After attending church one Sunday morning, a little boy knelt at his bedside that night and prayed, “Dear God, we had a good time at church today—but I wish you had been there!”
At times our worship to God, can be nothing more than us just ticking the right boxes so that man can see who we are and how “good we are”. God is no-where in the picture.
Conservapedia.com describes a “Churchian” as someone who comes to church just to mark themselves present, they may be involved in ministry, but that does not extend to outside the four walls of the church. The worship that a “Churchian” offers to God, is just lip service there is no depth in it, there is no heart in it.
Where do you and I fit into this? If we had to classify ourselves and do an introspection of ourselves to determine where we fall today, are we in reality just Churchians playing the part of a true spiritual worshipper or are we true spiritual worshippers, living in obedience and not as actors on a stage, within four walls called a church.
Psalm 10:4 (NIV)
In his pride the wicked man does not seek him;
in all his thoughts there is no room for God.
1. Part time worshippers
David in this Psalm speaks about the pride of man that keeps him away from God. When we are taken in by pride, we become selfish, self-centered, it becomes all about us, and David put it aptly in this Psalm in vs 4, when he says that when pride takes over someone, their thoughts move far away from God, and there is no more room for God.
The problem with not having room for God in our hearts and minds, means that we are no longer fully surrendered to God. Part time worshippers, worship God out of convenience and the need to be seen by men.
Isaiah 29:13 (NIV)
The Lord says: “These people come near to me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.”
Worshipping God becomes like standing at a buffet, we have all these dishes in front of us, but we pick and choose, which ones we want. We tend to choose only that which is appealing to us, sometimes things that are familiar.
Sometimes we tend to worship God in the same way, we choose when and where we will worship God, and as part time worshippers we choose places and times of convenience. We choose some things and we reject others. You see we are not willing to go the full mile, we only want to go part of the way, but we want the reward of crossing the finish line.
As part time worshippers we only honor God with our lips, our actions never match up to it.
2.Self, the root problem of Churchian worship
When we spend time worshiping God, have we ever asked ourselves the question, which God am I worshipping? Maybe we should be asking that question. The problem with worship that is not directed to the only one who deserves it, is that it becomes selfish, self-centred and it removes the adoration and glory away from God and re-directs it on ourselves.
When we pray – is our prayer always about me, myself and I?
When we read the bible – do we choose only scriptures that make us feel good?
What about the way we dress when we come to church or go anywhere for that matter – is it so that people can admire how good we look or turn heads by the way we dress.
Exodus 20:3 (NKJV)
Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
The nation of Israel always wanted their bread buttered on both sides. They proclaimed that Yahweh was their God, but they were never sincere in their worship to God. They served idols.
A typical example was when Moses was with God getting the ten commandments and the people grew weary, and they asked Aaron to make for them a god that they could worship. This was all about how they felt, and what they wanted, and so instead of waiting on God, they decided to satisfy their own desires. Yahweh was never top on their priorities; they always ran after idols.
Revelation 3: 17 (NKJV)
“Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked”
The church in Laodicea is a perfect example of how our worship can move away from being God centred to being self-centred. They have tuned to “Churchian” worship”. The church in Laodicea was just going through the motions. It became all about self, about self-gain, self-righteousness, selfish ambition, and desire.
God speaks against this form of idolatry. In Isaiah 42:8, God says that he will not give his glory to anyone, that means you and I, God will not be short changed of the worship that he deserves, because we feel that we are more deserving than God himself, because we have become self-centred and prideful. And if we are not careful and do not change, God says he will vomit you out.
We need to be concerned today, that this does not affect us. The world has slowly crept into the church and instead of the church infecting the world, the world is infecting the church.
We lose track of what is important and of priority. We begin to worship the blessing rather than the God who blesses us. The thing we need to understand today is that there is no place for mediocrity, luke warmness, and self-centredness in the Kingdom of God. God gave us his best and he requires our best.
3. What will you choose
In Joshua 24:14-15 – Joshua made an impassioned plea to the nation of Israel:
“Now therefore, fear the Lord, serve Him in sincerity and in truth, and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of [a]the River and in Egypt. Serve the Lord! 15 And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of [b]the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
The most important decision that we will ever have to make in our lives, is the choice of who we will serve. There should be no compromise in our surrender to God. Being a spirit filled Christian who is on fire for God, worshipping God despite circumstances and challenges, is not something that is done part time. There is no on-off switch that we can just flick, whenever we feel the need to.
When we work part time in a secular job, there are no benefits that come with the job. The only way we get the benefits is by being in full time employment. This means that there is no other job that is taking your time and your commitment. You give yourself fully to it.
Being a full-time worshipper, means that you have given yourself fully to the worship of the only true and living God. Nothing will detract you from this. We cannot give God something that is half hearted when he has given us everything.
The choice to be a full time worshipper should not be about comfort and convenience or man’s opinion or even what we can benefit from it. When Jesus told the rich young ruler to sell everything he has, give it to the poor and come follow him – what he was telling him and us, is that we should have our priorities in check, does God take precedence in our lives or is he getting the short end of the stick.
This choice to surrender in worship to God, requires us to get rid of our agendas and rights, our selfish ambitions, and our own interests.
Revelation 3:16 (NKJV)
So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.
Let us move away from the state of being a lukewarm worshipper, and move to being a worshipper ho is totally dependant on the Holy Ghost and surrendered fully to God
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