The Lost Act of Worship
You may not believe that one of the lost act(s) in the church today is worship, the word praise is mostly followed by worship (praises and worship). I believe we give more praises than worship to God, although it is not bad because praises looks good on God. The act of worship is lost, you can stand and praise God but in churches today we do not prostrate to worship God but rather we sit down and claim to worship God. Prayer is the pre-occupation for our needs, praise is the pre-occupation for our blessings but worship is the pre-occupation with God. The book of revelation chapter 7 verses 11 says; ‘And all the angels stood round about the throne and about the elders and the four beasts and fell before the throne on their faces and worshipped God.’ this is to tell us that the standard way to worship is to fall down (Prostrate / bow) before God and worship Him, I thank God for this marvellous verse of the scripture which has given us the standard of worship. The four beasts, the host of angels and the saints of the Lord in heaven fall down to worship God, they may stand while singing praises but never do they stand to worship God. In Heaven, our occupation is worship, should we carry on with this substandard attitude of us here on earth to eternity? No. In the scripture, never have I read about a man that has a walking relationship with God stood and worshipped God, they always make haste and bow their faces to the ground to worship God. When God called Moses from the burning bush, Moses was afraid to look upon God and he hid his face.
We claim to worship God while standing or sitting, but Moses hid his face from God, that means we have no worship with God. No man can withstand the brightness of God, His majesty, honour and power, who can stand before Him? Lest he or she will die after such encounter ‘Exodus chapter 33 verses 20 emphasis added. Moses could not see the face of God when he asked God to show him His glory; God told him He will not show him His face. No man has ever seen His face and lived, but we claim we worship God standing gazing into His Holiness.
I am not insinuating you cannot stand to praise God but worship cannot be effective if you sit down because if you believe you are in the presence of God which none of God’s chosen men in the scripture stood before God to worship, you have not started your worship to God. We cannot sit before God to worship but if we prostrate or bow ourselves with our faces to the earth, we accord the necessary reverence to His Holy name. In the book of Revelation chapter 1 verses 13 to 17; John the beloved Apostle said.
Verse 13; ‘and in the midst of the seven candle sticks, one like the Son of man clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the breasts with a golden girdle.’ Verse 14; ‘His head and His hairs were white like wool, as white as snow and His eyes were as a flame of fire, Verse 15; ‘And His feet like to fine brass, as if they burned in a furnace; and His voice as sound of many waters. Verse 16; ‘and He had in His right hand seven stars; and out of His mouth went a sharp two-edged sword; and His countenance was as the sun shines in his strength.
Verse 17; ‘and when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead. And He laid His right hand upon me, saying to me Fear not; I am the First and the Last.’ Is this the God we sit down to worship? If John who leaned on the breasts of Jesus during the last supper, heard the divine heartbeat of Jesus and walked with Him for three years but when he saw Jesus in His glory and awesome majesty, he fell at his feet as dead. What will you and I do when we will see Jesus?
A man that falls before God in worship cannot bow his knee to sin or compromise in any circumstance. Standing before God you stand in every circumstances of life but bowing before God to worship, you will never bow your knees to anything else in this life. If you see a man who falls before God in worship or any church that worship God like in the time of King Jehoshaphat in 2nd chronicles chapter 20, he will not leave the presence of God a defeated man like-wise the church.
We are too busy to worship God, too busy to make out time to prostrate before him. May be we think our tithes and offerings is what God needs from us, a gentle reminder; the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness therefore, the world and they that dwell therein; ‘Psalm chapter 24 verses 1’. If God wants to take away the whole possession of yours which you give Him 10% as if He is hungry and wants food, He will do it, but He is merciful and slow to anger. You may be perfect in bringing your tithes and offerings as and when due, but you do not make out time to worship God, He is not a hungry God, if you can tithe your income, tithe also your time every day and out of the 24 hours in a day, 10% is 2 hours 24 minutes, how many minutes do you give God as your tithe in form of time?. You may think God needs food, but remember; He is not a man neither He is a human made by a man. I do not want to start writing about the co-existence of God because I cannot exhaust it. God can never be fully explained but He can be experienced and I believe a very sure way to experience God is by worship. Prayer is the way we communicate with God, whether it is voiced out or said in your mind, but the most important thing about prayer is; did you touch Heaven after the prayers? The act of worship has been recorded in different Bible chapters and verses; in other hand, I mean the actions people took to worship God in the scripture which includes; bowing, falling, prostrating, etc.
I will quickly go through the book of 2nd Chronicles chapter 7, when King Solomon finished praying in the house of the Lord and fire came down from Heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifice and the glory of the Lord filled the house, in verse 3; when the children of Israel saw how the fire came down and the glory of Lord in the house, they bowed themselves with their faces to the ground upon the pavement and worshipped and praised the Lord, saying; For He is good; for His mercy endures forever.’
Who can withstand the glory of God in His awesomeness, in His beauty and in His holiness? Who can stand before God? You cannot stand before God if you do not have a glorified mind and a glorified body. Many at times, I wonder what people take God for, if they take God as God, why do they pay huge homage to a King or a president who is a man but regard the Most High as nothing, this is because we do not know God’s glory and majesty. If you know the awesome beauty of God and His thrilling majesty, you will then understand that God is not a man but a Supreme Being. In the book of Exodus chapter 20 verses 18 to 20; when the children of Israel saw the glory of God they all feared and trembled at the presence of God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, but God came that He may prove (test) them, and His fear (reverence) may be before their faces, that they sin not, emphasis added. We have lost the fear of God and that is why we could not worship before His awesome presence. If you lose the fear of God, it is a big blow to you by the adversary, because the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom, a wise man is the person who reverence God in his life and shuns evil. Who shall ascend into hill of the Lord? Or who shall stand in His Holy place the psalmist asked in Psalms 24 verses 3 and 4, he gave answers to the questions; (1) he that has clean hands and (2) a pure heart; who has not lifted up his soul to vanity nor sworn deceitfully.
How can you ascend into the hill of the Lord when you have read from the scriptures the criteria that will qualify you, you have not observed any of the mentioned criteria, if you keep some but fail one you are guilty of all. The presence of the Lord cannot be dared by unclean person both in thought and in deeds. The clean hands above signify your attitude with the people of the world, your relationships with the believers and unbelievers, in your business and other-wise. People believe they can put their hands on the Hands of He that walked on water. If your hands are unclean, if your hands had been soiled with pride, lust and love of money, you cannot join your hands with Jesus.
Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God; ‘Matthew chapter 5 verses 8.’ The scripture made it clear that the standard life for a Christian is purity both in deeds, thoughts and with Holiness which no man shall see the Lord. How pure is your heart, not only with the people around you but with your relationship with God, can you see God with an impure heart filled with sin and immoralities of this world? Definitely you cannot. Remember in the book of Matthew chapter 4 verses 17; ‘Jesus began to preach and to say repent.’ Now repent from what, from your wicked ways and sinful practices. Have you done that? For it is only those who are pure in heart shall see God. The book of Matthew chapter 5 verses 3 to 11 contains the beatitudes which mean supreme blessedness. Those that can obtain these blessings are the people saved by faith in Jesus Christ and when they have these blessings, it will beautify their life and the beatitudes will be their attitudes. Salvation is the first step if you want to see God.
We can easily shout and lift up our voices but not in worship or in praises but to discuss about the dribbles of this world. The most precious thing to handle on earth is your soul because it is delicate and fragile. Have you lifted your soul to vanity and dribbles of this world instead in worship, in adoration, in praises and in thanksgiving, this is criteria number three, for all those whose soul has been fixed to vanity and in swearing falsely or deceitfully cannot ascend into the hill of the Lord.
A woman who was a sinner in the book of Luke chapter 7 brought with her an alabaster box of ointment, came to Jesus when He was in a house of a Pharisee to eat, she began to weep at feet of Jesus after which she dried His feet with her hair, she kissed the feet of Jesus and anointed them with the ointment, she did not utter a word, do you know why?The lady came to Jesus just for one purpose; she came to worship Jesus and how did I know? She came with the costliest possession of hers, she prostrated and wept at the feet of Jesus, she dried the feet of Jesus with her hairs and lastly she did not say a word. She was stunned at the awesomeness of Jesus, she was convicted of her sins and the fragrance she poured on Jesus came back to her, finally she gave a speechless adoration to Jesus.
Worship is costly and if you worship Jesus and it has not cost you anything like your time and other things, you have not started. Do you know why our prayers are so dry? It is because we do not worship, do you know why we came out of the place of prayer the same way we went in, it is because we do not worship, we did not gaze on His Glory, on His awesomeness, on His sufficiency, on His majesty. God’s glory is marvellous and no man will see the glory of God and be the same. You cannot be-held the awesomeness of God and be mad at your wife, your children and the society at large. Where did you leave the fear of God and the worship meant for Him? People quote the book of Jude verse 6 saying; the angels lost their own habitation but the scripture said; they left their habitation. Those angles made a deliberate choice the very day they left Heaven ‘their habitation’ because the daughters of men where fair to them.
Where did you make a deliberate choice to throw worship to the dunghill? Nobody has ever touch the height or depth of God in worship like David ‘a man after God’s own heart’ have you ever asked why God made such statement about him? Do you think there is anything different about him? The least of Jesse’s household but God exalted him. I believe David knows how to praise and worship God. He was a man of war and he did not lose any battle.
A man that worships God like King David and King Jehoshaphat will never lose in this battle of life. Worship can move mountains; praising God can turn a mountain into a plain. I am still convinced that this present generation has lost the awesomeness of God and that is why our Churches are dry, the pulpit is dry because there is no brokenness in our heart, there are no tears of repentance, we are not moved in the presence of God because we are not in His presence. We have deviated from the standard of worship; in prostration, in adoration, in thanksgiving which we ought to give God but we have left it for the so called; church fanatics, and that does not mean we should make noise in the house of the Lord.If you are spiritual, people will call you names, if you love God more than you love anything else, they will insult you, but continue in the grace of God because the world hated Jesus, how much more we the servants of the Most High, they will never treat us differently as they have treated Jesus. In Heaven there is no doll moment, heaven is an impeccable joy, hell is an impeccable sorrow, heaven is an eternal bliss and hell is an eternal darkness, which one will you choose? God in His infinite wisdom has made us to know Him, love Him, serve Him and worship Him in this world and in eternity. The four beasts and the twenty and four elders cease not to worship God; we all know how they do it, sitting? No, the scripture said, they fall before the throne on their faces and worship Him, saying Holy Holy Holy, worthy are you to be praised. Is God worthy to be praised? But some have not thanked Him for the gift of life today.
God shared His spirit when He breathed onto Adam, we are part-takers of His spirit and we owe Him worship, thanksgiving and name it. If you know that God does not eat, like we do, then what does He require from us? He delivered the children of Israel from the land of Egypt to worship Him; the chosen (Israelites) of the Lord to be set apart for His suppose which is worship. The scripture in the book of Isaiah chapter 43 verses 7 says; ‘Even every one that is called by my name; for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him, yea, I have made him.’ If God has made you and formed you for His glory, what will be your thought or the action you ought to take to fulfill your obligation to Him that seats on the Throne? God demands glory and worship from us and we are mandated to give Him glory, honor and worship. Is the life you are living worth giving glory to God, do you live according to the precepts of God and according to His ordinances?
King David in Psalm 119 verses 5 declared that his ways were directed to keep the statutes of God, emphasis added, and I tell you, King David was a successful man because he gave himself to the statues and ordinances of God which glorifies God. You may worship God, bowing down, prostrating before Him but if the life you are living is not concurrent to the commandments of God, it is in vain. You accord the necessary reverence, honour and worship to God by living a holy life and in your day to day walk with God, find time to prostrate in His presence it shows your total surrender to God’s ways and precepts.
God has given us an assurance to come boldly to the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need; Hebrews chapter 4 verses 16.’ What an assurance! Just to come boldly, that you may obtain mercy. There is no other God which can give such an assurance to His people, but we the supposed bride of the Lamb do not know about this assurance, we can obtain this assurance by coming to God through His Son Jesus Christ, and follow Him. Glory to God and honour to His Holy name for we are called into His marvels light which cannot be comprehended by darkness.
What is your life if you do not worship, if you do not pay homage to the Kings of Kings and Lord of Lords. What will be of us, if our life is not seasoned with the grace of God that comes from total surrender to His commandments? There is one thing about God, He knows His people, those who are out of this world with cheers and not with tears, those who are bound in heaven and those who deceive themselves as worshippers of God. If God made man a little lower than the Angels and these heavenly creatures (Angels) fall down on their faces to worship God, what should we do?Should we sit before God? I will give you references from the scriptures about worship because if I continue to write about it, I will not exhaust it, it will be so wonderful for you to know where it is written in the good book (Bible).
As a man I write as I am moved by Him and I will direct you to His words as it was written by Holy men of God as they were moved by the Holy Spirit. God words are spirit and they are life and they are like two edged swords which can pierce the heart, cutting the joints and the marrow, reaching souls with convicting power to save them from sin andfrom the consequences of sin. The book of revelation contains the very act of worship which comprises the host of angles, saints and all the living creatures in heaven. See for yourself!
Revelation chapter 5 verses 8 to 14
Revelation chapter 7 verses 11 and 12
Revelation chapter 11 verses 16 and 17
Revelation chapter 19 verses 3, 4 and 5
1st Kings Chapter 18 verses 38, Exodus Chapter 34 v 8, etc.
What else will I say to him who has an urge to worship God, who has the zeal to adore the Most High, a word is enough for the wise, for mercy will be cut off one day but worship will last forever even to eternity. He that shall endure to the end shall receive from the King of Kings a crown of glory. The four beasts and the twenty and the four elders have a work in heaven, since their creation they cease not to worship God, when the four beasts behold the awesomeness of God, when they see the majesty of God which they have never seen since their existence, they have no choice than to fall on their faces and worship God and they are followed by the twenty and four elders casting their crown to worship Him that seats on the throne.
These living creatures in heaven have not seen a particular glory and beauty of God twice; they see continuously; new awesomeness, beauty and majesty of God. I do not want to go to God a pauper, because there are millions if not billions riches in Christ Jesus you and I do not know about. The awesomeness of God cannot be explained, it cannot be imagined but what shall we do? The only thing we have to do is to join those living creatures in heaven in worshipping God; this is our obligation as we remain on earth waiting for the second and final coming of Jesus in glory and power. The dead act or the substandard way of worship in this superficial church of this age put tears on the eyes of the Lamb of God, if you read through the scriptures you will understand that no man or soul can withhold the honor and glory due to God, but we on earth that is still living on time have forgotten to pay homage and worship God in whatever state or circumstance we find ourselves.
Remember King Herod was struck by an angel of the Lord because he did not give praise to God, making himself a god ‘Acts chapter 12 verses 23 emphasis added.’ Have you not heard enough of the word ‘repent’ but you shun the word and go your way, one day God will say to you depart from me, you workers of iniquities (Luke chapter 13 verses 24 to 28) because you claim to be saved that day you said Jesus I love you, be my Lord and Saviour but there is no sincerity in you, no repentance, no regeneration of heart and the life you are living on earth did not worth Jesus dying for.If you are saved, put worship in your relationship with Jesus and you will see the beauty of Jesus; add praises to your daily devotion to God. Put all things behind you and Jesus before you, the world behind you, the cross of Christ before you, I tell you victory is assured all-rounder in Jesus name Amen! And if you are not saved yet, repent!Go the saviour; Jesus Christ and plead for mercy, ask Jesus to atone for your sins with His precious Blood by faith, believe Him, follow Him and keep His precepts and teachings. May God help you find salvation in Jesus name Amen!
Source: From My Book: Tears of the Lamb
Published 2014 by LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing
Authored by Me: Nwosu Chuka Christopher.