Worship Etymology: The word Worship is derived from the Old English ‘weorþscipe’, meaning worship, honour shown to an object, which has been etymologised as "worthiness or worth-ship"—to give, at its simplest, worth to something.
This is all well and good but what does it mean to us on a daily basis? How do we perceive worship and what does it mean to us to live out each day?
In Romans chapter 12 verses 1 - 2 it says:
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
By this stance, worship is so much more than the 20 minutes we sing on a Sunday morning in the songs that are played at the start of the service.
What matters most to me
Worship for me personally, is what is going on inside my heart at all times; whether it be at work, catching up with family or friends, what I spend my personal time on (exercise, cleaning, cooking, reading, shopping or whatever else we do on a daily basis). It is what matters most to me and in turn what I spend my time, energy or even finances on. It is what takes my top priority slot each week and where my devoted allegiance lies.
In Psalm chapter 86 verses 9 - 10 it says;
“All the nations you have made will come and worship before you, Lord; they will bring glory to your name. For you are great and do marvellous deeds; you alone are God.”
Throughout the Bible we see worship outworked in various forms; and we read that our worship has been under-attack for generations. Beginning in the Old Testament we see the worship of Baal, Mammon and Asherah. These three areas can be translated to our lives today—through the worship or the pursuit of Power, Money and Pleasure. Whilst all three areas are not bad in themselves, and aren’t something we should pursue, it is at which priority we are placing it in our lives that matters.
God above all else
In Exodus 20 verse 3 it says;
“You shall have no other gods before me.”
This verse highlights the importance of placing God before all else, as it is part of the ten commandments and listed as number #1.
Throughout the Bible we read that we are made to worship our creator through everything we do, and if we are not worshipping our creator then we are putting something or someone else into his rightful place.
For me personally, I was reminded of the power of worship when reading a book recently that talked about how even the Archangel of worship, Lucifer, fell from grace when he wanted to be worshipped himself. This is the enemy in our lives each day as he too understands the power of worship and attempts to get us to worship anything else, good or bad, but God himself.
Worship is our response to what we value the most. Everyone has an altar; our time, attention, energy, finances and loyalty. It may not be a natural altar but definitely a spiritual one.