Oh, praise the LORD, all you servants of the LORD, you who serve at night in the house of the LORD.
~Psalm 134:1, NLT
Man’s chief work is the praise of God.
Psalm 134 is the last of the ascent Psalms and is basically a benediction or a blessing on the pilgrims who are about to return home. David instituted 24 hours worship. The Levites were divided into 24 groups and worked in shifts enabling them to minister day and night. There was praise and worship throughout the day and the night. The night praise service was a favorite of pilgrims who would spend their last night at the Temple listening to the Levitical choir before embarking on their journey at first light.
A big concerns of most Baptist is: “When will the worship service end?” To the Jews, it did not end. You were free to come and go as you liked but the Levites were there ministering 24-7. Worship never ceased. I think it is a picture of heaven. A lot of well know people such as John MacArthur do not like modern praise songs or bands. MacArthur is not riding a white horse: Wiersbe and Lawson sing the same tune. They are all highly intelligent men but I think they are wrong on this issue. The music is not the issue. Kent Hughes had this to say: “Much of worship these days is a subtle form of entertainment with the common assumption being…Worship is to meet my needs which makes it primarily about me. Such worship is void of participators and filled with uncommitted spectators who sit silently in the pew and grade the performance of those on stage.”
I think Hughes makes some very valid points so long as we understand, our ‘meism’ has nothing to do with the style of music. You can sing anthems, hymns and have responsive reading and still be stuck on yourself. Obviously the key to worship is FOCUS and the focus must be on Jesus. I don’t think the millennials have a corner on introverted self worship. Yes, the Jews had a choir but they also had a band and they didn’t sing hymns, they sang Psalms. The hymns came later. The Psalm, the hymn, the praise hymn–it doesn’t matter so long as we are focused on Jesus and are glorifying HIM. I am sure that the flesh can weasel it’s way into any style of worship, including the traditional that MacArthur and some many others prefer. Don’t try to put Jesus in a box: remember the Pharisees were traditionalist and Jesus preferred the worship of a prostitute over theirs. It is not style that counts: it is heart.
- I still on my little lap top and not back on track. Hope to get there soon. I did things backward yesterday: did a ministry project first, then had an emergency of sorts and did not get to do my bible study till last night. It is not the way to go.
- Today is THANKSGIVING EVE and I have a ton of things to be thankful for. Please remember my friend Larry Garner in your prayers. He started the much dreaded stem cell treatment today.
- If Brian Ellis keeps it up, he may be up for coach of the year. His junior boys smoked Priceville last night. Big L got him a three.