Word of Encouragement Worship Devotions

Worship is death

The whole point of worship is to minister to the Lord, in the way that He asked for. If you really think about it, God hasn’t asked very much in return for all that He does. His great love motivates Him to bless His people, and worship, the act of thanksgiving to Him, is all He asks for in return. You may think that obedience is what He wants in return, but that is Old Testament thinking. We don’t obey God because we are scared of the punishments or because He might take away His blessing. No! We obey God because of our great love for Him. It’s the same reason we worship!

You might think that worship is an easy way to show gratitude to the Lord, but worship can be one of the hardest things you’ll ever do because in order to really worship God, something has to die. Imagine for a moment what agony of spirit must have raged within Abraham at God’s request to sacrifice his son, Isaac – to think of giving up what was absolutely the most precious thing in his life! But he obeyed God’s command. In fact, knowing his son was about to die, Abraham said to his servants, “The boy and I will go over there and worship.” (Genesis 22:5) Worship was an act of death. Then, at the altar, Abraham bound his son and drew back the knife. In that moment of sacrifice, God’s angel intervened, and His provision was a ram to be offered in his place. Jehovah-Jireh always provides!! (Genesis 22: 8,14)

You might think that worship is an easy way to show gratitude to the Lord, but worship can be one of the hardest things you’ll ever do because in order to really worship God, something has to die.

Worship costs something! It involves sacrifice, giving something of the highest value to God – our own selves. The Bible says “Give unto the Lord the glory due his name; bring an offering, and come before Him; worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness” (1 Chronicles 16:29). God speaks the language of sacrifice. He respects sacrifice because He sent His Son, Jesus to be a sacrifice! He gets it. “I strike a blow to my body and make it my slave,” Paul wrote in 1 Corinthians 9:27. Sometimes that’s how worship feels, isn’t it? If you only ever worshipped when you felt like it, what would be the “living sacrifice”?? Just like Jesus had to die as a sacrifice, you and I have to die, to ourselves daily in worship- every time. Worship is birthed from a grateful heart, but without a willing sacrifice, how can you express that gratitude if you offer something God didn’t ask for?

Thought for today

At different times in your life, or even at different points in your day, you’ll feel like worshipping more, or less. That’s a normal experience in the life of a Christian! But what set someone like Abraham apart from the rest was that he was willing to destroy what he held most dear because he implicitly trusted God. He didn’t ask a bunch of questions. He didn’t fret about the outcome. He had no idea that God would provide. He simply obeyed and went to worship. At at the very moment of his greatest sacrifice, God sent a miracle! He will do the same for you! Here’s a challenging thought: We all want God to bless us and give us strength, and a legacy and abundance like Abraham had, but are we willing to sacrifice as Abraham did, to worship the Lord?

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