Why we Worship

PSALM 47

Clap your hands, all peoples!
  Shout to God with loud songs of joy!
For the LORD, the Most High, is to be feared,
  a great king over all the earth.
He subdued peoples under us,
  and nations under our feet.
He chose our heritage for us,
  the pride of Jacob whom he loves.

God has gone up with a shout,
  the LORD with the sound of a trumpet.
Sing praises to God, sing praises!
  Sing praises to our King, sing praises!
For God is the King of all the earth;
  sing praises with a psalm!

Why Sing?

God reigns over the nations;
  God sits on his holy throne.
The princes of the peoples gather
  as the people of the God of Abraham.
For the shields of the earth belong to God;
  he is highly exalted!


Why Scripture?



 
Praise
Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens! Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his excellent greatness! (Psalm 150:1-2)


Recent Posts

God? Who Needs Him?
May 31, 2013
Self-sufficient humanism. Paul saw it coming – “lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God.”

Imago Dei
September 12, 2012
So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

Why Can't I Pray?
August 18, 2012
The bible gives us several reasons, but according to Jeremy Taylor, a deceitful heart is at the root of prayerlessness.

It's Not Rocket Science
July 23, 2012
To keep in step with the Spirit should be our daily quest. And if we are successful at that, all of life falls into place.

Theological Steak
April 10, 2012
These words by P. T. Forsythe on the magnificence of Christ's work are to theology what Ruth's Chris is to a good steak.

Describing the Indescribable
February 11, 2012
What we have in Christ will take all eternity to describe. But for one segment of one sermon, a great preacher made a mighty attempt.

Making Sense Of It All
January 30, 2012
Where are things headed? Is there rhyme and reason to the endless cycle of summer, fall, winter and spring? Is there a plan in place, or is randomness the explanation?

Testify!

August 14, 2010

Why does the song "Amazing Grace" resound so in our hearts? Because it is giving credit to where credit is due. He is the God of all grace. And we are the grateful recipients.


He has preserved our lives and kept our feet from slipping. Psalm 66:9

Samuel Rutherford (17th century) wrote a letter to the parishioners of Kilmacolm, and 200 years later the Scottish pastor Alexander Whyte examined Rutherford's insight.

'Some of the people of God,' says their sharp-eyed censor, 'slander the grace of God in their own soul.' And that is true of some of God's best people still.

We meet with such people now and then in our own parishes to-day. They are so possessed with penitence and humility; they have such high and inflexible and spiritual standards for measuring themselves by; the law has so fatally entered their innermost souls that they will not even admit or acknowledge what the grace of God has, to all other men's knowledge, done in them.

Seek out, says Rutherford, the signs of true grace in yourselves as well as the signs of secret sin. And when you have found such and such an indubitable sign of grace, say so.

Say this, and this, and this, pointing it out, is assuredly the work of God in my soul. When you, after all defeat, really discover your soul growing in grace;

in patience under injuries;

in meekness under reproofs and corrections;

in love for, or at least in peace of heart toward, those you at one time did not like, but disliked almost to downright hatred;

in silent and assenting acceptance, if not yet in actual and positive enjoyment, of another man's talents and success, gain and fame;

in the decay and disappearance of party spirit, and in openness to all the good and the merit of other men; in prayerfulness;

in liberality, and so on; when you cannot deny these things in yourself, then speak good of Christ, and do not traduce and backbite His work because it is in your own soul.

'Some wretches murmur of want while all the time their money in the bank and their fat harvests make them liars.'

Through many dangers, toils and snares
I have already come;
'Tis Grace that brought me safe thus far
and Grace will lead me home.

AMAZING GRACE by John Newton

 






Choiring The Proper Praise

February 18, 2009

Who has not been wowed by the majesty of a mountain, or a hummingbird flapping his wings two feet away? There is no end to earthly delights, in all shapes and sizes. And they all point us to our Creator, and praise, whether we like it or not.


Since the creation of the world, God's invisible qualities - his eternal power and divine nature - have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. Romans 1:20

Dr. Tim Keller says that "behind everything there is an ultimate mystery, there's an inpentatrable divine realm, behind all of nature there's super-nature, behind the temporal there is the eternal."

Anne Dillard, in her book PILGRIM AT TINKER CREEK, in page after page struggles beautifully to describe what she has witnessed in observing our world. She stops short of ascribing her observations to a creating, all-powerful God, but she comes oh, so close.

One day, as she stood on the shore of the Florida coast, some sharks decided to show off.

"There is a way a wave rises above the ocean horizon, a triangular wedge against the sky.

If you stand where the ocean breaks on a shallow beach, you see the raised water in a wave is translucent, shot with lights. One late afternoon at low tide a hundred big sharks passed the beach near the mouth of a tidal river in a feeding frenzy.

As each green wave rose from the churning water, it illuminated within itself the six-or-eight-foot-long bodies of twisting sharks. The sharks disappeared as each wave rolled toward me; then a new wave would swell above the horizon, containing in it, like scorpions in amber, sharks that roiled and heaved. The sight held awesome wonders: power and beauty, grace tangled in a rapture with violence.

We don't know what's going on here. If these tremendous events are random combinations of matter run amok, the yield of  millions of monkeys at millions of typewriters, then what is it in us, hammered out of those same typewriters, that they ignite?

We don't know. Our life is a faint tracing on the surface of mystery, like the idle, curved tunnels of a leaf miners on the face of a leaf. We must somehow take a wider view, look at the whole landscape, really see it, and describe what's going on here. Then we can at least wail the right question into the swaddling band of darkness, or, if it comes to that, choir the proper praise.


Speaking of choiring proper praise, here is how the Psalmist articulated his wonder at a crashing wave.

The seas have lifted up, O Lord, the seas have lifted up their voice; the seas have lifted up their pounding waves. Mightier than the thunder of the great waters, mightier than the breakers of the sea - the Lord on high is mighty. Psalm 93:3-4







Every Reason To Be Thankful
November 23, 2008
Complaining seems to come naturally, doesn't it? Being thankful is a whole different matter. We have to work at it, knowing that if we are obedient in this, God will get the credit he deserves, and our satisfaction in Him will expand.

Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep
November 3, 2008
One never knows what a day might hold. So to safely get through a day is a mercy of God, and He deserves our thanks. John Baillie gives us a helpful example from his prayer life.

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made #2
October 12, 2008
Isaac Newton pondered,"Was the eye contrived without skill in optics, and the ear without knowledge of sounds?” The more we know about our bodies, the more our wonder expands. Or at least it should.

A Burst of Praise
October 3, 2008
Do you often feel tongue-tied when trying to express devotion to God? Do words fail you? Why not borrow from the best? Here, from the heart of Augustine, a transformed mind expresses the grandest truths in a masterful, gifted outpouring.

Samuel Rutherford and Gratitude
September 27, 2008
Trials and testing can rob us of joy, and can turn us from contentment, and cause us to be disgruntled. Trust in God's sovereignty is key to spiritual health.

Thanksgiving - Don't Lose Your Mind!
September 27, 2008
I will sing with my spirit, I will also sing with my mind. 1 Corinthians 14:15

The Medicinal Side of Thanksgiving
September 27, 2008
We are told to give thanks. And isn't it just like God to have side benefits built in, so that we are helped as God is honored? Spurgeon tells us how.

C.S. Lewis On Praise
September 27, 2008
Christians are called to praise the Lord. Why? What is that all about? And just what does it "accomplish?

From The Mouth of St. Francis Of Assissi
September 26, 2008
Psalm 119 is a prayer, yes, but it is also a work of art. Occasionally, God anoints his servants to take us higher. Such is the following prayer of that great saint, Francis of Assissi.

From The Heart of Augustine
July 7, 2008
My mouth will declare your praise. Psalm 51:15

Everybody Praise
July 7, 2008
Every living soul belongs to me. Ezekiel 18:4

Boasting In The Cross
July 5, 2008
When I survey the wondrous cross
On which the Prince of glory died,
My richest gain I count but loss,
And pour contempt on all my pride.
Isaac Watts






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