Create a 10 pages page paper that discusses biblcal concepts of worship. Martin’s definition of worship as a dramatic celebration of God must have kindled this quest for finding ways on how one should worship. A look at the Scriptures about the doctrine of worship will help make this new trend be subject to the evaluation of the churches in general, in this modern age.
In the Old Testament there is one main word which is identified which is rendered “worship.” It occurs a total of 172 times in the Authorized Version and being rendered 99 times by “worship” and 68 times as a verb or as an action which denotes the bending over or making oneself appear to be smaller than one really is. The word worship means bow, bow down, obeisance, reverence, fall down, stoop, or crouch. Worship is a technical term for an action where a man’s attitude before God is concerned.
Worship is our reaction based on our knowledge of who God is or of what He has done for us. The Hebrew word “worship” carries with it the action of bowing down. The emphasis on the action illustrates the relationship of the creature, man, towards the Creator, God. Worship, therefore, in this case is acknowledging God’s sovereignty.
In several Scripture passages, the word translated “worship” means to do obeisance. It is to show respect and reverence to a superior. When the authority of the superior is recognized, the inferior “bowed down” or “prostrated themselves” at the other’s feet as a recognition of their being superior. More often, worship is tied up with the revelation of who God is. When a person “worshipped” God or fell down before God in the Old Testament, they were doing so because they knew who God is in their lives.
How a man will worship God will be based on how he knows God. If he doesn’t know God, he cannot react in worship. If his knowledge of God is limited, so will his worship be also.
Bowing down or falling down is an acknowledgment of God’s supremacy, His sovereignty, and His authority. From this confession that God is superior arises an action of obedience in the life of the one who worships. When God said, “Why do you call Me Lord, Lord and not do what I tell you” He was expressing the idea that if one acknowledges God as sovereign it must result to his obedience to the commands that are received from Him.
The New Testament Worship
There are many words in the New Testament which are translated as “worship”. There is one which occurs in 60 occasions and is always rendered “worship” in the Authorized Version. The word connotes that the worshipper had to be involved in some form of bending, kneeling or prostration. This was parallel to obeisance in the Old Testament.
There are two other words which mean “to revere” or “to adore” and this emphasizes the feeling of awe or devotion in the act of worship.
The Contemporary or Modern Worship
As mentioned earlier, many of the churches today of the Protestants and the Catholics have ventured into the realm of findings new ways of expressing their worship, more specifically, public worship. This venture results from the desire to have a kind of worship that will work and continue to be practiced in the church. “A worship that will have staying power is a worship that is firmly grounded in the old, yet aware of and concerned for new ways to respond to the old, old story.” (Webber)
Everyday, many churches coming from different lights of traditions are making a new touch with their worship.