1999 James A. Fowler
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I. Biblical words for "worship"
A. Hebrew word shachah - "bowing
down before an object of honor"
- Israelites "bowed low and worshipped the Lord"
- "let us worship and bow down"
B. Hebrew word abad - "service
or work for God"
- "fear the Lord your God and worship Him"
- "Worship the Lord with reverence"
C. Hebrew word segid - "showing
respect" or "doing homage"
- "worship the golden image"
D. Greek words gonu and gonupeteo
- "bending the knee"
- "bow my knees before the Father"
- "every knee should bow at the name of Jesus"
E. Greek words sebo and eusebeo
derived from sebas - "fear or reverence"
- "worship God contrary to the law"
- "worshipped in ignorance"
F. Greek word proskuneo, derived
from pros, "toward" and kuneo, "to
- "You shall worship the Lord your God"
- "worship Him in spirit and truth"
G. Greek word latreuo, derived
from latris - "servant"
- "spiritual service or worship"
- "worship in the Spirit of God"
H. Greek word leitourgeo, derived
from laos, "people", and ergeo, "to
- "ministering to the Lord"
9:12 - "ministry of service"
I. Greek word therapeuo - "to
- "God not worshipped by human hands" (KJV)
J. English word "worship" derived
from old Anglo-Saxon weorthscipe, meaning "worth-ship"
II. General concept of worship
A. Honor, respect, devotion, reverence,
veneration, adoration or admiration toward an object of
worth or esteem
B. Man seems to have an innate God-given
need, drive or desire to thus recognize something or someone
C. The objects of value, worth or esteem
which have been accorded worship
objects - sun, moon, stars, mountains, waters, etc.
images - idols, icons. cf. Acts 17:22; I Cor. 10:20
intelligence, creativity, productivity - Rom. 1:25
objects - real estate, automobiles, stocks, bonds, etc.
- hero worship, athletes, musicians, politicians
- fraternities, sororities, societies, churches
III. Religious concepts of worship
A. Religion is etymologically based
on being "bound" or "tied" in devotion to
a particular object.
B. Anthropocentric objects of man's personal
oriented worship - we come, we sing, we pray, we listen, we give,
worship - makes us feel good. Mood-altering
worship - how we think. Belief-system, ideology
worship - do we get strength, patience, energy or blessings?
C. Event centered worship
of worship -
Jewish Sabbath - Day of rest
Jewish tabernacle and temple
Christian church buildings
Rituals, liturgy, programs, art forms, productions
IV. Christian concept of worship
A. Christ-centered worship. Christianity
is Christ, so Christian worship must be Christ in action.
B. Jesus Christ is our High Priest and
worship leader - Heb. 2:17; 8:1,2;9:11- 14
C. Jesus Christ is the subject and object
of Christian worship
D. Jesus Christ expresses "worth-ship"
of God's character in our behavior
worship is a total life reality
Not limited by specified times
Not limited by procedures and form and patterns
Not limited by geographical location and buildings
worship is activated by God's grace
Unique expression in each individual
Spontaneous expression of God's character
E. Christian's responsibility for worship
man's effort - Acts 17:25
- our receptivity of God's activity of expressing His all- glorious