Many Christians have a limited view of worship. They think of it primarily in terms of a feeling, often facilitated through music.
To be sure, our worship of Christ should be driven by a true love for God that includes feelings. And yes, music is a incredibly significant aspect of worship.
But our worship—personal and corporate—is so much more than many of us consider.
The word worship comes from the old English word, worthship. It means “to ascribe worth to.” The Hebrew word for worship, shachah, means “to bow down, to pay homage.”
We worship what we believe is worthy, and we do it with both our attitudes and actions.
We worship what we believe is worthy, and we do it with both our attitudes and actions. Click To Tweet
We see worship all throughout the Christmas story—from Mary’s surrender to the wisemen’s gifts.
And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him: and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts; gold, and frankincense, and myrrh. (Matthew 2:11)
So how can we make this Christmas season rich in worship? There are at least four sacrifices every believer can offer to Christ in worship.There are at least four sacrifices every believer can offer to Christ in worship. Click To Tweet
As you read the Scriptures and think through the questions below, I encourage you to first consider them personally. How can you—both in your own life and as you gather with your church family on Sundays—spend this Christmas season ascribing worth to Christ?
And then, if you are a local church leader, I encourage you to consider how you can more fully encourage others in Christ-focused worship this Christmas season.
1. Personal surrender
Surrender is embedded in the Christmas story. Mary surrendered when she told the angel, “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word” (Luke 1:38). Jesus surrendered to the will of the Father as He “made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men” (Philippians 2:7).
You and I can offer ourselves to Christ as a living sacrifice—a full decision of worship.
I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. (Romans 12:1)
- Is there anything you are holding back from Christ?
- How do faith and surrender relate?
- Does your lifestyle and habits reflect a living sacrifice to Christ?
We worship Christ when we praise Him for who He is and what He does for us.
By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. (Hebrews13:15)
Music is one of God’s gifts to enable our praise. But God’s Word is as well. The Old Testament Israelites worshiped God by singing His Word in psalms.
Our songs should be rich in scriptural truths and should elevate Christ and His work in our lives.
(Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;” (Ephesians 5:19)
Additionally, reading psalms of praise as a prayer to the Lord is one of the best ways we can praise God.
- Are you daily praising the Lord through His Word?
- When you gather with your church family in worship and song, do you praise the Lord from your heart?
- If you are involved in preparing for corporate worship, how can you more effectively focus the congregation’s attention on Christ?
Not only is prayer the means through which we worship with praise, but bringing our needs to God in prayer is also an act of faith and worship.
Our prayers are precious to God, and He receives them as perfume ascending to His throne.
And when he had taken the book, the four beasts and four and twenty elders fell down before the Lamb, having every one of them harps, and golden vials full of odours, which are the prayers of saints. (Revelation 5:8)
- Is your prayer life consistent?
- What is one way you could strengthen your prayer life this month?
- Is prayer a significant part of your church services and fellowship times?
As we give to the Lord by supporting His work and giving to others, our gifts are, like our prayers, fragrant to God—“a sacrifice acceptable, well-pleasing to God.”
Now ye Philippians know also, that in the beginning of the gospel, when I departed from Macedonia, no church communicated with me as concerning giving and receiving, but ye only. For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my necessity. Not because I desire a gift: but I desire fruit that may abound to your account. But I have all, and abound: I am full, having received of Epaphroditus the things which were sent from you, an odour of a sweet smell, a sacrifice acceptable, well pleasing to God. (Philippians 4:15–18)
- Are you giving generously and sacrificially to the furtherance of the gopsel?
- Does your giving reflect your stated believe in the worth of Christ and His gospel?
- Are you emphasizing the importance of giving as an act of worship to your church family?
Jesus is worthy of our worship. He is worthy of our deepest devotion and our highest praise. May our attitudes and actions through this Christmas season reflect the worth we ascribe to His name!
Get posts delivered to your inbox.
Subscribe today and receive a FREE minibook download: Striving Together for the Cause of Christ.