Monday, March 11, 2013

Definitions of Worship- Part 1

As the subject of this series, I have decided to define six words on worship from the scriptures.  Adore, Minister, and Obedience from the Old Testament, and Glorify, Sacrifice, and Devotion from the New Testament.  The goal of this is not to be “all inclusive,” but rather, give a brief overview of each word respectively.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines the word Adore as to worship or honor as a deity or as divine; to regard with loving admiration and devotion; to express reverence and homage.”[1] Some of the ways adoration occurred is found in the Old Testament when the Israelites took off their shoes (Ex 3:5 and Josh. 5:15[2]), and also prostrated themselves before the Lord (Gen. 17:3, Ps. 95:6, and Is: 44:15). We will discuss the word Adore, as well as it’s derivative, adoration.
The Israelites were first discovering what worship was all about when God began to manifest Himself with Moses.  His first encounter with the Divine was when the Lord revealed His presence in the burning bush and told him to take off his shoes, since the place he was standing was now ‘holy ground.’ (Ex. 3:5)  This act of removing his shoes was to show awe and homage before the Creator…not to mention overwhelming fear of what was taking place.   
 “Worship in the Old Testament is an attitude of homage or adoration to God as a great king….  Adoration was not a form of intimacy with God or an indication of special affection towards him, but rather an expression of awe or grateful submission.”[3]
In the Old Testament, we find that the word Adore is used in Psalm 119:2, 10, and 68, as well as the Song of Solomon (1:4). “Take me away with you--let us hurry! Let the king bring me into his chambers. Friends we rejoice and delight in you; we will praise your love more than wine. Beloved How right they are to adore you!”  (SS 1:4).
To adore the One True God, we follow the admonition of the First Commandment: “You shall have no other gods before Me.”  When we commit our heart, mind and soul to the great King of Kings, we find that we separate ourselves from all other earthly influence and other gods in our lives.
According to Father John Hardon, “Adoration is the recognition with our minds of who God is and the response with our wills to this recognition.”[4]  I contend that worship is not what we experience in the natural, but rather the supernatural. Not with just our minds, but with our souls.  And, when God reveals Himself to us, whether through dreams, visions, circumstances, prayer, or deep impressions of the Spirit, our response should be to worship Him with humility and adoration. 

[1] Encyclopedia Britannica Company, Merriam Webster Online, Incorporated Merriam Webster, 2010, (accessed Aug 28, 2010).
[2]  Zondervan, The Holy Bible, NIV, ed. Kenneth Barker (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan Bible Publishing, 1985).
[3] David Peterson, Engaging With God (Downers Grove, Il: IVP Academic, 1992), 72-73.

[4] Rev. John Hardon, The Real Presence Association, Inter Mirifica, 1999, (accessed Aug 28, 2010), ¶ 4

No comments:

Post a Comment