Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Defining Worship, part 2

This is part 2 of 4. To begin at the beginning, read this one first.

Christian Worship is Made Perfect through Jesus Christ
One of the tenets of our faith is that through Christ alone do we have salvation. Because of his perfect sacrifice, he paid the price once for all sins. After going through the message series on Hebrews, and reading through Hebrews as part of the Community Bible Experience, this much should be clear.

Growing up, though, I never heard this connected to worship. Just as we are presented as perfect in Christ before the Father, so also our worship is perfect through Christ alone. Think of the worship imagery used in Hebrews: Jesus is the great High Priest and the perfect sacrifice(Heb 4:14-5:10; 9:11-14). Jesus sits at the right hand of God, interceding for us, the mediator of a new covenant (Heb 4:15). He brings our worship to the Father. Through Jesus we are brought into the mystery of the Trinity, able to have communion with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

Our worship, then, is the sound of gratitude. We may worship with different attitudes and words: cries for mercy, petitions for healing, prayers of forgiveness, songs of awe and wonder. But the primary theme is one of gratitude: thanks be to God for His amazing gift in Christ Jesus.

This is why, when we pray, we often close with, “…in Jesus’ name, Amen.” We are proclaiming the centrality of Christ. The words are not magic, assuring that our prayers are heard. They are a reminder to us and to others that our hope, our salvation, our faith, and our worship are in Christ. This is also why we try to make sure the majority of our songs proclaim the name of Jesus.

Is Jesus the center of our worship? What is preventing you from enthroning Him with praise?

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