This is my recap of lesson 8 of the course which I have decided to follow, this is not intended to be a full article or bible study but is just me picking out the key topics and themes I got from Lesson 8.
I know, I know, I know… I didn’t upload last week on my current status on this course (mostly because I didn’t open the booklet anytime last week), so I ask for forgiveness.
LESSON 8: WORSHIP IN THE NEW TESTAMENT
The Bible often speaks about the importance of worship and we can see this in the book of John 4:22-24 ‘But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him…’. When God the Father is seeking such worship you know its a valued commodity, you know that there is a purpose behind believers who worship, it is not a pointless endeavour that is done to boost our self-esteem, there is something spiritual and of value behind a believer who worships in ‘Spirit and in Truth’. ‘Jesus is presently singing in the midst of the church… he is united with us in song as we celebrate His victory’ (Tom Inglis)
11 We who have been made holy by Jesus, now have the same Father he has. That is why Jesus is not ashamed to call us his brothers. 12 For he says in the book of Psalms, “I will talk to my brothers about God my Father, and together we will sing his praises.” (Hebrew 2: 11-12, TLB)
Churches are not only praying for souls but preparing the atmosphere to receive them with praise’.Tom Inglis
I love what Tom writes in this course that ‘churches are not only praying for souls but preparing the atmosphere to receive them with praise’. The key word I picked up is ‘atmosphere’, we are not just reciting words but developing an atmosphere that welcomes and embraces people openly in the same way that it was the atmosphere of His presence that embraced us so lovingly when we gave our lives to God. In Acts 16:25-26 when Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God prison doors where open, chains were broken and the earth was shaken, this story just reminded me of how when David played his instrument the things that tormented Saul left ( 1 Samuel 16:14-23), the things that kept these men hostage where released once praise and worship was introduced. Praise and worship invite’s the Holy Spirit and prepares our hearts to accept him, when Paul and Silas were in song and worship they were not praying out of fear but praying from a position of faith, they allowed for the atmosphere of the Holy Spirit to intercede. What’s more extraordinary, is that their actions were in accordance with the word that had been written years prior, they knew exactly what to sing that was specific for their circumstance:
“I hurried not hesitating to keep Your commands. Though the ropes of the wicked were wrapped around me, I did not forget Your law. I rise at midnight to thank You for your righteous judgment”psalm 119: 60-62
There is something called being a ‘Practical Christian’, if someone comes knocking at your door hungry it can be tempting to pray “Father, we pray that this person may go in peace and may your love surround them all the days of his life” when really we need to just give them food. This also happens in our prayer life where what we need we don’t ask and instead we pray about something else… or we ask but don’t have anything to evidence why we should receive. I loved studying English literature when at secondary school because I used to say you can make up anything just so long as you can find a quote to prove your argument… okay maybe don’t makeup but my point still stands unless you don’t have a scripture to support your case your request is somewhat void. Paul and Silus understood this for ( the following is taken from the booklet)
- Both incidents found in Psalms 119:60-62 and Acts 16:25-26 were recorded as happening at midnight or the middle of the night
- Both were bound by chains of iniquity
- Both were determined to break free to give thanks
- Both used the basis of God’s righteous judgements ( His Word) to secure freedom
Mankind is waiting to hear a new song, a song of deliverance from the redeemed that will also set them free (Psalm 40:3)
Through their praise and worship, the other prisoners were also set free.
Tuned into the frequency of heaven
In the Old Testament in Numbers 10:1-10, there are 2 trumpets which were created, now depending on the sound the trumpets made, people would be informed of whether they were going to war, to sacrifice, to move location etc … etc. If the people did not know what the sounds meant it spelt trouble. The people had to be in tune with the sounds from the trumpets, they had to be in tune, in harmony with what the Lord said. When we praise as mentioned prior, we invite the presence of the spirit, an atmosphere of heaven into our present environment where despite being on Earth we are now operating in the heavenly and we are thus more in tune and more in line with the sound of our Lord.
‘Be filled with the Spirit, converse with one another in the music of psalms, in hymns, and in sons of the spiritual life, praise the Lord heartily with words and music and rendering of thanks to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ at all times and for all things’ ( Ephesians 5: 17-19) —> What an instruction to receive , an instruction for us to live in continuous praise and worship, to be interceding in worship, living in worship, communicating in worship to the point that we are overflowing with the Spirit of God whose breath moves and has its being in us.
There are Christian songs that I hear but I often find that the ones that stick in my head the most are ones which might as well be a direct translation from the psalms… I would sing them as a child without even knowing that I am quoting the very bible I found boring. Mum and I joke quite often when she drinks a fruit juice that has been out of the fridge for a while, that it might be alcohol (since we don’t drink alcohol ) and if she starts singing merry songs then we know she is drunk. When we are drunk in the Holy Spirit, it is only natural to sing merry songs about our God like how men start singing when merry with alcohol.
The Revelation of worship
We can use the book of revelation as an indication of what the church will eventually look like. The new testament church is a singing musical church and must operate as such. Here are some scriptures found in Revelation in support of what Tom Inglis writes
- Revelation 1:10-11 ( the voice of Jesus was like a trumpet)
- Revelation 4:1 ( Voice like a trumpet)
- Revelation 5:8-10 (4 living creature +24 elders with harps and singing)
- Revelation 8: 6,13 (7 angels with 7 trumpets)
- Revelation 9:14 ( angel with trumpet)
- Revelation 14: 2,3 ( harpists and singing)
- Revelation 15:2, 3 ( overcomes with harps singing a song of deliverance
- Revelation 18:22, 9 (harpists, musicians, flautists, trumpets)
To end today’s post:
On an unserious side note, is it me or is there some sort of bias towards trumpets?