A great article from Brian MacLaren, causing us to question again where the focus of our worship is, God or ourselves. This has come to mind recently for me, as i’ve struggled to really understand who God is. Yes, the theology books tell us God is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent, and we’ve heard sermons on God’s holiness and God’s love but beyond that, what can we really say from our personal experience of God, that we know of Him? How can we describe God? What words in our worship really show our knowledge of who God is and what makes him so great and worthy of our worship?

Written by timliu

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>I think today’s worship suffers from self centeredness, not because it does not go beyond doctrine, but for the lack of it.

The hymns of old are loaded with biblical doctrine. But who could accuse much of our beloved classics for lacking a personal/testimonial fervor?

Our knowledge of God begins with the biblical acccount. But that intellectual knowledge has to translate into spiritual and tangible knowledge that is perceived in life. When the Word becomes “flesh” or reality, then the doctrine is not merely biblical–it becomes a personal reality.

In recent years, it seems that praise songs and ministries have replaced spiritual experience/revelation with sensationalism. Through things such as sounds and images, many worship services provide a pseudo-spiritual experience. Sure, there are those at the opposite end of the spectrum that are just as empty and lifeless.

So whether we are singing hymns or contemporary praise, the lyrics should be biblical and doctrinal. In other words, just quoting some random bible passage and making it a song can be considered biblical but not doctrinal. Correct doctrine lifts up the soul. Although it is not called out in every sermon, anyone preaching salvation in Christ is ultimately expounding on the doctrine of justification by faith.

Ultimately, I am saying that God is knowable but not containable. Thus, our words will always be inadequate–for language itself is a product of a fallen mind. But the word of God is light in the darkness, providing enough glimmer of the glory above; the glory soon to be ours.


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