Wow, it has been a long time since I did the Psalmody International School of worship recap, but I am someone who likes to finish what they start even if it is months later. So today we will be recapping on lesson 11 from the psalmody booklet, and for this lesson we will be looking at 'Confession and Worship'. Please note that this is not a full bible study,it is mostly just a recap on what I had gathered from the booklet
CONFESSION AND WORSHIP
Hebrews 3:1, Therefore, Holy brothers and companions in a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the apostle and High Preist of our confession.
There is something powerful that takes place when we confess our faith that Jesus is Lord with our lips and believe in our hearts the miracle of Jesus being raised from the dead, we too become resurrected and made a new creation saved from our former ways, please read Romans 10:9-13 for reference. The words we speak over ourselves, circumstances and the people around us can direct our footsteps when we make confessions we are aligning our steps in God’s direction because the focus of our words, our confession is directed to God. It is difficult to walk towards God when our attention is diverted, I always think of when I am driving, just a split second of looking away from the road to change the temperature in the car, I begin to steer in the wrong direction. Through confession, we maintain our attention and not lose sight of the destination. Through confession we are speaking what is written in the scriptures, we are speaking and talking about Jesus, the word of God ( John 1:1).
Just like what is written in Jeremiah 15:16, we find joy in our hearts and rejoicing because it is through the word that our spirits are nourished, these words are food to our spirit man, the more we confess the more we nourish our spiritual bodies.
This is my recap of lesson 9 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 9.
Prayer and Worship
We often forget that we are spiritual beings and the God we serve is Spirit (John 4:24) therefore we must worship him in Spirit (John 4:24). Unfortunately, we sadly rely on our physical state rather than our spiritual. We believe in things that we see, hear and do with our physical bodies and have greater trust in this then the things our spirit-man see’s , hears and does. What this means, is that our worship does not quite reach the standard of worship God expects from us. We believe that our physical actions hold greater value then our spiritual actions because we can see the entire process of the work we do, for instance in regards to healing we see the process of when we applied medicine onto a wound and bandaged it and we saw the wound scab until it eventually fully healed. However, when we pray to God for healing, we can not see the process, from when our message reaches heaven to when its petitioned for by Christ , to when it is transferred onto a ministering angel until the wound is completely healed. So it makes it difficult have faith in kneeling in prayer.
God’s plan for every believer is to synergise prayer and raise together maximum results. Separately they are powerful an render amazing results, but when combined they are literally earth shaking (Acts 16:25)
Praying Christian is a dangerous Christian– WHY??!!– a praying Christian is a christian who has cultivated an intimate relationship with the Father. In mine and probably your own view, it is difficult to trust someone’s words whe you have never met them before this is why contracts are made should someone not follow their word, however, with a friend or family if they say they will do it you trust their words because you know them bettr , you see them on a frequent basis. When you commune with the Father often it becomes easier to trust His word and trust in a process that your physical eyes can not
“When we pray we fellowship with God by telling Him our needs, or the needs of others. When we praise Him, we are telling Him that we believe our needs are met according to His Word”
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’.
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
I have to admit, for the last few weeks I have been on the lazy-side, I was even contemplating on pausing this series or anything that I write on this blog for sometime. Why? Well part of me was wondering whether this was the right track to take, ( “I mean I really didn’t consult God when creating this blog” she confesses), creating this blog had been a vague idea of mine for quite a while but it wasn’t untill I felt I was in a desperate situation trying to crawl back to His Kingdom did I feel I needed something to push and encourage me in my endevours. I thought I could just pause on this Psalmody series purley because
I felt like I wasn’t being impacted in the same manner as I did when reading the book of John in the ‘Fall for Christ Series’
I wasn’t making the milestones on this blog as I would have desired so, naturally concluded I must be doing something wrong surely?
It came to mind several times that I never actually consulted God or waited to hear from Him ( like so many other things), and the thought that creating this site was a mistake was on my mind. But then I remembered that from the first post God had been revealing so many other things to me through the Bible and had even directed my studies considerably particularly about ‘The High Priest, the Tabernacle and His covenant’-> things previously learnt but never fully understood. Again ! please do not look to me as an avid reader of anything let alone the Bible or even someone who prays consistently in fact, I look to these peopel with both jealousy and apathy at the same time. I’ve mentioned this several times in other posts but this site was literally created to force me to open the bible and potentially if and when I had or have the courage ask God what to do for the next post. Although, I feel like I have made no progress; I have. Before SWJ, the thought of opening the bible just gave me a headache ( mind you I had just finished my ‘BA honours’ in a subject that requires a great deal of reading), now it doesn’t I’m actually excited to open my bible when I remember where I placed it, and in terms of prayer … well I have to get back to you on that one.
So why am I telling you all of these things when the topic for this lesson is ‘Kingdom Worship’. I realised this week that I have been thinking from an Earthly perspective of the word ‘success’ and not God’s version of success. Just being called a Daughter of the Most High is a success, my name even means Christ is with Me (TRUTH!!!!!), knowing that I am a fully fledged member of His kingdom is SUCCESS!!!. I was thinking about Abraham a lot these last 2 weeks and just thinking how much of a biblical success he was but on Earth he left his VERY comfortable life to live in a tent for the rest of his life he didn’t even see the kingdom ( both the physcial land of Canaan and the spiritual God’s kingdom) that God was talking about. If I had been Abraham and God had told me his going to build a nation from my womb I would have expected to be a Queen of a nation or something, but I appreciated Abraham because it is at that moment I realised that he was not thinking of himself he was thinking of God and His perfect Kingdom.
I don’t need to concern myself with who is seeing these posts or how many followers I have or how holy or spiritual I am in comparison to so-and-so because I know the Holy Spirit is molding me into the perfection that God sees inside of me. My focus is on revealing the glory of God to all mankind ( wow, as I wrote that sentence I think I’ve just found my purpose) the limelight is not on me it’s on God and his Kingdom, I wanted to return to that same relationship and even further which I had a year ago and I want you to also follow me not because of me but because your seeing God —> your following not because you see another sheep, but because you see the shepherd … am I making sense????
There is something which Tom wrote in the lessons and it is this:
” The church has focused so much on just getting into the kingdom through salvation, but have little understanding of how the kingdom works and what to do when we are in the kingdom”
I think this is sadly true, and I am looking at myself when I say this, living in the kingdom is seldom taught and it is not something we have to wait till we get to heaven to do, Please read the Book of John to witness Jesus living in the Kingdom whilst still on Earth or alternativley check out the ‘Fall for Christ series’.
I know I have just been rambling about a lot of things, and have commented little from the Lesson 7 Kingdom Worship, but the truth is this is my recap of what I’ve learnt from reading the series so far and I can write whatever I like.
This is my recap of lesson 6 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 6.
Key Scripture is take from Hebrews 8:6
But Jesus has now obtained s superior ministry, and to that degree He is the mediator of a better covenant, which has been legally enacted on better promises.
Covenants between nations or kingdoms in ancient years where there as a source of Protection and preservation particularly for weaker nations who wanted to protect themselves from potential attackers, a source of Financial security, Exchange and Love
Covenant has the idea that everything that belongs to the one covenant partner belongs respectively to the other, they become inseparably linked, almost indistinguishable from one another… [it] gives us the potential to become almost indistinguishable from God…when people meet us, they see the Christ in us
when people entered into a covenant they would do this through a blood sacrifice, often slitting their wrist and drinking one anothers blood , by doing so they would be saying “now we are one”. Through the sacrifice of Jesus we received the greatest covenant because our covenant is with the one whom we know personally. The objective of the covenant is to exchange lives… God took our life of sin and and gave us His life of righteousness.
COVENANT WORSHIP: There is something interesting that Tom mentions in this section is that worship is our response to God for the revelation of Himself in His covenant… the more you receive from God the more you respond in worship. Last year, when I was trying to understand the Bible more I ended up through the direction of the Holy Spirit studying Hebrew’s 8 and coming to understand what is meant by covenant and what is a tabernacle. Having grown-up in the church these terms wer familiar to me but stillnot fully understood and last year I had fun really learning about the covenant, you can read the article I wrote last year if you click this link.
This is my recap of lesson 5 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 5.
‘BREAKTHROUGH WORSHIPERS 3’: Overcoming the Spirit of Fear
‘BREAKTHROUGH WORSHIPERS 3’: Overcoming the Spirit of Fear
For those of you who often read these blogs you will know that overcoming fear has been my biggest testimony this year and this chapter is about overcoming fear. You can read my story about overcoming fear if you click this link.
Within this lesson, Tom chooses to focus on 5 areas of fear that perhaps all if not most have knowledge about, theses are ; ‘fear of death, of man, failure, of sickness, of poverty and of God’.
Overcoming the fear of death:
I never thought of it in this way but ‘to be absent from the body is literally to be present with the Lord’ ( 2 Corinthians 5:8). When I hear the word death in relation to Christianity, I just think of rejoicing for to me I am reminded that the old me, the me who carried so much dirt is dead, I can no longer associate myself with that person. Most people when they lose a tremendous amount of weight they throw their old clothes away, for what is the point in keeping clothes that no longer suit your new body – NONE- if they do keep an item it is usually a souvenir a reminder of what they had been like, for us this souvenir is the cross. Death is like waving goodbye to the old clothes, it is waving goodbye to the cross which carries all my past present and future burdens so I no longer have to, Jesus removed the sting (fear) of death.
Oh death, where is your sting? O hades, where is your victory?
1 Corinthians 15:55
I just love the scripture found in 1 Corinthians 15:55 for how sarcastic it is, its’ audacity to laugh in the face of something that once terrorised us, it is the full confidence and reassurance in Christ’s sacrifice that when he said IT IS DONE at the cross, Christ really did mean that he had completed his mission, death and hades were now buried they have no power over us anymore. The bravado we now have knowing they own nothing, their stings and their victories are now rotting at the cross.
I am He who lives, and was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. And I have the keys of Hades and of Death.
The devil no longer has access to death and hades as Jesus is the one who holds the key to life and death.
Overcoming the Fear of Man
This is when we hold man to be of greater statute than God. The contrast is to trust the Lord God.
Overcoming the fear of failure
This was something that God addressed in me, it wasn’t that I was comparing myself to others ( plus I didn’t have any social media accounts to compare to), but it was that I was comparing against where I thought I would be, either way, I was lost and had no clue where to go next ( you can read my story if you click on Link A and Link B.
Recently, I have been thinking about Abraham a lot and how God told him to leave his good life and go – to where!!?!!? would have been my first question. We tend to read about these stories in hindsight knowing what was to come for Abraham but during that moment Abraham had no clue where God was taking him in fact for the rest of his life Abraham lived as a wanderer in the land of Canaan, a traveller by today’s’ standards, Abraham wasn’t concerned about where his next meal would come from or what tomorrow would look like he just knew that God did not send him to the wilderness ( Canaan) to leave him destitute. Understanding Abraham’s situation made me reflect upon my own, God has never left me not even for a second why would he leave me now?… just having that knowledge has been a great reassurance to me. Our understanding of success and failure is very different from God’s, in our minds success for Abraham would have been Abraham being made a King in the land of Canaan and any other neighbouring nations living a very comfortable life as King… but God’s wisdom is different from our own and I am constantly being reminded of the wisdom of God found in 2 Chronicles 20, read the chapter if you ever get the opportunity to.
Overcoming the fear of sickness
When our minds are in line with God’s word our bodies begin to respond . In the booklet Tom writes down a few scriptures to meditate on so I’ll include them to this:
“I pray that you may prosper in every way and be in good health, just as your soul prospers” (3 John 1:2)
“I will satisfy him with long life and show him My salvation(Psalm 91:16)
My Son, pay attention to my words; listen closely to my sayings (Proverbs 4:20)
“Right away a man with a serious skin disease came up and knelt before Him, saying “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean”. Reaching out His hand He touched him, saying, “I am willing; be made clean.” Immediately his disease was healed” (Matthew 8: 2-3)
Overcoming the fear of poverty
Call me controversial but I’ve always had the belief that poverty is a sin as that lifestyle is the opposite of the satisfaction that is provided in a Christ abundant lifestyle. Even if I were left with 2 coins in my pocket never for a moment would I think of myself to be in poverty. Take this example: A child of school going age who has no money of his own, does not walk into a shop and think himself poor he doesn’t even look at his own pockets when he enters the shop because he knows there is nothing in his pockets , this same child does not even worry for a single moment when his clothes tear and stain because he knows that there is someone behind him who will cover for his expenses ( *cough* bank of Mom and Dad *cough*). I think because I have had the luxury of being raised as an only child of two parents it was easy for me to be that child mentioned earlier and it is easier for me to just transfer this mentality straight to God, because if God is my dad will he not provide as my parent did? *sometimes it does pay to be the only child 🙂
Embracing the Fear of God
The only fear we should have, is not the fear which we have been mentioning but is the ‘worshipful reverence of all that is God’. Sometimes the message translation can be so far off what other books say but sometimes it gets to the point in a way that others don’t and it does this in Proverbs 1: 7 when trying to explain how to go about fearing God:
Start with God—the first step in learning is bowing down to God
Proverbs 1:7 (MSG)
The first step to having this reverential fear of God is acknowledging that he is of value someone to be worshipped. I’ve written a lot more then expected so I just might finish with a song that I am listening to as I write this sentence