Leader Thoughts

This week we take a break from Titus to focus on worship. Specifically to focus on worshiping in Spirit and in Truth. God desires that our worship be genuine and from our soul. Because of the work of Jesus Christ we are able to worship God fully without boundaries. May we be people that worship Him with our work and the way we live our life.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————— Blog by Dr. Juan Sanchez

The following are some of the basic principles by which we seek to plan and practice corporate worship at High Pointe Baptist Church.

1. True worship is God-centered. We were created to worship, and we are commanded to worship God alone (Exodus 20:3-5; Revelation 22:9) in the ways that He has outlined in Scripture (Ecclesiastes 5:1-7). Therefore, as we prepare our hearts for worship let’s remember that worship is about God, not us.

2. True worship is Christ-focused. Jesus Christ is the image of God, the creator, sustainer, and reconciler of creation, and the head of the church (Colossians 1:15-20). It pleased God to reveal Himself through the Son and to reconcile us to Himself through Jesus’ death. So with the disciples, we worship Jesus (John 20:28); Jesus is the focus of worship because He’s the focus of the Father’s work.

3. True worship is Spirit-empowered. The Bible makes it clear that we are born into this world as children of wrath and dead to God. However, by grace through faith (Ephesians 2:1-10), we are made alive to God and dead to sin (Romans 6:1-14). Only those who have been made alive by the power of the Holy Spirit can truly worship God; these are the true worshipers God seeks (John 4:21-24).

4. True worship is Word-based. God’s Word (the Bible) is the basis of everything we do in worship (announcements, welcome, singing, praying, preaching, etc.). Why? Because God works by His Word. He created by His Word (Genesis 1); He sustains His creation by the Word of His power (Hebrews 1:3); He came into this world as the Word (John 1:1); He saves us by the power of His Word (Romans 1:16). Preaching is the primary form of the Word in our worship because this is the model Jesus and His disciples left us (Luke 4:43; Romans 10:14-15) and because we are commanded to preach the Word until Christ returns (2 Timothy 4:1-2).

5. True worship engages both mind and heart. True worship requires that we engage God with our minds as we study His Word and seek to grow in the knowledge of Jesus Christ. At the same time, it requires that we engage God with our hearts as the fullness of the Holy Spirit in our lives overflows and causes us to praise God in complete delight. This means that our worship will be passionate and Spirit-filled because it is based on the truth of our Lord Jesus Christ. This is what it means to worship God in spirit and truth (John 4:24).

6. True worship is edifying. Though worship is about God and not us, true worship will build up believers in both mind and heart “until we all attain the unity of the faith, and the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man” (Ephesians 4:11-13). In other words, though worship is all about God, it will benefit us and cause us to grow in our love for Him and one another, for worship has both a vertical (Godward) and a horizontal (corporate) direction.

7. True worship is more than Sunday. As believers in Christ, we are not to neglect gathering together (Hebrews 10:24-25). However, true worship is an everyday matter. We are to give our entire lives over to God as living and holy sacrifices (Romans 12:1-2). That means we worship God in how we live, work and play every single day of our lives.

Home Group Guide

OPENING

When and where in your life did you feel most connected to God? What was the experience or environment that lead to this?

CONVERSATION

Read: John 4: 1-26

In a quick read of this story, what are some aspects of the story that really stand out to you?

Jesus reveals to this woman that He is the Messiah. What does it tell us about God that he would choose to reveal something so important to her?

In verse 19-20 the woman points to two locations that her people worship at and where the Jewish people would worship. Do you believe that people today can be guilty of limiting their worship to a time and place? How so?

Say something like: It’s really easy to come to a church building on a Sunday morning and worship God but then our daily lives through the week. look very different.

What would our life look like or how would it be different if we saw our work as worship?

It’s encouraging that this presence of God is not tied to a mountain or a temple in a city a long way away. God is everywhere. Are their areas of your life that we don’t recognize God in or at least choose not to worship there? (This maybe a job that we are displeased with, this maybe road rage, or simply in curtain friendship groups)

What do you believe it means that God desires worshipers to worship in Spirit and Truth? How does Jesus’ life change the way that people are able to worship God?

Say something like: It’s because of the death and resurrection of Jesus that you are I are granted access to approach God with our worship with clean hearts.

Do you believe that you worship God with that kind of freedom? Why or why not?

PRAYER

Take time and ask that God will reveal to our hearts and lead us to repentance in area that we don’t worship Him in our life. May we come before Him with freedom because of the work He has done.