Pastor Steve Williams : When We Gather for Worship

Authentic Worship · 45:56 · Recorded June 23, 2019

When We Gather for Worship

Hebrews 10:25 (CEV) Some people have gotten out of the habit of meeting for worship, but we must not do that. We should keep on encouraging each other, especially since you know that the day of the Lord’s coming is getting closer.

Matthew 18:20 (NAS) “Where two or three have gathered together in my name, I am there in their midst.”

How we do Christian worship

There aren’t prescribed orders given.

There’s no single, sacred style.

There is a right approach we pursue.

John 4:23 (NLT) “True worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship him that way.”

There are three audiences to consider.

Colossians 3:16 (CSB) Let the word of Christ dwell richly among you, in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another through psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.

When God meets us in worship

See Isaiah 6:1-9 (p.605)

1. I gain a greater vision of God.

Revelation 4:8 (NIV) Day and night they never stop saying: “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come.”

2. I get a truer view of myself.

3. I make a fresh visit to Calvary.

Romans 3:23-25 (NLT) Everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. Yet God, with undeserved kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood.

4. I’ll hear a higher voice of authority.

Romans 12:1-2 (MSG) Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleep-ing, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering…Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.

5. I’ll find a new venture of purpose.

Romans 6:13 (TLB) Give yourselves completely to God – every part of you – for you are back from death and you want to be tools in the hands of God, to be used for his good purposes.

Worship elements emphasized in the New Testament

Singing to the Lord

Ephesians 5:18-19 (KJV) Be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord.

See also Matthew 26:30

Reading the Scriptures

1 Timothy 4:13 (NIV) Devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching.

See also Acts 2:42; 17:11; 20:32

Offering up prayers

Acts 2:42 (NIV) They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.

See also Acts 1:14; 4:23-31; 12:5; 1 Timothy 2:1-2

Preaching (also called “prophesying”)

2 Timothy 4:2-3 (NLT) Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching. For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear.

See also Acts 2:42; 1 Peter 4:10-11

Offerings for and beyond the Church

1 Corinthians 16:2 (TLB) On every Lord’s Day each of you should put aside something from what you have earned during the week, and use it for this offering. The amount depends on how much the Lord has helped you earn.

See also Acts 2:45; 4:34-35; Galatians 6:6; 1 Corinthians 9:14; 1 Timothy 5:17; 2 Corinthians 8-9

Communion & baptism

Acts 2:41-42 (TLB) Those who believed Peter were baptized—about three thousand in all! They joined with the other believers in regular attendance at the apostles’ teaching sessions and at the Communion services…

1 Corinthians 11:26 (CSB) For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes.

  • What personal benefits have you discovered that you gain from attending worship services?
  • Recall a particularly memorable worship service where you feel you encountered God – How were you changed as a result? Do you think you seem to have grown more from private or public worship experiences?
  • Look over the listing of Christian worship elements. Which elements do you especially find meaningful & why? Why do you think each is important and matters?
  • Today, Churches tend to be more contemporary and “casual” in dress, style, music, etc. Understanding that there are “upsides” and “downsides” to anything we do, how is today’s worship good and how can it also be bad? What safeguards should we keep in mind to be sure our experience of worship is authentically “in spirit & truth”?
  • Read Jesus’ parable in Luke 18:9-14. What do you find similar to Isaiah’s worship experience in Isaiah 6:1-9? What’s different? How do you think the two men in Jesus’ parable “prepared” themselves for worship differently?
  • What idea from this message really stood out to you that you need to give more thought, prayer, and response to? How could your group pray for you or hold you accountable to respond?
  • Elementary parents, today our bottom line is be brave because God is with you. Ask kids who was brave in our story. (Daniel) Why did he need to be brave? (He was thrown into a den of lions.) Daniel could be brave because he knew that God is mightier than hungry lions and would protect him. God will protect us, as well.
  • The Way

  • Who You Say I Am

  • Hallelujah For The Cross

  • Build My Life

  • So Will I

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