March 3, 2017

March 3, 2017

DEUTERONOMY 11-13

Focus Verse: “Your pattern of worship will change. Today all of you are doing as you please, because you have not yet arrived at the place of rest, the land the Lord your God is giving you as your special possession.”

Deuteronomy 12:8-9

 

I’m going to take this passage out of context a little bit…which is always a very dangerous thing to do with scripture. I think if you go back through and read the passage surrounding it though, you will find that, though I am applying it a little differently than God’s direct instruction to the Israelites, the heart of God remains the same through both applications.

 

I feel like this passage applies so well to the church today. We worship as we please. Seriously. When was the last time you asked God how you should worship? Most likely never. We show up to church on its designated time of the week, and once there, we “worship” for the allotted time, then sit down and behave like good little boys and girls until we are blessed to go out into the world and forget everything we’ve just experienced (no pastor actually says this, but that’s what 90% of us do).

 

It is so ingrained in us that to do a church service any differently would draw huge objections from those running the church. We love to hide behind the veil of “Well there would be chaos! Paul charges our services to be done with order.” And that’s where we know better than God.

 

Do we really think that the God who ordered all of the laws of nature, Who placed the stars in the sky, Who engineered every atom in yours and my body, can’t also order our worship services? He could handle all of the universes and the everyday tasks in your life, like breathing and cellular reproduction, but WE are the ones who have to take control of these services.

 

THAT’S NOT OUR JOB!

 

So do we sit back and let people do whatever they want during our time of worship together? Absolutely not! We, as a collective body (NOT JUST THE PASTOR), are called to test the spirits. We have the responsibility of determining whether what we are doing is what God is telling us to do.

 

Instead, we are driven by fear. We’re afraid of giving up control. At it’s lightest, we are afraid that false teachers and prophets will hurt some in our congregation. At the worst though, we are prideful and want all of the attention for ourselves. We want the book deals and the mega-churches. The spotlight and the salary.

 

But what if we just tried what this passage from Deuteronomy says? Just give it a shot and move from worship as we please and ask God how He wants us to worship. My honest guess is that it would look nothing like what we’re doing now. And it might actually lead to lasting change in us. That tends to happen when we listen to the Lord.

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