Saturday, July 12, 2008

The Meaning of Worship

For this entry, I thought I'd pull out my seminary notes and discuss the biblical meaning of worship. In spite of all the discussion about worship in our churches it is often misunderstood simply because many Christians shoot from the hip rather than look to the Word of God for answers. Worship has been made to be so subjective that it is left up to individuals to define it for themselves. But what does God's Word tell us?

"You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve." - Matthew 4:10

I chose this passage because of two particular Greek words used in it. The word used for "serve" in this passage is "latreuo." It means "to serve" but has been translated as "worship" in certain passages. The most common word for worship is "proskuneo" which means to "kiss toward" as you would a king. So we have two different words used for worship with different meanings.

Both are important. They are not mutually exclusive. One is indicative of a lifestyle of worship through obedience while the other is all about actual moments of worship expressed through adoration. If I am to follow the command found in Matthew 4:10, I can't live a life dedicated to serving the Lord but neglect to outwardly express love for Him in moments of genuine worship. Neither can I experience the joy of expressive worship if my life is not lived in service to the Lord.

God deserves both our service and our hearts. May we live our lives in such a way that Sundays are the "Amen" to all that has gone before. Only then will our worship have any meaning.


Travis said...

Thanks for your comment on my blog, Mark! It came just at the right time. I am working on charts the studio tomorrow tracking an Easter worship musical. I was just thinking...DOES ANY OF THIS MATTER???!!!

Your comment will boost me through the long night of writing.

I hope all is well with you, your family and your ministry. Blessings to you!