Worship VS. Emotions?

Discussion in 'General Baptist Discussions' started by Scarlett O., Nov 24, 2007.

  1. Scarlett O.

    Scarlett O.
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    Worship vs. Emotions?

    Let’s talk about this. I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts.

    I understand the idea that some Baptists don’t care for emotional worship or what they may call “emotionalism” substituting for worship.

    In the late 1970’s in my area, one of the local Baptist churches went “charismatic” and it turned off so many people and it basically colored the attitude towards worship of two entire large towns!!! I kid you not.

    We were all so afraid of the “charismatic movement” that, looking back, worship became and stayed very stoic. Not a blink. Not a voice above a whisper. The same stanza of the same hymns sang the same way all of the time. No one dared to lift a hand or say “amen” or “glory” or “praise God”.

    Worship became synonymous with silence, gravity, and the clamping down on one’s emotions.

    I’m not so sure that this is biblical worship. People in the bible were loud. When the people in exile saw the temple being rebuilt they shouted and the elders who had seen the former temple as young men wept so loudly that the bible says the sound could be heard for long distances. There was a lot of shouting and crying in the Old Testament.

    David poured his heart and guts out in very emotional psalms. Whether he was angry at his enemies or remorseful or in a praise mode, he was very emotional.

    Jesus, Himself, sweat drops of blood. He cried. He got angry with a righteous anger.

    I’m not saying that worship has to be emotional. That’s not the definition of worship.

    But I am asking what is wrong with hearing a song that moves you to weep and expressing thanks to God in that state?

    What’s wrong with hearing the bold truth from the pulpit and voicing your praise to God over that truth with an “amen” or “praise God”?

    What’s wrong with being so humbled in God’s presence when you pray that express yourself to Him with great joy and gladness?

    I do believe that one can be moved by a song or a sermon – moved to tears or an expression of emotion and still NOT be worshipping. Emotions are only connected with worship when you share your emotions with the God who made you. Acknowledging God’s Holiness and His attributes and exalting His name is the purpose of worship.

    Can’t one do that with or without publicly expressed emotions?
     
  2. annsni

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    AMEN

    LOL - I'm totally with you. When I worship - in whatever way I worship - I want to do it with my whole heart, my whole mind, my whole strength, with my SOUL. It's not going to be just something I "do" but something I AM.
     
  3. TCGreek

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    Worship must be in spirit and in truth. Proper worship must be tempered with both.

    1. On the one hand, we must avoid the emotionalism of the Charismatics.

    2. And on the other hand, the dryness of many fundamentals.

    I personally believe that the book of Psalms can teach us what really is at the heart of worship--emotions tempered by truth and vice versa.
     
  4. abcgrad94

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    Sometimes we just worry too much about what other people think instead of what God thinks! I've seen this work both ways--one church we attended was quiet and no one dared raise a hand or yell amen for fear of "the look" given by other church members. You had to "stay in the box" there.

    In the church where my husband was reared, the opposite was true. People tried to out-pray, out-sing, out-amen-glory-hallelujah everyone else as a sign of their true worship. There was lots of emotion, but not much worship in spirit and in truth.

    I think if the Lord prompts you to cry, shout, raise a hand, or whatever, then do it, as long as it's for the glory of God and not to bring attention to one's self. Sometimes I'd like to set off a few firecrackers under the pews just to get people to wake up!:laugh:
     
  5. Alex Quackenbush

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    Be ye transformed by....THE RENEWING OF YOUR MIND.
     
  6. Sopranette

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    Is this continuing on from the thread in Music ministries? The one on Scriptual worship? If so, I've already stated my point of view (yes, it is an emotional reaction).

    love,

    Sopranette
     
  7. Alex Quackenbush

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    There is absolutely NO place in the Bible where anyone is commanded to have or display a certain emotion. What is required is a certain mental attitude from doctrine and from that we might or might NOT have an emotional experience or expression.

    But without a right mental attitude which is one reflected by positive volition toward God and His Word (the result being the filling of the Spirit verses grieving or quenching the Spirit which occurs when we have exercised negative volition toward God), all the emotions in the world mean nothing. But with the right mental attitude we can be assured that whatever emotions we may or may not have or display we have the the essential response that results in the filling of the Spirit and genuine worship.
     
  8. Sopranette

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    Make a joyful noise unto God IS a command. You're right, though, I can't force it, it just wells up from inside. There is no place for empty theatrics.

    love,

    Sopranette
     
  9. TCGreek

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    For example, Psalm 150 is laded with emotional expressions in worship.
     
  10. Alex Quackenbush

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    Here are commands to praise God for various reason and then specifically with musical instruments. I see no laded emotional expression. People praise in many ways and the most you can do here is ASSUME emotion of some laded sort is present. Some people praise with emotional experiences being notable and some without much, if any, emotionalism. While praising may evoke dramatic images, this universal demand on that all praising be dramatic fails. But what IS universal and most notably though is the CAUSE of praise here in Psalm 150.

    Praise Him for His might acts and according to His greatness. Notice that the praise originates with or is caused by the MENTAL process considering and valuing His mighty acts and His excellent greatness.

    Praise God why? Because of His greatness and His mighty acts. We cannot consider anything like that without the MENTAL capacity to think about it, value it and appropriately acquiesce to it, without our mind. And from that humble position we praise God because of the truth we acknowledge which is His greatness and mighty acts.
     
  11. TCGreek

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    1. My bad Q! I was looking at Ps 149 in my Bible but then wrote 150.

    2. Here's Ps 149:
    Psalm 149

    1 Praise the LORD. [a]
    Sing to the LORD a new song,
    his praise in the assembly of the saints.

    2 Let Israel rejoice in their Maker;
    let the people of Zion be glad in their King.

    3 Let them praise his name with dancing
    and make music to him with tambourine and harp.

    4 For the LORD takes delight in his people;
    he crowns the humble with salvation.

    5 Let the saints rejoice in this honor
    and sing for joy on their beds.

    3. Giving the context of the Psalms, I really do not see any Rejoicing and Dancing without emotions. Do you?
     
  12. Alex Quackenbush

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    Gotcha:thumbs:
     
  13. LeBuick

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    I agree worship should not mandate an emotional response, it also should not suppress any out flowing of emotion if done in Spirit and in Truth.

    Shame on me but I like to add, “If the spirit moves you” to the 150 psalms.

    If the spirit moves you praise him with the timbrel and dance:
    If the spirit moves you praise him with stringed instruments and organs.

    It is not a command but a lifting of restriction. Is this pandemonium, no it simply means what ever you do must be done in spirit and for the Lord. For He is worthy of all praise, honor and glory.
     
  14. LeBuick

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    Maybe a waltz or two step but certainly not the cha-cha :laugh: :wavey:
     
  15. Alex Quackenbush

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    My question is not, are emotions present but what is the CAUSE of the rejoicing and dancing?

    Emotions, whether barely measurable or demonstrative are present in all humans (with some medical exceptions). The question isn't whether they are present but are they basis of worship?

    Here again, emotions are not the CAUSE of the REJOICING and DANCING but the AFFECT of what is realized in the minds of the ones rejoicing and dancing. Emotions are evoked I am sure but they are evoked from something and that something is what went on in their minds.
     
    #15 Alex Quackenbush, Nov 24, 2007
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 24, 2007
  16. PastorSBC1303

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    IMO, this is the key to the whole discussion!
     
  17. LeBuick

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    I guess I'm not clear what the question is?

    Are you asking how one is filled with the spirit?
    Are you asking what is on the mind of one who is full of the spirit?
    Are you asking what the difference is between full of the spirit and emotion?

    Does this help?

    Ac 2:1 And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place.
    2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.
    3 And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them.
    4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
     
  18. DHK

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    Psalms 126:5-6 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy. He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.

    Jesus was "deeply distressed," or "groaned in the spirit" before he prayed that Lazarus would come forth. He even wept.

    Often when petitioning God there may be tears, and as the Bible indicates more often than not, this kind of petitioning, travailing in prayer--"the faithful fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much," brings fruit.

    On the other hand, the emotional, wishy-washy froth of the Charismatic is nothing but carnality.
     
  19. Joe

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    If people were getting too emotional in church, especially if they were sitting beside me in my pew, I would get up and leave right then. I thought that type of display was reserved for small group ministries, in which, I am not a part of.
     
  20. Tom Butler

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    I once attended a Charismatic church service with a friend. At the beginning, drums started a heavy beat, then the worship leader began clapping his hands, urging the congregation to follow suit. It did. Then, these words, "Come on, we've got to get in the spirit." The clapping got louder. Then the other instruments kicked in. Some started dancing in place.

    Those folks thought they were worshipping. I knew I wasn't. At that point, not one praise chorus had been sung, not one scripture verse had been read. The worship atmosphere was being worked up to a heavy beat and and a hot guitar.

    A lot of that service appeared to be spontaneous. It wasn't. My friend told me that it was carefully planned and orchestrated.

    Services at my own church are sedate by contrast, and pretty traditional. But they are not devoid of emotion. There are occasional amens, occasional arms raised heavenward, occasional tears--even occasional applause. But it's not contrived.

    I have attended other churches, Baptist and otherwise, where the music was entirely different, the worship style was a bit freer and the instruments were different. And I still worshipped, and I sensed the presence of God.

    Can you worship without emotion? I don't think so. But it wells up from within, not worked up from without.
     

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