|Worship: Self-surrender (Part 2 of 'Maintaining your relationship with God')|
|Written by David Charlton|
For I desire steadfast love and not sacrifice, the knowledge of God, rather than burnt offerings.
"With what shall I come before the LORD, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? 7 Will the LORD be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my first-born for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?" 8 He has showed you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?
Jesus said to her, "Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for such the Father seeks to worship him. 24 God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth."
Summary and Purpose
Summary: Why do we worship? What is supposed to happen as a result of worship? Do we worship to simply give thanks to God and feel good about ourselves or is it much more? What is worship?
Yes, we praise God during worship and this often leaves us feeling good but there’s much more to it than that. If you approach worship with the right attitude, the Holy Spirit will use the worship experience to transform you and make you more like Christ. You will not remain the same. The ultimate goal for worship is transformation.
God grew tired of the worship conducted by the ancient Israelites. They went through the motion of worship but continued in their sinful lives. There was no transformation taking place. They approached worship with the wrong attitude.
Are we like the ancient Israelites? Do we approach worship with the wrong attitude? Do we just go through the motions every Sunday? Are our worship services a time of transformation? Do we approach worship with the right attitude? What is the right attitude?
Jesus described the right attitude when he said, “…the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for such the Father seeks to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth." Worshipping in ‘spirit & truth’ happens when we surrender to the Holy Spirit and to Jesus & his teachings. The ‘Spirit’ refers to the Holy Spirit and the ‘truth’ refers to Jesus and what He teaches. So, the right attitude is an attitude of surrender. When we surrender to the Holy Spirit and the teachings of Jesus, the Holy Spirit can then work on our sinful hearts and make us more like Christ.
So, how is your worship experience? Do you sense God’s presence? Are you being changed in some way? If you answer no to these questions, perhaps you need to more fully surrender to the Holy Spirit and teachings of Jesus.
Purpose: To help the congregation experience a more fulfilling worship experience.
I. Introduction: My last year of wrestling and just going through the motions
A. Have you ever been involved in some type of activity or event
B. This describes me during my last year of wrestling for the Virginia Military Institute
C. The same thing that happened to me can happen to us with worship. It happened
to the ancient Israelites.
II. The ancient Israelites simply went through the motions of worship
A. Consider Hosea 6:6 and Micah 6:6-8
B. Worship is meaningless if it doesn’t result in the transformation of the people
C. The main outcome of worship: Transformation
III. Transformation as the main outcome of worship
A. Yes, in worship we…
B. As a result of worship, we should expect to be changed.
C. If people are not changed as a result of our worship services, we should…
D. Worship will result in the transformation of the participants if we approach worship
with the right attitude.
IV. The right attitude towards worship
A. Jesus explained the right attitude when He said, “…the true worshipers will
worship the Father in spirit and truth, for such the Father seeks to worship him. 24
God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth." (John
B. Worshipping in ‘spirit and truth’
V. What it looks like when we approach worship with an attitude of self-surrender
A. You prefer the contemporary (9AM) service but you oversleep and miss that
B. There are two versions of the doxology. You prefer one over the other.
The choir, however, keeps playing the version you don’t care for.
C. A few years ago, you had a bad experience with a Baptist church. Some
members of that church treated you very unkindly. While on vacation your Baptist
mother-in-law invites you and your family to attend church with her.
A. How is your worship experience? Do you sense God’s presence? Are you being
Changed? Are you becoming more like Christ? Are you better able to love God,
yourself and others as a result of worship?
B. If you answer no to these questions, perhaps you need to more fully surrender to
the Holy Spirit and teachings of Jesus.
C. This attitude of surrender will carry over to the rest of the week.
D. So, have you surrendered the ‘self’ to God lately?