Oct 18, 2009

Worship Series (pt.1): "A Fruit of Grace"

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. 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. (Psalm 95.1-7 ESV)

Because God is Worthy (v.1-2)

  • We ascribe worth-ship
    • Here the Psalmist calls God the Rock of our Salvation- showing He is our security and deliverer
    • Ascribe means to give something or someone a characteristic: acknowledging a quality
    • “worth-ship” is the old English word from which we get worship: means “giving worth to something.” Since He is our deliverer we should come to Him with thanksgiving
    • In worship we ascribe to God His worth- in other words acknowledge or confess his worth
    • Worship actually transcends just confessing or acknowledging, because in Psalm 22.3 it says God inhabits, or is enthroned on, His people’s praises: He is in our worship

Because God is Great (v.3-5)

    • We understand His awesomeness
      • He is our Great LORD
        • Hebrew: YHWH- “Then Moses said to God, "If I come to the people of Israel and say to them, 'The God of your fathers has sent me to you,' and they ask me, 'What is his name?' what shall I say to them?" 14God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM." And he said, "Say this to the people of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.'” 15God also said to Moses, "Say this to the people of Israel, 'The LORD, the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you.' This is my name forever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations.” (Exodus 3.13-15 ESV)
        • LORD” is the word “YHWH” in Hebrew, translated in modern versions as LORD (with all capital letters, the first large and the last three capital but smaller)
        • YHWH is significant as being related to the verb “to be”- speaking of God’s relationship with His people (example: ‘I am with you, I will be with you, I have been with you’); and in God’s own existence- He has always existed, exists now and will always exist
      • He is our Great King, none other can stand against Him
        • Note: Mentioning “all gods” does not mean they are real: it describes God’s sovereignty over all things- whether real or fictional
  • He is our Creator and Sustainer
    • Creator: Genesis 1.1; “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made.” (John 1.3 ESV)
    • The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, 25nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything. (Acts 17.24-25 ESV)

Because God is Ours (v.6-7)

  • We, as Christians, are the “people of His pasture” His sheep. Christians are children of God in Christ
    • John 1.12But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God…” (ESV)
  • We are saved by His grace
    • Romans 5.8God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (ESV)
    • Ephesians 2.8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God…” (ESV)
  • We benefit from God’s grace and should produce fruit
    • John the Baptist told the Pharisees they needed to “bear fruit in keeping with repentance” (Matthew 3.8 ESV)
    • Likewise, as those who benefit from God’s gift of grace, we should bear fruit
    • Our thankful hearts should burst forth in worship
    • Dobson’s Dog story illustration (Dynamics of Worship James P. Gills, Creation House Press 2004)
    • The spontaneous love and affection of this dog for its human rescuers and new family is a small picture of how Christians should react in worship toward the God who saved them

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