Primer on Christian Worship

Jesus said, “But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth” (John 4:23-24 NKJV).

1. Worship primarily means “to ascribe worth” to God who deserves our honor and respect for creating us (Revelation 4:11), and for redeeming us (Revelation 5:9). These Scriptures make God the focus of our worship.

2. Worship is done in private and in public. Privately, we usually do it in the privacy of our home by ourself, or with our family members. Publicly, we worship together with others at an appointed time and place , usually our church, where we praise God with spiritual songs, pray for God’s blessings, honor God with our giving, receive teachings from God’s Word, and fellowship with other worshippers as a part of our worship experience. Private and public worship are both necessary for our spiritual health.

3. Worship is a duty and a delight. It is a duty because God requires us to worship Him. It is a delight because of our love for God and for one another. To neglect our duty to worship God is to miss the delight of worshipping God.

4. Authentic Christian worship is Christ-centered, not man-centered. Christ-centered worship is about what to give to Christ as an expression of our love; man-centered worship is about what to get out of worship attendance, which is a growing attitude among many worshippers today. To be authentic and God-pleasing, our worship should be Christ-centered, not self-centered.

5. Worship of God in this life is a preparation for worship in the new heaven and new earth for those who accepted Christ as Lord and Savior (John 3:16, 36; 14:26; Revelation 21 to 22).