What the Bible Says about Worship

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Seems as though there would be more to worship than singing on Sunday, saying an occasional prayer, or owning and reading a Bible. What do you think worship is?

Dig deep. Think hard. Be open-minded. Open the Bible.

An understanding of why we worship God isn’t found in the news or in our workplaces. It can’t be found in the media or on our favorite reality show. It’s not found in a self-help book or on twitter.  

It can be found through observing the sunrise or hiking in the mountains. It can be evident in the face of a small child or felt in the evening winds. It can be seen in the lives of others, even in our own lives. Most importantly the answer to understand why we worship is found in God’s Word.

If you look for verses that speak to the act of worship, you will find numerous passages. 

Some scripture simply tells us to worship:  

“Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.” 
(Psalm 150:6 NIV) (1)

Other scripture gives instructions on how to worship:

“Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.”
(Psalm 100: 1-2 NIV)

There are also examples of others worshiping:

“About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God,
and the other prisoners were listening to them.”
(Acts 16:25 NIV)

The Bible even tells us how not to worship:

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.  
Their worship of me is based on merely human rules they have been taught.”
(Isaiah 29:13 NIV)

And there are many more verses and passages that speak to these areas of worship. Yet why? Why is it so important to give God the glory, offer him our praise, and do so with our hearts close to him? 

We can see what makes God deserving as we walk through who God is and what he has done.  We will find the true intent and purpose of worship.

Imagine a newborn baby and the sweet love of his father. He has anticipated, waited for, and prepared for the baby, falling in love before the child is born. Yet, the father knows he will one day send this child away. 

He will do this not because he doesn’t love the child. He loves this child with his whole being as he and this child are as one. He does so because he loves others too. He loves them so much he has devised a plan such that they can be adopted into his own family. He therefore chooses to send his child to accomplish this goal.

This isn’t any ordinary father, this is Father God. His Son has always been with him and we know why he did this. John 3:16 (NIV) says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” 

This is who God is, what he has done and why he is to be glorified.

We also find in scripture that we are all sinners. We fall short. We fail. We try. We need a Savior. Christ came to earth, lived a sinless life, was crucified and raised from the dead. He did this to build a bridge to the Father. Through the action of the Father and the son we could be forgiven of our sins and know, “…there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1 NIV). It was, “In love he (God)  predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will.” (Ephesians 1:5 NIV)

And the very next verse in Ephesians sums up like this, “to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One (Christ Jesus) he loves.” (Ephesians 1:6 NIV) 

Songwriters Matt Redman and Jonas Myrin give a snapshot of reasons in their praise song “10,000 Reasons”. The words include, “You’re rich in love, and You’re slow to anger. Your name is great, and Your heart is kind. For all Your goodness, I will keep on singing...10,000 Reasons for my heart to find.” (You can find that video here).

God loves us! He loves YOU!

He choose to give us his son. We have been adopted into God’s family. 10,000 reasons for worship. And more.

What are your “worship reasons”?

Write them down.

Read them again and again.

Express your reasons daily in worship to God. 


  1. Also see I Chronicles 16:23-24
  2. Also see Psalm 100: 1-2
  3. Also see Daniel 4:37
Posted by Janelle Webber with

Enter through the narrow gate.

enter through the narrow gate

Beyond religion, there is an encounter with a real and living being who is the son of God that confronts each one of us with this call to leave our old life behind and to enter into His life! Today I'm asking you to leave behind the denial of brokenness and perhaps the fear of non-commitment. This is beyond religion, its beyond church, its beyond Baptist, Catholic, Presbyterian or anything else; this is all about the purpose of Jesus' life! 

Jesus said something very scary in Matthew 7:13-14, and as your Shepard, I am not only obligated to share this with you, but I am praying that you and I would all wake up and hear the seriousness of this warning. If on 9/10, before 9/11, if we could have had the plans of what was going to happen, things would have been very very different! 

Jesus today, is telling us a reality of an impending catastrophe so that each one of us can avoid it. He said, "Enter through the narrow gate, for wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction…" Now, again, this is Jesus Christ speaking, He is telling us that destruction is imminent and that most people are going to experience it. "But small is the gate and narrow is the road that leads to life and only a few find it." 

Now this is not what Jesus wants to happen, it is what will happen if we don't listen to what He has to say. If we listen to what He has to say, then we can avoid it. Its like when Jonah was preaching to Nineveh, (Jonah 3) he just walked through this city and he said "Forty days and the city will parish!" Well, why would God send Jonah to say that? So that it wouldn't parish; and it didn't! In the same way, Jesus has sent His Word to our hearts and lives so that we can avoid the destruction that is coming in eternity.

You see, receiving Jesus is the starting line of life! It doesn't start when you graduate from high school, it doesn't start when you get married, it doesn't start when you get your first pay check or promotion or more money. The starting line of life is when you make the choice to give up your life and to receive Jesus Christ as your own personal Lord and Savior.
It can't be religion, it can't be you in charge, it can't be arrogance or pride, it has to be change! It has to be God literally coming to live inside of us, and rearranging our priorities. It has to be God literally plugging leaks in our heart, and filling us up with Himself! If we want to be saved and have eternal life, then we have to start following Jesus into a changed life! -Dr. Drew Shofner
Posted by Dr. Drew Shofner with

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