Psalms 95:1-5 ESV
“Oh come, let us sing to the Lord;
let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation!
Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving;
let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise!
For the Lord is a great God,
and a great King above all gods.
In his hand are the depths of the earth;
the heights of the mountains are his also.
The sea is his, for he made it,
and his hands formed the dry land.”
In our relationships with Jesus Christ, singing and giving praise to him and thanking him in song should be part of our worship of him and should be included in our times of devotions with him. I believe that is one of the reasons the Lord includes a song with every devotion he gives me because he wants songs to be a part of my time of worship of him.
Nonetheless, singing songs of praise and worship of God does not in itself constitute true worship of God. We can sing just to sing, and we can mouth words of worship, and it doesn’t mean we are literally worshiping God at all. So, a song service in a church is not necessarily a worship service if worship is defined merely by singing praise and worship songs.
And leading people to worship God is not done just by leading them in singing songs of praise and worship of God. Especially in today’s modern gatherings of what is called “church,” which is now filled with people of the world and with Christians in name only as well as with those of genuine faith in Jesus Christ, chances are not many are truly worshiping the Lord.
For we read in Romans 12:1-2 that we are to present to God our bodies as a living sacrifice to God, holy and acceptable to God, which is our spiritual worship of God. So, if our lives are not surrendered to Jesus Christ, if he is not our Lord (Master), and if we are not dying daily to sin and to self and walking in obedience to his commands, then we are not truly worshiping him. Surrender must come before singing for it to be true worship.
And so if one is to lead others in a time of true worship of God, one should first of all lead them to give their lives to Jesus as living sacrifices, holy and acceptable (pleasing) to God. And they should be led to not being conformed to the ways of this sinful world, but to be transformed in heart and mind of God’s Spirit and to now walk in the ways of the Lord, in practice, in truth.
Psalms 95:6-11 ESV
“Oh come, let us worship and bow down;
let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!
For he is our God,
and we are the people of his pasture,
and the sheep of his hand.
Today, if you hear his voice,
do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah,
as on the day at Massah in the wilderness,
when your fathers put me to the test
and put me to the proof, though they had seen my work.
For forty years I loathed that generation
and said, ‘They are a people who go astray in their heart,
and they have not known my ways.’
Therefore I swore in my wrath,
‘They shall not enter my rest.’”
And here we have explained for us also what it means to truly worship our Lord. We must bow down and kneel before the Lord. We must humble ourselves in submission to Christ as Lord (Owner-Master) of our lives. We must surrender our lives to him so that we are now his possession and so we now live to do his will and to obey his commands.
He is now our God, but not in name only. He truly is now the one directing our lives and leading us in the way that we should go, and we are truly following his lead in doing what he requires of us. And we are his sheep, so we listen to him, and we heed what he says, and we follow him in obedience to where he leads us (John 10:27).
And what it says next to us here is also repeated for us in the New Testament in Hebrews 3-4, and is referenced, as well, in 1 Corinthians 10. So, this isn’t just Old Testament teaching. Today, if we hear the Lord’s voice speaking to us about any part of our lives, or about our whole life, we must be careful that we do not harden our hearts and stop up our ears and refuse to listen because we don’t like what he says.
And how did the Israelites put the Lord to the test? They went astray from God in their hearts. They practiced idolatry and sexual immorality and they were revelers and they grumbled against the Lord. And they put him to the test because they knew his commands and yet they disobeyed them just by testing to see if God would actually do what he said he would do. And he did. Most of them died in the wilderness and did not enter the Promised Land. And they did not enter into God’s eternal rest, either.
And so these things are written down for us as examples of what not to follow so that we might not desire evil as they did, and so that we don’t end up becoming idolaters and those who practice sexual immorality and who grumble against the Lord and who put him to the test by our rebellion and by our willful defiance and disobedience.
For if sin is what we practice, and if righteousness, holiness, and obedience to our Lord are not what we practice, then we, as well, will not enter into his eternal rest. We will not inherit eternal life with him because we would not listen, and because we would not obey, and because we chose our own path to follow, instead, by going our own way and by not going HIS WAY.
So, we are to take heed lest there be in any of us (who say we are Christians) an evil, unbelieving heart, leading us to fall away from the living God. Instead, we are to exhort one another every day, as long as it is called, “today,” so that none of us may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin. For we have come to share in Christ if indeed we hold to the truth of the gospel of our salvation and to walks of holiness in Him firm to the end.
But, if we choose our own path, instead, and we walk in sin and not in obedience to our Lord, meaning we have, thus, strayed from our Lord and from the truth of his gospel, Scripture teaches that we will die in our sins. We will not inherit eternal life with God no matter what we profess with our lips. Yes, our God is very gracious, but he sets the standard for what is acceptable to him, and he says if we walk in sin that we will die in sin.
[Lu 9:23-26; Jn 6:35-58; Jn 15:1-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; Tit 2:11-14; Jas 1:21-25; Rom 12:1-2; Eph 2:8-10; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-10; Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; Heb 10:26-27; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Matt 7:21-23; Ac 26:18; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]
His Tender Mercies
An Original Work / January 26, 2014
Fear not! I’m with you.
Be not dismayed!
God watches o’er you.
Trust Him today.
He’ll lead and guide you;
Give you His aid.
He’ll love and keep you
With Him always.
Walk in His footsteps.
He’ll lead the way.
Trust in His love;
Believe that He cares.
He will not leave you.
Faithful He’ll be.
His tender mercies
Now you will see.
Fellowship with Him
Throughout the day.
Tell Him your heartaches.
He’ll heal always.
Rest in His comfort.
He is your friend.
Your faith He’ll strengthen,
True to the end.