Friday, May 29, 2015

Worship

 I recently read an article arguing the use instrumental accompaniment vs a capella singing in church.

I know people who follow a pastor from church to church and people who drop out of church all together when a pastor leaves or when life circumstances require them to move away from the area where "their" pastor is.

 One of the biggest ongoing sources of strife in the modern evangelical church is "contemporary" vs "traditional" service structure, specifically concerning the music styles of "praise band" and "organ/piano". This has been an "issue" on some level in churches all of my adult life.

I am really struggling to get my thoughts focused, but the thing that is gnawing on my brain is the question

 
"What do we worship?"
 

More specifically, do we worship God or do we worship... worship?

 If music style, the order of service, or whether the pastor wears a suit and tie, a robe, or t-shirt and shorts causes an uprising in the church, I have to wonder, "What are we worshipping?" Are these things, which are designed to draw our focus to God actually drawing our focus away from God and to our own selfish desires?

If worship causes such division in the church, then are we actually worshipping... worship?

 How do we determine whether or not we have made an idol out of worship, music, order of service, tradition, the pastor, heritage, denomination, or any other aspect of "church"?

I think that, if we are more concerned with or focused on anything other than God during worship,  perhaps we need to ask whether we are worshipping God or that thing we are focused on / concerned with.

That's a question we all have to answer individually I suppose.
 
I do know that Satan loves to disrupt corporate worship and cause dissention between believers. He is who benefits most when he can disrupt an entire congregation. He basks in the glory of his own pride when our focus is distracted from God during worship.

 I've often heard that idol worship is loving the gift more than the giver of the gift.

 Worship is a gift. We should worship the Giver.

The first 2 Commandments speak to this…

Do not have other gods besides Me.

Do not make an idol for yourself, whether in the shape of anything in the heavens above or on the earth below or in the waters under the earth. You must not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the fathers’ sin, to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing faithful love to a thousand generations of those who love Me and keep My commands. Exodus 20:3-6

Do we make an idol out of Church, worship, tradition, the pastor, denomination, or religion?

Is it possible that we love the gift of worship more than the giver?