Conclusion

Living Your True Purpose (Header)

Experiencing the Life of a True Worshiper

Experiencing the Life of a True Worshiper

I Worship You, by CCM group MercyMe, is from the 2002 debut album entitled Almost There. Though this song was never released as a single, World 1 it helped to establish the style and character of music that has kept MercyMe at the top of the CCM charts for more than twelve years. In fact, Almost There is considered the number four best selling album from its decade (2000-2009).

I Worship You, is all about experiencing the life of a true worshiper on a daily basis. It’s about what it can feel like to worship God in all circumstances and life events. It is a song of genuine, godly worship, which is exactly what we have been discussing in this series.

As we close out this simple study on experiencing the life of a true worshiper, we will quickly recap what we have learned so that you can easily recall our various topics of interest. Hopefully this recap will also inspire you to revisit some of these articles and move you to grow in your relationship with God on a daily basis.

Articles One and Two dealt primarily with our first acts of worship — salvation and water baptism. Before we can begin a day-to-day relationship with God, we must first have placed our faith in His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ (Romans 10:9-10), and have been obedient to His command to be baptized (John 3:5).

Articles Three and Four explored the call of all worshipers of God to fulfill the “Great Commission” (Matthew 28:18-20). To go through out the world testifying of Christ’s Gospel message and baptizing those who would believe, and to do so by CO-laboring with other believers, in spite of their denominational background (1 Corinthians 3:1-11). You see the true Church, the “Body of Christ,” is not filled with members from any one Christian denomination. No! The Church is made up of true worshipers from all Christian denominations, and we must work together for the good of the kingdom of God.

Articles Five and Six were all about serving mankind, as Christ instructed us to, and suffering as Christ suffered. Though Christ came primarily to seek and to save mankind from their sinful nature (Luke 19:10), He also came as a servant of humanity. He wanted to be an example to us, revealing how we can bring His hope to the hopeless and extend His help to the helpless (Mark 10:45). Ultimately, our serving others and our suffering as Christ suffered will make us more like Him.

Articles Seven and Eight revealed to us the importance of spending time in God’s Word and in prayer. God’s Word was given in written form to teach us, guide us, and grow us to be more like Jesus Christ (2 Timothy 3:16-17). This can only be done by our spending time reading it, studying it, and applying what we’ve have learned. And we must also pray, as God’s power flows from Himself into our lives through prayer (James 4:10). Prayer is as essential to our daily relationship with God, as is the reading of God’s Word.

Articles Nine and Ten dealt with living an abundant life in Christ and with gathering to worship God in a corporate environment. God’s purpose for humanity was to allow us to experience a life full of His Spirit, but we rejected His purpose. To get that life back, we must dedicate ourselves to living our lives for the sake of Christ — daily — in all that we do (Romans 12:11). True believers are also tasked with helping each other grow into true worshipers of God (Hebrews 10:24-25). Christians cannot accomplish this duty if they remain separated from one another. This work can only be completed if we are faithful to gather before God on a weekly basis.

Articles Eleven and Twelve disclose to us the importance of giving, especially the giving of God’s love. You see, part of our call from God, to serve each other and to suffer as His Son suffered, is so that we can learn the art of giving. Christ served mankind to give away His love, and Christ suffered for the same reason (Matthew 20:25-28). Love — God’s love — is the reason we are instructed to give, and one of the greatest ways that we can model this godly giving of love is through our romantic relationships. God designed the marriage relationship to be a physical picture of His love for the redeemed (Ephesians 5:22-32).

Articles Thirteen and Fourteen taught concerning how we should care for our physical and spiritual bodies, as well as about celebrating God in our music. Since Christians are considered by God to be members of Christ’s body, we must maintain our health and wellness in order to have the strength and energy to fulfill our calling — to fulfill our duty. It is imperative that Christians — true worshipers of God — maintain both their physical and spiritual health and wellness (Romans 12:1-2; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20; 3 John 1:2). This in turn will allow us the strength to testify of God’s grace and loving kindness towards us through our singing. Though singing is not worship, as a whole, it is an important vessel for expressing our devotion to God (Psalm 95:1; Colossians 3:16).

“Confession” and “Forgiveness” were the topics of Articles Fifteen and Sixteen. We learned that confession was more than an admission of wrong doing, but that it was also a statement of one’s beliefs — a testimonial. Through this act of worship we can confess Christ as our Lord, and testify to others of His Gospel message (Matthew 10:32-33; Romans 10:9). Confession also leads us to receiving forgiveness. Forgiveness grants us access to freedom. Freedom from bitterness and hate; freedom to live and to love. Forgiveness is divine, and it is strong enough to cover over all wrongdoings. All we need do is accept it (1 John 1:9), and then give it to others (Mark 11:25).

Articles Seventeen and Eighteen covered the subjects of rejoicing and having a right attitude. A true worshiper of God rejoices over what God is doing, not only in their own life, but in the lives of other believers (Deuteronomy 12:7). Rejoicing rightly prevents us from getting prideful and allows us to celebrate achievements and yet remain humble. A right attitude also influences our ability to rejoice correctly and remain humble. An attitude that is focused on God and His characteristics will remain healthy and positive (Philippians 2:5-8), while an attitude that focuses on self will cause heartache and undo pain.

There you have it, all eighteen topics neatly outlined for further review and study. I hope that if you haven’t followed along faithfully that you will consider going back through and studying further these essential acts of worship. If you have been with us throughout the series, then I pray that you would take the time to review these subjects and apply them to your daily relationship with God.

William Barclay, a Scottish author, minister, professor of theology, radio and television presenter, is credited with having said this about speaking the truth. He said, “Telling the truth demands a deliberate effort.” In like manner, so does living the truth. We must take the time and make the effort to live the life we were purposed to live. God deliberately made us for His pleasure, and we rejected His love. Now we, who have placed our faith and trust in Jesus Christ, must make a deliberate effort to embrace God’s truth, speak of God’s truth, and live God’s truth. If we do; if we endure to remain faithful to God’s plan for our lives, then we will see God’s purpose grow in us and shine forth from us.

I’ll leave you with one last quote from William Barclay: “Endurance is not just the ability to bare a hard thing, but to turn it into glory.” Endure the life of a true worshiper. Bare the sufferings of life, as Christ did, and watch God turn you into a beacon that shines His glory throughout the world.

Living Your True Purpose by J. Scott Harden is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at jasonmin.wordpress.com.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://www.jsnmin.org.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

The “NIV” and “New International Version” trademarks are registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by International Bible Society. Use of either trademark requires the permission of International Bible Society.

I Worship You lyrics and music written by Regie Glenn Hamm and Peter Kipley. Copyright © 2002 Word Entertainment and Curb Records.

Video made available by Jason Ministries, Word Entertainment, and Curb Records; Copyright © 2014 All Rights Reserved.

If your church or organization would like to talk with J. Scott Harden about a speaking engagement, or a writing project, please get in touch with Mr. Harden through Jason MinistriesTwitter account or Facebook page.

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Article 9

Living Your True Purpose (Header)

Living Your True Purpose (Article 9)More To This Life, by CCM artist Steven Curtis Chapman, was released in 1989. It was from Steven’s third studio album, which bore the same name. Preaching 1 The song is about every day life, and how mundane it all can become when we don’t allow Christ to rule our lives.

Humanity was never meant to live a life of monotony. We were never meant to experience boredom, by living out a day-to-day routine that is filled with tiresome, uninteresting, repetitive actions. Life simply was never intended to be commonplace, yet for many of us living a “modern” twenty-first century lifestyle that is exactly what we are experiencing — pure dull-drum.

So why is it that mankind is all too familiar with all things plain and ordinary? Because most of us live out our every day lives from a purely physical perspective. And what’s worse is that many who claim to be Christians — people who have supposedly given themselves over to living a life that would resemble the life of Christ — are living out such unexciting lives. Hear me people; God did not create you to be mediocre, He created you to live a life full of purpose.

God’s purpose for humanity was to allow us to experience a life full of His Spirit. To bask in the glorious presence of our Creator. Our labor was to be the simple task of ruling and tending the rest of creation (Genesis 1:26-28, 2:15). But because we allowed our own selfish desires to interfere with God’s plan, we lost our way and in the process our life of abundance, too (Genesis 3).

So, God made a way for us to return to Him, and to again experience that life of abundance. Jesus Christ became the way for mankind to be restored to God’s original purpose. Jesus did so by becoming a blood sacrifice that would pay our debt of death, which we owed for choosing to be selfish and living a life of materialism. When we choose to surrender our lives over to Christ, we are choosing to die to our selfish wants and desires, and to embrace the life of a true worshiper, which can never be mundane (John 3:16-17, 14:6; Romans 6:23; 2 Corinthians 5:17).

For a believer, there can never be a secular life and a sacred one. Human-beings only have one life for which to live. God never asks us to compartmentalize our day-to-day lives in this way. We are never to live Monday through Saturday one way, and then live our Sundays another. We are not to live out our professional lives one way, and our home lives differently, nor are we to be contrasting yet again when we enter into the church. No! What ever we choose to do, at any moment of the day, we are to do that task, participate in that mission, fulfill that duty in God’s name. We are to do our jobs and satisfy our promises for the glory of God (Colossians 3:23).

You see, your job may not be directly connected to the church, but that does not mean that your work is less important that that of a pastor, or missionary, or any other cleric. If you are a true believer of Jesus Christ, then anything you do is of the utmost importance. If you follow the teachings of God’s only begotten Son, then you are called to live your life to the glory of your Creator (1 Corinthians 10:31). Once you grasp this understanding, and alter your attitude to model Christ’s, then a humdrum life will never again be one you need to embrace. A life so very abundant in God’s love, grace, and mercy will lift you to a life filled with excitement and new adventures.

So, let’s stop compartmentalizing our lives. Let’s dedicate ourselves to living our lives for the sake of Christ. Let’s surrender ourselves to fulfilling each and every one of our obligations for the glory of God, Almighty. No matter the job you are doing.

Wives, serve your husbands (Ephesians 5:22-24); husbands, rightly lead and love your wives (Ephesians 5:25-27). Moms, serve your families; Dads, rightly lead and love your families. Children obey and serve your parents (Ephesians 6:1-3); parents, rightly lead and love your children. Employees, no matter the business, serve your employers as if your were serving Christ, Himself. Employers, lead and care for your employees just as Christ would lead and care for them. Note these words from the Apostle Paul, which were written to the church in Ephesus:

“Slaves [Employees], obey your earthly masters [employers] with respect and fear, and with sincerity of heart, just as you would obey Christ. Obey them not only to win their favor when their eye is on you, but like slaves of Christ, doing the will of God from your heart. Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men, because you know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does, whether he is slave or free [poor or rich]. And masters [employers], treat your slaves [employees] in the same way. Do not threaten them, since you know that He [God] who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no favoritism with Him.” (Ephesians 6:5-9)

There really is more to this life, than living and dying. There really is more to this life, than monotonous routines and sterile homes. And certainly there is more to this life, than living physically one moment and then living spiritually the next. Simply concede to live as the Apostle Paul instructed the people of Corinth:

“For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died. And He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for Him who died for them and was raised again. So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to Himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And He has committed to us the message of reconciliation. We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making His appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made Him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God.” (1 Corinthians 5:14-21)

Stop thinking of your life as belonging to yourself or the world, and start living your life as one who belongs to the LORD of all. Stop compartmentalizing every facet of the life you have, and start glorifying your Creator in every moment you are given. After all, if you are a true believer, “You know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” (Colossians 3:24)

Living Your True Purpose by J. Scott Harden is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at jasonmin.wordpress.com.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at http://www.jsnmin.org.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

The “NIV” and “New International Version” trademarks are registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by International Bible Society. Use of either trademark requires the permission of International Bible Society.

More To This Life lyrics and music written by Steven Curtis Chapman and Phil L. Naish. Copyright © 1989 Sparrow Records.

Video made available by Jason Ministries and Sparrow Records; Copyright © 1992 All Rights Reserved.

If your church or organization would like to talk with J. Scott Harden about a speaking engagement, or a writing project, please get in touch with Mr. Harden through Jason MinistriesTwitter account or Facebook page.

Article V, part 2


In our last post we were discussing the first three of eight specific reasons why we needed to glorify and worship God daily. The first reason being that glorifying and worshiping God connects us to Him. Second, we need to glorify and worship God because in doing so we focus our attention away from ourselves and towards God. Thirdly, our need to glorify and worship God testifies of God’s goodness and mercy.

The fourth reason for glorifying and worshiping God is to reflect His glory to the lost. Much in the same way our worship is our testimony of the Father’s goodness and mercy to nonbelievers, so is it also a reflection of His glory. Remember, Paul instructed us to “live as children of light,” but what is the source of that “light”? It’s God’s light, God’s glory shining from Himself through us and into a dark, dark world. Even Jesus, God’s Son, taught this about Himself in John 8:54-55a, “If I glorify myself, my glory means nothing. My Father, whom you claim as your God, is the one who glorifies me. Though you do not know him, I know him.” Jesus, in worshiping the Father, reflected God’s glory into this sinful world, and even though people didn’t comprehend what they were experiencing was of God, they could still see the “light.” Odd thing about light — it’s blinding to some and illumination for others, and the more we as true worshipers allow ourselves to reflect God’s glory, the more like Him we become (2 Corinthians 3:18).

Reason number five: we need to glorify and worship God because doing so maintains joy in our lives. Again, as we learned in our article on “joy,” only in the presence of God can we experience true joy (Psalm 16:11); and when the justified are in His presence, they can’t help but to glorify and worship the God of mercy and grace. Look with me at Psalm 5:11-12:

But let all who take refuge in you [God] be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you. For surely, O Lord, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield.

Do you want to live rightly, with God’s blessings on your life? Do you want to be filled with real joy and have your eyes shine with it? Then do as the psalmist says above and take refuge in God; love everything about Him and then, as he also wrote in Psalm 19, verse 8, God will in turn cover you (clothe you, as we were intended) with His glory and you will be blessed.

The sixth reason we need to glorify and worship God is because it reminds us of God’s sovereignty. Just as many psalms declare the goodness and mercy of our Creator, they also emote of His awesome power and sovereignty. You can see it themed in Psalm 22: 25-28, as the psalmist states, “dominion belongs to the Lord.” You can read of it in Psalm 73:27-28 and Psalm 103:19-22, but I truly like the way it is written in Psalm 71:16-18. Read with me:

I will come and proclaim your mighty acts, O Sovereign Lord; I will proclaim your righteousness, yours alone. Since my youth, O God, you have taught me, and to this day I declare your marvelous deeds. Even when I am old and gray, do not forsake me, O God, till I declare your power to the next generation, your might to all who are to come.

Did you comprehend that? You are sovereign, O God! Let me live as long as possible so I can declare it to as many as possible. Imagine, if we all prayed that prayer and lived it, what life would be like.

Seventh, our need to glorify and worship God allows all of creation to fulfill its purpose. Most of us recognize Psalm 19:1 when we hear it, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.” Some may recognize the words penned in Psalm 66:1-4:

Shout with joy to God, all the earth! Sing the glory of his name; make his praise glorious! Say to God, “How awesome are your deeds! So great is your power that your enemies cringe before you. All the earth bows down to you; they sing praise to you, they sing praise to your name.”

But how can the heavens declare anything? How can the skies proclaim God or the earth sing of His glorious name? Simple. You and I must do it. Humanity is the voice of creation. The heavens, the skies, the earth, the oceans, and all of the creatures on the earth and in the oceans (Psalm 69:34) are the visual portion of this huge and very corporate worship service known as life. Mankind, we are the voice ringing out in sweet songs of praise and adoration to our Creator, our Giver of life. If we don’t fulfill our purpose and remain vocal with our worship of God the Father, then God will give our job over to His other creations (Luke 19:40). (I really don’t think God prefers “rock” music when He is used to hearing choirs of angels. All right; a bad pun, I’ll admit it; and no slant is being made regarding contemporary Christian music, either, but do you seriously want to be showed up by a bunch of stones?)

I love the words Bob Hartman, guitarist and songwriter for the Christian rock group Petra, wrote for the song “Somebody’s Gonna Praise His Name.” The song was released on the album On Fire, and the lyrics of the chorus read like this, “Somebody’s gonna praise His name. Somebody’s gonna call Him Lord. It’ll either be you and me, or it’s gonna be a rock or tree. Somebody, somewhere is gonna praise His name.” To which he says at the end, “And it’s gonna be me.” Bob Hartman and the rest of Petra seem to know their purpose and have acted on it. Will you join them?

Lastly, the eighth reason we need to glorify and worship God is to rightly respond to God’s calling on our lives. Again, our calling, God’s perfect will for humanity — our purpose, more than anything else under the sun — is to glorify and worship Almighty God. The apostle Paul, in his first letter to the church in Thessalonica, stated, “Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). “Be joyful,” “pray continually,” “give thanks in all circumstances” are all acts of worship. Each is a crucial key to unlocking and revealing God’s glory in our lives; revealing the Father’s will for mankind — worship. God’s will is not so much about what you will do with your life physically. God’s will isn’t about whether you should or should not be in a particular profession, though living by His statutes may clearly dictate a profession to you and keep you from choosing another. It’s about living your life glorifying and worshiping your Creator.

Look with me at 1 Corinthians 10:31, which says, “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” Paul, at this point in his first letter to the church at Corinth, was dealing with an issue of whether people should or should not eat meat that had been sacrificed to a pagan god. Paul explained that if that meat was eaten simply because of hunger, then there was no harm; but if it was eaten and caused them or someone weaker in the faith to get caught up in idol worship, then it was wrong. There was an attitude involved here (remember we discussed having an attitude of worship in Article 3); a motivation. Now, let’s apply this same attitude/motivation to our overall purpose of worship. No matter what you choose to do for a living, do it with the sole motivation of glorifying God, but if your career choice prevents this for some reason, then you should choose another and do so quickly. If we live our lives in fellowship with our Creator (1 John 1:3-4) and worship Him, then His overall will for us to glorify Him will guide us in correctly choosing our spouse, friends, job(s), food, anything and everything. Choosing to live our lives glorifying God is choosing to be holy (set apart). This is why we are urged by both Paul and our Lord, Jesus Christ, throughout the New Testament to worship God rightly. In doing so, we can finally experience our purpose and become true worshipers of God (Matthew 25:14-30; Ephesians 4:1-6; 2 Thessalonians 1:11-12).

Let’s quickly review our eight reasons for seeking out our purpose and worshiping God daily:

Connects the Creator to His creation
Focuses our attention on God
Testifies of God’s goodness and mercy
Reflects God’s glory to the nonbeliever
Maintains joy in our lives
Reminds us of God’s sovereignty
Allows all of creation to fulfill its purpose
Rightly responds to God’s calling

How was that for simple, yet complicated? I know it will take self-discipline and maybe even the discipline of God and other believers to get us to where we really can live out our purpose of worshiping God daily, but the concept is still really quite simple. Our physical limitations and our imperfections are what make it seem so complicated.

Joshua didn’t easily accomplish his worship of the Father either. Each one of these eight reasons for seeking out and worshiping God can be found in Joshua’s story, but none were devoid of struggle. Read over the book of Joshua, if you haven’t yet. Look back over Article 1 and re-examine the five megathemes to see how often the eight reasons listed above appear; take note of the struggles each opportunity for worship brought about in each of the five megathemes.

If I could somehow sum up this whole article in one sentence, it would be this: the dawn of forever is when you place your faith in Christ, but abundant life begins when you fulfill your purpose and become a true worshiper of God.

Three walls have now been erected; onward we go to constructing the fourth and final wall in our temple of worship.

The Joshua Project by J.Scott Harden is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
Based on a work at jasonmin.wordpress.com.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at https://jasonmin.wordpress.com/.

Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan Publishing House. All rights reserved.

The “NIV” and “New International Version” trademarks are registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by International Bible Society. Use of either trademark requires the permission of International Bible Society.

Somebody’s Gonna Praise His Name lyrics and music written by Bob Hartman (Based on Luke 19:40; Psalms 69:34, 148:9). Copyright © 1988 Star Song Music.
If you want to use these lyrics, please contact the authors, artists or labs.

If your church or organization would like to talk with J. Scott Harden about a speaking engagement, or a writing project, please get in touch with Mr. Harden through Jason MinistriesTwitter account or Facebook page.

Article V, part 1


Have you ever asked the questions, “Why am I here?” “Why did God create me?” Or, perhaps you have asked this popular question: “What is my purpose in life?” And how many of you ended up more frustrated than before you asked because no one seemed capable of answering any of these questions for you?

Well, if you or someone you know is looking for the answers to these questions, search no more. I’m about to answer them for you and the answer is so simple it may be hard to comprehend. Are you ready? The answer is this — for God’s glory!

“Ah, say again,” you ask? Yes, you heard right, humanity was created to glorify God. Or, to simplify it into one word — worship!

You and I and all of humanity, in fact all of creation, from the beginning of time until now and moving forward throughout eternity, were made to glorify and worship the Lord God Jehovah — our Creator (Colossians 1:16).

Too easy of an answer for you to accept? Then we’ll complicate it by looking at this truth more deeply (spoiler alert: it will still be simple, but let’s continue).

Let’s begin by examining the definition of the word “purpose” (if we can comprehend its meaning, then we will more easily grasp why we care so much to know we have one and what it is). “Purpose,” according to The Merriam-Webster dictionary, is “(noun) the reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists; a person’s sense of resolve or determination.” Did you catch that all important phrase, “the reason”? Hold on to that as we look to the definition of purpose as written in The Life Application Study Bible (NIV), which states it as: “(verb) intention; objective; God’s predetermined will.” Purpose is God’s reason (noun) for His objective or predetermined will (verb), or it is God’s reason for His objective or predetermined will to take place. God chose to create life, humanity in particular, for His glory (Colossians 1:16-17; Revelation 4:11), therefore creation declares His glory and worships God (Psalm 19:1; 148:5).

Do you recall the formulas from Article 2? God’s attributes (faith, hope, and love) plus our acknowledging God’s attributes equals our worshiping God. Well, in like manner, God purposed for mankind “life” and not just a mere existence either; God purposed for us all “abundant life.” Human beings simply need to acknowledge that God has intended for them “abundant life” and then allow themselves to experience true worship — our purpose.

The famous writer and lecturer Helen Keller understood this principle of worship. Despite being both deaf and blind, Helen was able to conquer her disabilities and pen these words regarding “purpose.” She wrote, “Many people have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.” Think about that for a moment . . . “a worthy purpose.” No one is more worthy to be glorified, praised, and worshiped than our Creator! Allowing yourself to be wrapped in God’s glory, worshiping Him, is every person’s “worthy purpose.” Oh, the true happiness [joy] that will flood your soul!

Stop making life harder than it already is. Sin has wreaked enough havoc on mankind without adding in the pressure of seeking out one’s purpose or destiny. No matter what you choose to be or do in life, know that all that really matters is that you recognize God the Father purposed abundant life for you — abundant life that can only exist in you via your relationship with His Son, Jesus Christ. Read John 10:10b with me: “I [Jesus Christ] have come that they [humanity] may have life, and have it to the full [abundantly].”

Now, “abundant life” is not to say that God will give you great physical well-being or physical stature or physical wealth or great physical anything. No! God is speaking in regard to our spirits being enriched by fulfilling our purpose to glorify and worship Him. Human beings, you see, are spiritual beings more so than they are physical beings. Therefore, we must consider the spiritual implications involved.

Best-selling author and theologian C.S. Lewis understood this fact. Mr. Lewis is quoted as having said, “You don’t have a soul. You are a soul. You have a body.” Scripture even tells us we are created in God’s image (Genesis 1:27). God is not physical in His makeup, but spiritual. So the spiritual implications must be considered here, not the physical, and our physical bodies being made comfortable and happy on earth is not necessarily going to be revealed to us as part of our purpose. Can we experience such blessings? Yes; but don’t forget what we discussed in Article 4 regarding suffering — it’s normal (1 Peter 4:12-13). A prominent position in society, great wealth, and perfect health are perks or rewards some get to enjoy along life’s journey, but these things should never be expected nor should they be taken for granted. That’s why we call them “blessings.” They are special and out of the ordinary.

So, having been made in God’s image, we must realize and come to terms with the fact that we are spiritual beings more so than physical beings. And knowing this, we must begin in our lives the process of seeking out our “worthy purpose,” which is to glorify and worship God, thus enabling us to live life abundantly as it was intended. But why, you may ask, do we need to glorify and worship God? And, why does God desire this type of relationship with us? Well, there are actually eight specific reasons why we need to do so, and the same eight also explain why God desires our daily worship and glorification of Him. Let’s look at each one.

The first reason we need to glorify and worship God is because it connects us to Him. Jehovah never meant for us to be separated from Himself. We were meant to be in God’s presence, covered by His glory (Psalm 8:4-5) and reflecting His righteousness (Proverbs 4:18; Romans 1:14-17), as I stated earlier in Article 2, but Jehovah can’t cover us in His glory if we are disconnected, and we can’t reflect His glory if we are distant; both of which are caused by our sin, as explained in Article 4. Sin disconnected all of creation from God, the Creator of life, but Christ bridged that gap between God and humanity via His death and resurrection, thus allowing us to reconnect with the Father through faith in Christ. Worshiping the Father, through our relationship with Christ, reconnects us to our Creator, who then regains connection with His creation (Psalm 95:6-8a).

Second, we need to glorify and worship God because in doing so we focus our attention away from ourselves and towards God. In fact, this is the essence of true worship — giving God all our attention. David did this in many of the psalms he wrote. Like Psalm 29:1-2, “Ascribe to the Lord, O mighty ones, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name; worship the Lord in the splendor of His holiness.” David doted on his Lord, as a young woman dotes over a first love. As she can think and speak of no other, so too was David totally focused on God, the Father. Another example is Psalm 96:7-9, which reads:

Ascribe to the Lord, O families of nations, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name; bring an offering and come into His courts. Worship the Lord in the splendor of His holiness; tremble before Him, all the earth.

When was the last time you were in the presence of the Almighty, totally focused on Him, doting on your Creator? If you can quickly recall the time, then you are living out this principle of worship; if not . . . maybe you should spend some special time with God being “still” (Psalm 46:10) and realizing your purpose.

Third, our need to glorify and worship God testifies of God’s goodness and mercy. If God’s wonderful attributes of faith, hope, and love cause us to worship Him when in His presence, then it stands to reason that those same godly attributes, when seen in our lives through our worship of the Father, will testify of them as well (Psalm 145:1-21). It’s the living out of these godly attributes that testifies and then attracts the nonbelievers of the world to consider a relationship with God. Paul wrote in Ephesians 5:8, “For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light.” In other words, shine forth God’s attributes of faithfulness, hope, and above all else — love.

There are many psalms that reflect the truth that God is good and merciful, but none so well-worded as the Twenty-third Psalm. Read with me and meditate on these words:

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul. He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

The fourth reason for glorifying and worshiping God is to reflect His glory to the lost. We’ll study this reason we need to glorify and worship God, and the other four remaining reasons, more closely the next time we post.

Two walls have now been erected; stay with us as we continue constructing the third wall of our temple of worship.

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