What is the Biblical definition of Worship

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by J.D., Sep 5, 2010.

  1. J.D.

    J.D.
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    "Worship" - what is it, according to the Bible?
     
  2. freeatlast

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    The NT word means'
    1) to kiss the hand to (towards) one, in token of reverence
    2) among the Orientals, esp. the Persians, to fall upon the knees and touch the ground with the forehead as an expression of profound reverence
    3) in the NT by kneeling or prostration to do homage (to one) or make obeisance, whether in order to express respect or to make supplication
    a) used of homage shown to men and beings of superior rank
    1) to the Jewish high priests
    2) to God
    3) to Christ
    4) to heavenly beings
    5) to demons

    However the scripture also says in truth. In that the person must not be simply going through the motions. They have to be doing the worship from a pure and surrendered heart, not of force but out of a willing heart. One way we worship or reverence God is how we live.
     
    #2 freeatlast, Sep 5, 2010
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  3. canadyjd

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    I don't know that "worship" is defined in scripture, but it is certainly described. It is not something we do for God... it is something we do in response to God's revelation.

    Whenever it is described, imho, it follows a pattern. God reveals Himself in some way to someone. That person responds by ascribing worth (worship) to God. The "worship" can take various forms, from falling on their face to singing songs of praise to building altars and sacrificing animals.

    Pattern.... God reveals... we respond with worship.

    peace to you.:praying:
     
  4. J.D.

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    What texts support the definition and/or description of worship? Why do we call what we do on Sundays "worship"? Is it biblically supported? And why do churches have a "worship" leader?
     
  5. freeatlast

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    I am not sure what you mean by what texts support the definition. The Greek word means
    1) to kiss the hand to (towards) one, in token of reverence
    2) among the Orientals, esp. the Persians, to fall upon the knees and touch the ground with the forehead as an expression of profound reverence
    3) in the NT by kneeling or prostration to do homage (to one) or make obeisance, whether in order to express respect or to make supplication
    a) used of homage shown to men and beings of superior rank
    1) to the Jewish high priests
    2) to God
    3) to Christ
    4) to heavenly beings
    5) to demons

    The question as to why we call what we do on Sunday is simply an expression for some and a miss-understanding to others as to the real meaning and some actually are worshipping. Unless we are doing this as God prescribed (in spirit and truth) He does not accept it. Keep in mind that there is both individual as well as corporate worship. However no matter which is being offered it still has to be done in spirit and truth or it is rejected.
    As to a worship leader, not all churches has one. In those who do he/she would be expected in keeping the order of the worship on a particular tract or time as well as bring some type of spiritual involvement to the congregation in preperation for the message. Let's be honest we can be dead heads at times.
     
  6. Zenas

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    It's a misnomer. If a church has someone called a "worship leader" it's a sure sign the service will begin with interminable songs and lots of hand waving. A better title would be chaos leader.
     
  7. freeatlast

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    Why do you believe that?
     
  8. J.D.

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    You are providing texts in your post (in spirit and truth). That's what I'm looking for. And I think that text is a good starting point. Obviously, when Jesus told the Samariatan woman that "those that worship the father must worship him in spirit and truth", he wasn't talking about the individual act of bowing down or kissing the hand of some dignitary. The woman had a place of worship in mind, "in this mountain", and, "in Jerusalem". So can we safely say that the text supports a form of corporate worship? Yet none of your definitions would support this.

    In other words, if "worship" involves some sort of act of obesience such as falling prostrate, how many of our churches actually "worship" as a corporate body? By the way, Muslims critisize Christians on this issue - they insist that they practice the biblical form or worship due to their kneeling and bowing during prayer. Do they have a valid point?
     
  9. J.D.

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    I tend to agree with this kind of statement. However, what biblical support do you and I have for this opinion? Singing and lifting of hands are in the Bible aren't they?
     
  10. freeatlast

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    I did look in the scriptures and everyone that I could find where it is said that they worshipped Jesus are all reported to falling down or bowing down.
    Now the question is, is that worship? Yes it can be, but is that what God requires? No. God requires our worship to be done in spirit and truth, not in a place or be certain actions even if those actions are falling down. Scripture says this.
    God [is] a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship [him] in spirit and in truth.

    First in spirit. This requires the new birth. We must worship in and by the Holy Spirit We have to have the same Spirit as God according to scripture. That is the reference given.

    Second in truth. Jesus said;
    Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

    So to worship in truth we have to worship God by worshipping Jesus.

    Put together the only true worshippers are those who have been born again and worship God through Jesus. That can be done by falling down, singing praise, prayer, how we live our lives or any number of things. As long as the person offering the worship is saved and offering the worship to God in Jesus the worship is accepted no matter how is comes or from where the person or persons are offering it. So worship can be done in a corporate setting or on an individual case. However in the corporate setting some might think they are worshipping but in spirit are not because they are not saved. While God would still receive the individual worship even from a corporate setting He would also reject those who are not true worshippers.

    So true worship does not require falling prostrate any more then falling prostate makes acceptable worship. True worship can be done and shown in many different ways. God says he accepts true worship done in Spirit and truth. He does not say that it requires any certain actions.
    So as to the question that a Muslim might raise as to bowing or becoming prostate they are incorrect. The do not even offer up worship that is accepted since they do not do it in spirit and in truth.

    One last thing. There was a time when becoming prostate in church was done at times. There was a time if someone was called on to pray that the man who was called on would get up out of his seat and go to the center isle and prostate or bow for open prayer. That is not a requirement but it could show humility. Also I think we have somewhat lost the idea of becoming prostate today in our private prayer time and it might be a good idea to re-visit it, but it is not a requirement.
     
  11. Bob Alkire

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    Double post!!!

     
    #11 Bob Alkire, Sep 6, 2010
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  12. Bob Alkire

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    Worship for me seems to be prayer and study of the Scriptures. Prayer of thanksgiving, or help and so on. I have never been able to spend much time in the Scriptures and not have to pray. Spending time with my Savior.
    There are many passages in the Bible on worship, these are a few which have stood out in my mind over the years.
    Gen. 22:5 "Then Abraham said to his young men, "Stay here with the donkey; I and the boy will go over there and worship and come again to you."
    1 Sam. 15:25 "Now therefore, please pardon • my sin and return with me that I may worship the Lord."
    Psalms 95:6 "Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!
    Matt. 2:11 "And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.
    Matt. 14:33 "Then they that were in the ship came and worshipped him, saying, Of a truth thou art the Son of God.
     
    #12 Bob Alkire, Sep 6, 2010
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  13. freeatlast

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    Bob you are correct that there are many forms of worship. And it would be true to state that anyone can worship any way they please including anyone of any religion. However equally as true is the fact (ststed in God's word) that God only accepts worship done in Spirit and truth. He rejects the rest.
     
  14. rbell

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    It makes him feel superior to other Christians.
     
  15. jaigner

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    Acts of honor and submission to God in response to God's self-revelation and in accordance with his will.
     
  16. TomVols

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    The Biblical definition? To worship is to sit and listen to choirs or soloists sing songs by Fanny Crosby, Bill Gaither or some other old hymn (and by old, we mean written after 1900) :laugh:
     
  17. Bob Alkire

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    I believe Tom has tongue in cheek on this but I am wondering about this deal on music.
    Off subject. When I was in school I never heard much about heaven and never heard of the singing part of service as worship.
    Maybe the seminary I went to wasn't up on it all as far as music went. All we ever heard was watch the music minster if you have one, because so many churches have had trouble with music at that time in that denomination.
    First time I ever heard of a worship leader was in a Pentecostal magazine back in the late 60's or early 70's.
    When did it start calling the music the worship service and the music leader as the worship leader?
     
    #17 Bob Alkire, Sep 6, 2010
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  18. annsni

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    Wow - You must have visited some pretty bad churches and not decent ones.

    We have worship leaders so that we DON'T have chaos. They are the ones who decide what song we're going to sing and lead the music and singing. Without them, it would be quite the noise with everyone singing what they want.
     
  19. jaigner

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    It should be called "corporate worship" or "gathered worship" instead of just "worship." It's not completely incorrect, but implies a misunderstanding.

    Worship is when we live our lives in response to God's gracious self-revelation. The things we do on Sunday morning, which can involve singing, creeds, prayer, scripture, spoken word, and a number of other things, is a ceremonial snapshot - a representation - of what should be happening in our lives throughout the week. To call the music portion "worship," again, isn't necessarily wrong, but perpetuates a misunderstanding.

    I don't care for the term "worship leader" because that's not what I do. I am, if anything, a music leader or director. When a minister leads other portions of the service, he or she is also leading worship, er...corporate worship. And if there is no worshiping happening the rest of the week, there is likely none happening on Sunday morning.
     
  20. Tom Butler

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    Part of worship is telling God the truth about Himself.
     

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