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The Heart of Worship - Part 5

Tom Pennington • Selected Scriptures

  • 2007-04-22 AM
  • We Were Made to Worship
  • Sermons


This week I read a quote from one of the world's great philosophers, he wrote,

"Tonight I was in a meditative mood, I was absorbed in the contemplation of nature. I admired the immensity, the movements and the harmony of those infinite globes. I admired still more the intelligence which directs these vast forces. I said to myself, one must be blind not to be dazzled by the spectacle; one must be stupid not to recognize the author of it, one must be mad not to worship Him."

Those words were penned by Voltaire. In spite of his own spiritual state he was absolutely right. Worship is the only understandable, the only reasonable response to God's self-revelation. Whether that revelation is in nature or in conscience where He's written His law, or in Christ, or in the Scripture. Ultimately, to see God in His glory and in His greatness will drive us to worship.

We've been studying our Lord's teaching on worship from John 4 and I invite you to turn there with me again this morning. John 4 the paragraph that begins in verse 20 and runs down through verse 26, our Lord teaches us about worship. The paragraph begins with a statement that really isn't a statement but a question by the woman there, the Samaritan woman there at the well. She says,

"Our fathers worshiped in this mountain, and you people say that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship," Jesus said to her, "Woman, believe Me, an hour is coming when neither in this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth. The woman said to Him, "I know that Messiah is coming (He who is called Christ); when that One comes, He will declare all things to us." Jesus said to her, "I who speak to you am He."

Now in this paragraph, as we've discovered over the last number of weeks, Jesus identifies for us several inviolable laws of true worship. If you're going to worship God, then you must worship God according to the prescription that Jesus lays down in this paragraph. We've studied two of these laws completely together. The first law that we discovered the first inviolable law of true worship is in verses 20 to 21, it's that "true worship is not external but must rise from the heart." True worship is not about where your body happens to be at the moment or some activity that you happen to be doing with your body. True worship must begin inside. It must flow out of the heart and only then is it true worship.

The second law that we discovered together and looked at in its entirety is in verse 22, and that is: true worship is not merely emotional but must result from knowledge. Our whole being is to be engaged in worship; so, worship is emotional but it is not merely emotional, there must be genuine knowledge of God for there to be worship.

Now last week we began to study a third inviolable law in this passage. It's related to the second law, but it goes much deeper and further. We find it in verse 23; it's this: "true worship is not intuitive but must be directed by God's truth." True worship is not intuitive, that is, it's not immediately known, you don't just sense it and know it; but rather true worship must be directed by God's truth. Notice what Jesus said to this woman in verse 23, "an hour is coming and now is," that's Jesus' shorthand in the gospel of John for saying, "with My arrival, with My coming a significant change has come about in worship, an hour is coming and now is when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth."

Now we saw last week that in practice those two components cannot be separated, the phrase 'in spirit and truth' cannot be separated. You will not have worship in spirit without worship in truth, you will not have worship in truth without worship in spirit. They come together as a package. While they can't be separated however, those two words describe for us two different facets of how we are to worship God.

So, we began last week to examine the first of those components the phrase, "in truth". We are to worship in truth, or as Jesus puts it to the woman, "true worshipers will worship the Father in truth". Now what does that mean? Well, there is certainly a sense, of course, in which this is speaking of all of God's truth, all of His revelation is to direct our worship. God's entire Word is to direct our worship to Him, and that is true. So, there is a sense in which that's what Jesus is saying to this woman. But the emphasis here is not on all of revelation, necessarily, but rather, on two specific components of revelation. The emphasis here is on understanding the truth about worship itself and the truth about God. To worship God "in truth" we must understand the truth about "how" we are to worship and we must understand the truth about "whom" we are to worship. We must understand worship itself and we must understand the object of our worship.

So, we began last week to look at the truth about worship itself, or "how we are to worship". You understand this that to worship God in truth requires that we understand what worship is. You can't worship God in truth if you don't even know what worship is, and so, that becomes absolutely crucial to our study together. Now when we examine the breadth of Scripture, we discover that the key idea in worship is contained in a single word, the word "response". Worship is at its heart, at its soul response. It is a response to God and to His self-revelation. Martin Luther wrote as we saw last week, "to know God is to worship Him". When we see God for all that He is in all of His greatness, in all of His grandeur, and all of His grace, and all of His goodness, we will worship. Whenever in the Bible created beings encounter God, they always, without exception, respond with worship.

Now we left off last time by asking the question, if worship then is "response", what kind of response? And that's the question I want us to answer today. We're still looking at the truth about worship itself. It's a response. What kind of response, exactly, is worship. Well, the best way to discover this is by studying the Hebrew and Greek words for "worship" as well as examining how worship occurs in various contexts throughout the flow of Scripture. It's been my joy over the last few weeks to do that, and I've discovered I think you can congeal it down to true "biblical worship", or "worship in truth" is characterized by three primary responses. Here's what worship is; worship is response and true ,biblical worship is characterized by three primary responses. I say "primary" because this is an exhaustive of all of the responses, but these are the primary responses to God that constitute worship.

The first of these three responses is "humble submission", humble submission. You see this in both the Hebrew and the Greek words that are translated worship. The Hebrew, the primary Hebrew word for worship as well as the primary Greek word for worship both mean the same thing. They both mean literally to prostrate oneself on the ground. To throw oneself on the ground before a superior especially when its royalty or a king. You see this throughout the flow of the Old Testament especially because that's the period of kings. In in the Old Testament the Hebrew word often occurs with a related expression that says to throw oneself on the ground or on one's face. It's not just prostrating oneself, it's prostrating oneself all the way prone, in the dirt.

Now, it's important to understand that both the Greek and the Hebrew words that are translated worship, the primary words for worship in both Testaments, sometimes they are translated with the physical act. They are translated "to bow down, or to prostrate oneself". Other times the same Hebrew and Greek words are translated with the English word "worship". It's the same word; "to bow down, to prostrate oneself, to worship". So, we could say this in the technical sense to worship is to bow down before or to prostrate oneself before.

Our English word worship of course means to ascribe worth, and there's a sense in which that's true as we'll see in a little bit. But that's not the essence of the Greek and Hebrew words. The essence of the Greek and Hebrew words is "to throw yourself down in front of someone whom you recognize to be superior to you". Physically these words describe every posture from kneeling to literally being absolutely prone on the ground with your face in the dirt and everything between. On a few occasions, this is done toward a human being who was in a position of superiority, particularly to the kings of the Old Testament.

Now, when we think about that, that's hard for us to even comprehend isn't it, let's just be honest with ourselves that in our time in history in our place in history that's hard for us to grasp. Because our problem here in the land of the free is that we have nothing that even closely resembles this act. This is foreign to us. Can you even imagine throwing yourself down on the ground with your face in the dirt before any human being? And yet that was a common aspect of the culture of the Old Testament. And that's what the word means. Now, although on occasion this response is offered to men, most frequently it is expressed toward deity. So, understand this, the primary words for worship in both Testaments mean to prostrate oneself before God.

Now I'm sure that you, like I do, sometimes find yourself literally on your face on the ground before God in prayer pleading with Him. But the main point behind these words for worship is not what the body is doing, we learned that in the first law didn't we. It's not about merely the external, although that's certainly part of it by the way, and I don't mean to downplay that; we will physically throw ourselves down on our faces before God when we see Him, but the main point behind these words, the reason worship is associated with an outward posture is because of what that posture shows about our hearts. Think about it for a moment. If you were to kneel before another human being, or if you were to throw yourself on the ground with your face down in front of another person, what would that show about your relationship toward and attitude toward that person. It would clearly show a heart of humility and submission.

As the great African American poet, James Weldon Johnson wrote in God's Trombones, something I became acquainted with in college. He has one of the preachers there pray this prayer, "Lord, bow our hearts beneath our knees, and our knees in some lonesome valley." That's the picture behind this biblical word that's the attitude that's to be here behind true biblical worship.

Now, you can see this attitude of humble submission clearly and how the Hebrew word for worship the main Hebrew word for worship is used in non-theological text, that is in text where it's not rendered to God. For example, turn to 2 Samuel 9; you really get a picture for what our response to God is to be by seeing what it looks like toward human beings. Second Samuel 9:6, now, you'll remember that Mephibosheth was in the lineage of Saul and Jonathan. And when Saul and Jonathan were killed, Mephibosheth was deeply concerned about what that meant for his future, he might be perceived as a threat because he was part of a different dynasty, and as long as he was alive there might be loyalists who wanted to revert from David and his lineage back to Saul. And so, with that concern, he comes here in verse 6, and it says in 2 Samuel 9:6, "Mephibosheth, the son of Jonathan the son of Saul, came to David and fell on his face and prostrated himself."

Now if this were God, it would say worshiped because it's the same word, but here he's not worshiping David, he is prostrating himself before David. Notice the attitude that goes with this, physical act. "And David said, "Mephibosheth." And he said, "Here is your servant!"

You see immediately by throwing himself on the ground in front of David, he was acknowledging that he was no threat to David's kingship, that, in fact, he had no desire to assert his own right to the throne, but instead he was humbly submitting himself to David and recognizing him as the true king. You see it again in verse 8; look at what he says, "Again"

[it says] "he prostrated himself and said, "What is your servant, that you should regard a dead dog like me?" You see that aspect of both submission and humility.

That's the very attitude we are to approach our God with in worship. A proper response to the greatness and the glory of God is an humble submission like that; whether accompanied by the physical act of prostrating ourselves, or whether merely the expression of our hearts, that's how we are to respond. You see by using a word for worship that means to prostrate oneself, God was telling us that we are to worship Him in an attitude of humble submission. Now let me show you an example in reference to God, turn to Joshua 5, you can see this same attitude displayed by Joshua toward a pre-incarnate appearance of Jesus Christ; you remember that not long after Joshua was put in charge that he sees a man. Joshua 5:13,

"Now it came about when Joshua was by Jericho, that he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing opposite him with his sword drawn in his hand, and Joshua went to him and said to him, "Are you for us or for our adversaries?" [Are you on our side or are you on the other side? I love the response verse 14,] "He said, "No; rather I indeed come now as captain of the [Lord of Hosts" or the] host of the LORD, that is I come as the captain of the army of the LORD. Joshua immediately recognizes that he is in the presence of deity, he is in the presence of a heavenly being,] "And Joshua fell on his face to the earth, and bowed down," [and notice what accompanies this prostration, he says,] "What has my lord to say to His servant?" [You see the attitude of humble submission. Immediately as part of his worship his response is you are LORD, I am servant what do you want from me? Verse 15,] "The captain of the LORD's host said to Joshua, "Remove your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy." And Joshua did so." [You see this humble submission that immediately responds to whatever the desire of the King may be.]

That's an example but in Psalm 95 we see a call to the same kind of worship for us. Turn to Psalm 95 1; by the way this Psalm has through the history of the church been used as a call to worship because that is what it is.

O come, let us sing for joy to the LORD. Let us shout joyfully to the rock of our salvation. Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving, let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms. For the LORD is a great God and a great King above all gods, In whose hands are the depths of the earth, the peaks of the mountains are His also. The sea is His for it was He who made it, and His hands formed the dry land." [As one commentator said here you see not only was the earth hand made but it is hand sustained. How do you respond to a great God and a great King like that, verse 6,]

Come let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the LORD our Maker. For e is our God, and we are the people of His pasture and the sheep of His hand. [In other words, He's the King the great King and we are His subjects, and so, let us humbly submit ourselves to Him, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.]

"Humble submission" is absolutely essential to true biblical worship. You know this kind of spirit of humble submission is really the spirit of the Lord's Prayer isn't it that we studied together a year ago now; when Jesus taught us to pray, "Your will be done on earth as it is in Heaven". What that really means is that when you and I approach God, we do so with hearts that are willing to obey whatever He tells us in His Word. It also means that in our hearts we accept unconditionally whatever His providential decisions about our lives may be. Or let me put it simply, to come and worship God properly means that we must bow to His holy Word, and we must bow to His sovereign will. That's really what this means, to come in humble submission. We bow to His holy Word, and we bow to His sovereign will. We must acknowledge that He is King and that He has a right to rule our lives.

Now folks, without this basic attitude, whatever worship activities you may involve yourself in, it is not worship, because this is part of the heart and soul of worship, this is what the words mean; to prostrate oneself, to humbly submit yourself to royalty to the King. Let me ask you, is that how you thought of your worship this morning? Is that how you're thinking now about even the teaching of the Word of God? Do you have in you a heart that is eager to humbly submit to the truth, to learn these things, and to put this into practice in your life, and to respond to God like this? To truly worship is to have this spirit of humble submission.

There's a second response that is always part of true worship to God, not only humble submission, but secondly "thankful praise and adoration"; thankful praise and adoration. Again, we can see this in a non-theological setting, we can see this response. In 2 Samuel 14;22 we read about Joab. It says, "Joab fell on his face to the ground, prostrated himself and blessed David the king;" One response that accompanied Joab's worship, or in this case, because it's a human being, his prostrating himself before David before the king, was: he blessed him; he opened his mouth and spoke blessing to him.

In the context to our response to God, it's called "praise and thanksgiving and adoration"; and that response is, listen carefully, that response is absolutely essential for true worship. There is no true worship without "thankful praise and adoration"; certainly, within the heart, and often flowing out of the heart, through the mouth in song or in words. Let me show you this in a number of contexts. Turn back to 2 Chronicles. I want to show you a couple of passages that really struck me this week. There are many of them in the Old and New Testaments, but let me just take you through a couple. Second Chronicles 7, we looked at this briefly last week. Here you have Solomon and the dedication of the temple that he has constructed. Second Chronicles 7;1,

Now when Solomon had finished praying, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices, and the glory of the LORD filled the house." [There was this visible display of the glory of God, this brilliant shining light that filled the house,] The priests could not enter into the house of the LORD because the glory of the LORD filled the LORD's house, [that is the temple was so overwhelmed by this visible display of God's glory that the priests couldn't even go in. Verse 3,] "All the sons of Israel, seeing the fire come down and seeing the glory of the LORD upon the house, bowed down on the pavement with their faces to the ground, and they worshiped" [and notice how worship expressed itself] "and gave praise to the Lord, saying, "Truly He is good, truly His lovingkindness is everlasting."

This is how worship always expresses itself is in "thankful praise and adoration". This is how to respond to the greatness and the goodness of God. In the same book, you see a similar response, 2 Chronicles 29:27, we fast forwarded now from the time of Solomon to the time of Hezekiah, the temple has not been appropriately used for many years and Hezekiah restores that worship; verse 27 of 2 Chronicles 29 says,

Then Hezekiah gave the order to offer the burnt offering on the altar. When the burnt offering began, the song to the LORD also began with the trumpets, accompanied by the instruments of David, king of Israel. While the whole assembly worshiped, the singers also sang and the trumpets sounded; all this continued until the burnt offering was finished. [Now look at verse 29,]

Now at the completion of the burnt offerings, the king and all who were present with him bowed down and worshiped. Moreover, King Hezekiah and the officials ordered the Levites to sing praises to the LORD with the words of David and Asaph the seer. So they sang praises with joy, and bowed down and worshiped."

Thankful praise and adoration is always connected to true biblical worship. It is one of the primary responses to the greatness and glory and goodness of God. When we turn over to the Psalms, we can see this same principle taught. In the Psalm that I read to you last Sunday morning, Psalm 29, the Psalm about the voice of the Lord in the storm; David writes in Psalm 29, 1,

Ascribe to the LORD, O sons of the mighty, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength. Ascribe to the LORD the glory due His name; worship the LORD" [and the New American Standard says,] "in holy array."

Literally it says, "in the majesty of holiness," I don't think that's the priests or our holy array. I think it's God's, so it would probably be best to translate it: worship the Lord in the splendor or majesty of His holiness. Now, notice here, because of the nature of parallelism and Hebrew poetry that: worshiping the Lord is the same as ascribing to the Lord the glory due His name. It's reciting what makes God great and grand and magnificent and majestic and beyond our comprehension.

Over in Psalm 66, we see the same point made by the psalmist, Psalm 66:1,

Shout joyfully to God, all the earth; Sing the glory of His name; make His praise glorious. Say to God, "How awesome are Your works! Because of the greatness of Your power Your enemies will give feigned obedience to You. "All the earth will worship You," [now watch how this worship expresses itself] "and will sing praises to You; they will sing praises to Your name."

When we turn to the New Testament, and in a number of texts we see the same principle laid down. One of those is in Romans 14 where Paul is talking about issues of conscience, and he inserts in there,

"don't judge your brother about these things for we shall all stand" [verse 10 of Romans 14 says,] "before the judgment seat of God, for it is written as I live says the Lord every knee shall bow to me" there's worship and how will it express itself, "and every tongue will give praise to God."

When we turn to the scene in heaven in the book of Revelation you see the same reality. Revelation 4:10,

the twenty-four elders will fall down before Him who sits on the throne, and will worship Him who lives forever and ever, will cast their crowns before the throne, saying, Worthy are You, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and because of Your will they existed, and were created.

By the way, there are several other passages in Revelation that flow the same way. What I want you to notice in Revelation 4 is that true worship in heaven is characterized by an attitude of submission. They fall down before Him. It's also characterized by an attitude of humility. Notice they cast their crowns at His feet. In other words, they divest themselves of what would bring them glory because they want Jesus Christ and Him alone to get the glory. And then in each case, through the flow of the book of Revelation, they then offer their praise, their thanksgiving, their adoration as an act of worship. To worship God is to proclaim to Him and to others the worth and value of His glory.

If you are not spontaneously responding to God with thanksgiving and with praise and with adoration, then you are not worshiping. Let me go a step further. If you don't often find yourself singing and praising and thanking God, you don't know God; because you cannot know God and respond in any other way. Let me give you an illustration from everyday life.

Think for a moment about life here in this world, about non-spiritual things: what non-spiritual, non-God oriented activity do you most enjoy in this life? Now be honest with yourself, what in this world brings you the greatest joy and happiness? Perhaps it's your family, your spouse, your kids, maybe it's your work. Maybe it's some hobby that you have, maybe its friends, maybe it's a place that you go every year, and you just with great eagerness look forward to going to that place. Maybe it's a special activity or event that is sort of the main event on your annual calendar that you look forward to and you plan toward and you build toward.

What is it that most excites you in this life? Whatever it is, I can guarantee you that you talk about it. In fact, you probably talk too much about it, and your family, and your co-workers, and your classmates, they may be sick of hearing about it, why, because you love and enjoy that thing whatever it is.

Well the same holds true for God, if you really know who He is, if you've really come to enjoy the riches of His grace, if you've experienced the depth of His love, if you've seen just the fringes of His power, if you've been awed by the beauty of His holiness, if you've been impressed by His sovereign control of all things; then you will sing, you will give thanks, you will praise, you will adore Him. You will tell God how wonderful He is, and you will tell others, you can't help yourself. It's the response to God. Whenever anyone encounters the true God, he or she always responds in humble submission in thankful praise and adoration.

And thirdly, he or she will respond in "Godly fear", in Godly fear. We worship God when we respond to Him with awe and fear and reverence. Again, both in Hebrew and in Greek there are words for worship that underscore this crucial attitude that's involved in true worship. Both in Hebrew and in Greek we could define the words this way; it means "to stand in wonder and awe at the majesty and greatness of the infinite being who is God". In Psalm 96:9 we read, "Worship the Lord in the splendor of His holiness, tremble before Him, all the earth." To truly worship God is "to be in awe of Him, it's to tremble before Him". Turn to Psalm 99, you can see this clearly in the Psalm the relationship between worship and this trembling spirit, this fear, verse 1 of Psalm 99 says,

The LORD reigns, [there you have this picture of God as King, highly exalted] let the peoples tremble; He is enthroned above the cherubim [there's His great chariot, this moving chariot of living beings called the cherubim] let the earth shake. [Don't just let the people tremble, at His presence the whole earth shakes.] The LORD is great in Zion, and He is exalted above all the peoples. Let them praise Your great and awesome name; [the name that inspires fear and awe] Holy is He. The strength of the King loves justice; You have established equity; You have executed justice and righteousness in Jacob. [Now watch verse 5,] Exalt the LORD our God and worship at His footstool; Holy is He.

You see the relationship here in these five verses between worshiping God and trembling before Him. We saw it even in the Psalm that I read for you a few moments ago in our Scripture reading of the morning, Psalm 2:11 says, "Worship the LORD with reverence" [literally with fear] "And rejoice with trembling." This is how worship responds to God. There is a humble submission. There is thankful praise and adoration, and there is Godly fear. The same spirit and attitude is present in the New Testament, you see it in the people's response to Jesus. You also see it in Hebrews 12, turn there for a moment with me, Hebrews 12: 28. The writer Hebrews summarizes the new relationship we have with God through Jesus Christ, and he says,

we [have received] … a kingdom which cannot be shaken, [therefore] let us show gratitude by which we may offer to God an acceptable [and the New American Standard says,] service [this is actually one of our words for "worship", one of the Greek words for worship,] by which we may offer to God an acceptable worship with reverence and awe. for our God is a consuming fire.

God will not be taken lightly. You remember what we saw in Leviticus 10, where God tells Moses after He'd consumed Nadab and Abihu with fire, He says, "by those who approach Me, I will be treated as Holy." God says, you better be afraid, you better tremble, its not the abject fear of terror although sometimes in Scripture you see people responding that way. That's why more often than not, when God appears, He's saying don't be afraid; because they are afraid. But certainly, the fear of awe and reverence, in Revelation 15: 4 we read; Who will not fear, O Lord, and glorify Your name? For You alone are holy; For ALL THE NATIONS WILL COME AND WORSHIP BEFORE YOU." [There is this inseparable relationship between worship of God and fear of God.]

True worship is always, always, always characterized by a sense of "awe and reverence" of who God is. Or to put it in the negative, "irreverence is always the enemy of worship". A flippant attitude toward God or toward worship shows that we don't begin to grasp the reality of what we're really doing.

This becomes, by the way, a good test, a test of churches. You can test a church of whether they are truly worshiping by whether or not these attitudes are present there. Worship styles vary; and in and of themselves there's nothing wrong with any of them. There's a traditional worship style, there's a contemporary worship style, there's a blended style like we have; but whatever the style may be ask yourself if there is a clear sense among those who are leading and those who are participating in all that's done, a clear sense of awe and wonder and reverence for God. If it's not there, then I can tell you on the authority of God's Word that whatever it is they're doing, and however sincere their hearts may be, they are not worshiping; because true worship always involves Godly fear. And I don't mean they have to be somber, I mean there ought to be a sense that you are struck with that these people are themselves struck with the majesty of God.

But let's bring this truth closer to home, to our own hearts. Let me ask you: can you honestly say, now think about this, can you honestly say that you tremble before God? Are you ever overcome with awe and wonder at the majesty and greatness of God or the display of His goodness and love in Christ? This is how worship responds. This is how we respond, automatically, when we really encounter the true God. Worship is a response, it is a response to God and His self-revelation, and how is it then that a true heart of worship responds to God? It responds in humble submission, in thankful praise and adoration, and in awe and reverence. Whenever you and I are truly worshiping God, those responses will always be present and they provide a test for us of whether we're truly worshiping God.

Now, with all of that in mind, we're ready to refine and complete the definition of worship that we began to put together last week. Let me give it to you, we now know what the responses should be, this is biblical worship: "worship is seeing and savoring the supreme value and worthiness of God and responding in humble submission, thankful praise and adoration, and Godly fear." Let me say that again, worship is seeing and savoring the supreme value and worthiness of God and responding in humble submission, thankful praise and adoration, and Godly fear.

Now let me ask you how have you done this morning? Did you respond to God as He deserves? what was your attitude as we sang, as we prayed, as we've listened to the Word of God read and taught? Can you honestly say that your heart was filled with humility and submission to God as your King? Whatever it is You teach me God, I want to do that, whatever You bring into my life, I receive that. Did you respond with thanksgiving and praise and adoration, did you do more than open your mouth, did you let praise of God flow from your heart, did you respond to Him like that? Did you respond to God this morning with awe and reverence for who He is? If not, in spite of the fact that you're here, in spite of the fact that you've done what the rest of us have done you have not worshiped God.

Let me remind you that you can't work up these responses. But you will manifest them as you come to know and understand God as He really is as He's revealed Himself in His Word. Luther was right to truly know God is to worship Him.

There's one more act of worship that we're going to involve ourselves in this morning, it's the Lord's Table; and we must carry these very same attitudes into the celebration of our Lord's death. "Humble submission to Him as our King", "thankful praise and adoration for His condescending love and grace", and then this "awe and reverence that what He must be for our sins to have demanded so high a price for Him to befriend us and to take us to Himself".

Let's pray together.

Our Father, we thank You for Your Word. We thank You for all that it reminds us of about You. Lord, as we gather this morning to celebrate the Lord's Table, we're reminded that His death dealt with all of our sin, including perhaps our greatest sin, not only have we failed to love You; but we who were made to worship You have failed so miserably. Father, forgive us for the sake of Christ, and now prepare our hearts to respond in true worship even as we've studied this morning as we remember His death together. We pray all of this in Jesus' name, Amen.

We Were Made to Worship