I will focus more intentionally and more purposefully on the God whom I attempt to worship.  If I truly see the depths of my own depravity against the background of a holy and righteous God who created me and bought me back out of rebellion with a terrible and a wonderful price, I cannot help but be moved to authentic worship.

What is true worship?  Jesus told the Samaritan woman at the well, “The true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.  God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." (John 4:23-24, NASU)  Jesus did not repeat Himself just to have something to say.  He wanted the Samaritan woman and me and you to get this fact.  We must worship God in “spirit” and in “truth”.   We will only be able to truly worship when the Holy Spirit has taken up residence in us, i.e. when we have been born again.  We must also worship in truth.  We must worship God as He has revealed Himself in the Bible.  Very often we fall into the trap of worshiping a god of our own making.  We attempt to worship God as we would like for Him to be.  Spirit without Truth is mushy, soft, misguided, and dangerous.  Truth without Spirit is dead, cold, ritualistic, and legalistic.

Live throughout the week as an heir of the kingdom, listening for the Master’s voice, obeying.  Come to church on Sunday, expecting to hear from God, expecting God to display His glory.  I think He will.



The Union To Host Guitar Clinic Featuring Songwriter And Guitarist, James Duke

James Duke has toured around the world with Jesus Culture and with many recording artists including Kim Walker- Smith and John Mark McMillian. On Tuesday, July 24, he will make a stop in the Scenic City to host a Guitar Clinic. The clinic will be held at 5 p.m. at the Chattanooga House of Prayer, 3912 Dayton Blvd. in Red Bank.  Registration is $10 and can be completed ... (click for more)

Lee Announces Fultz As New Campus Pastor

Rob Fultz, a 2001 Lee alumnus, has been appointed the new campus pastor for Lee University, effective next month.   “We are fortunate to welcome Rob back to Lee as our new campus pastor,” said Dr. Mike Hayes, vice president for student development at Lee. “He brings a wealth of church leadership experiences and the caring heart of a pastor to the role.”   Pastor ... (click for more)

Former Dalton High School Teacher Pleads Guilty, Sentenced To 2 Years

Jesse Randall Davidson, 53, formerly of 5219 Hwy 11, Rising Fawn, and formerly a teacher at Dalton High School, entered a guilty plea to criminal damage to property in the first degree, carrying a weapon within a school safety zone and disrupting the operation of a public school.  He was sentenced to serve two years in prison followed by eight years on probation on the first ... (click for more)

Firefighters Battle 2-Alarm Fire On Workman Road Tuesday Morning

Chattanooga firefighters were dispatched at 6:03 a.m. on Tuesday, to a commercial fire at 400 Workman Road. When the first firefighters arrived on the scene, flames were shooting through the roof and the request was immediately made for a second alarm response. The flames could be seen for miles as a total of 13 fire companies rushed to the scene. The large, two-story ... (click for more)

Here We Go Again With The Same Cummings Highway, 12th Street Flooding - And Response (2)

Here we go again with the same pitiful news reports about the Cummings Highway Interstate interchange with I-24 - Flooding yet again after a heavy rain.  TDOT is derelict in not having repaired this years ago.  How hard is it to get some excavators out there to dig up the collapsed drainage pipes which TDOT says are the cause of the flooding and replace them with ... (click for more)

Deal With The Graffiti Vandals

I travel to other neat old cities and don't see nearly the graffiti vandalism as in Chattanooga. Why do we allow one or two or three repeat vandals to mar our venerable Walnut Street Bridge, the pillars to the Holmberg Bridge, the remodeled Chief John Ross Market Street Bridge, the walls along our multi-million-dollar Riverwalk, our sidewalks, street signs and our old limestone ... (click for more)