What is worship? What constitutes worship? What is the difference between true worship and false worship? Why is what we say before God so important? Why is it that a man can’t be saved until he speaks something with His mouth? Why is it that the proof, the evidence that you have been filled with the Holy Spirit, the fact that you speak another language out of your mouth that you have not learned?
What is it about worship that if it is done right, heaven kisses earth? It seems to be a deep mystery, yet it is simple in nature. Throughout history God has dwelt in different places. 1) First, God dwelt in the garden of Eden until the fall of man, 2) God dwelt in the tent of meeting in Exodus 33:7, 3) God dwelt in the tabernacle of Moses in Exodus, 4) God dwelt in the Tabernacle of David in Kings and Chronicles, 5) God dwelt in Solomon’s Temple in Kings and Chronicles, 6) Christ was then placed in Herod’s Temple in the New Testament and now 7) God has now chosen to dwell in the human body, which became and is the Temple of the Holy Spirit for those who are born again by the Spirit of God.
Why are words so important to God that He doesn’t move until He hears them? What is so important about words that make the difference in worship? The fact is; worship is not worship until it is put into words! To those who say I just worship God in my heart, or without making noise, that is not worship. Praise is not praise until it comes out of your mouth. It is out of the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks (Luke 6:45). If you find it difficult to worship and glorify God with your mouth, then it might be that there is nothing in your heart that is of God, there is no life of God, no spirit of God. In Psalm 115:17, God said, “The dead praise not the LORD, neither any that go down into silence.” Neither the physically dead nor the spiritually dead praise God. It is still first the natural, then the spiritual, or as is the natural, so is the spiritual (1 Corinthians 15:46).
Can we find out what is so important about worship and why there is no worship without noise? Why does worship involve our emotions and words? In worship some may cry, some may laugh, some may sing, some will shout and rejoicing, some will just soak it in, some will be moving and some being still, but all being involved and loving God from the heart and emotions, that results in what some would call noise. Why is God so pleased with that? Why is it that shouting, music, clapping, singing, crying out that pleases and touches God that causes Him to come down to inhabit our praises. 1 Peter 2:9 “But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:” Psalm 22:3 “But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel.” Psalm 149:1-6 “Praise ye the LORD. Sing unto the LORD a new song, and his praise in the congregation of saints. Let Israel rejoice in him that made him: let the children of Zion be joyful in their King. Let them praise his name in the dance: let them sing praises unto him with the timbrel and harp. For the LORD taketh pleasure in his people: he will beautify the meek with salvation. Let the saints be joyful in glory: let them sing aloud upon their beds. Let the high praises of God be in their mouth.”
Back in the Garden of Eden, there was the Tree of Life that God said, if they continued to eat of it, they would live eternally in this physically body, even after the fall, in their fallen sinful condition being separated form God, so God removed them from that tree in the Garden so they could not partake of it. Genesis 3:19,22,24 “In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return… Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:… So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep the way of the tree of life.” God did this out of love, because His desire was to restore man to the place of fellowship for which he was created, from which he had fallen. That was why God created man to begin with, for fellowship.
Then there was something about this other tree, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, that when they ate of it, the result was spiritual death and separation of the fellowship they had with God, who daily came down to the Garden in the cool of the day to talk with Adam and show His love. Genesis 2:17 “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” Genesis 3:8a “And they heard the voice of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day:”
He was father to Adam and God called Adam his son according to the Gospel of Luke. Luke 3:38 “…which was the son of Adam, which was the son of God.” In a manner of speaking, because of his sin, God told Adam, okay you have disobeyed me and sinned against me, you have showed me that you would prefer fellowship with Satan here on earth than me, you want to sin and die, so I will go back and remain on my throne in heaven and I won’t visit you in the cool of the day again and I will drive you out of the Garden and neither you nor your children will ever have access to the Tree of Live again. I will stay in heaven and you will stay on earth. But I want you to know that I love you enough to not leave you alone in your sinful condition. According to Jewish tradition and writing, God took two animals, two rams, the offering for the high priest, one for each of them, and killed the rams and took the two warm bloody animal skins and attached them to the bodies of Adam and Eve. Genesis 3:21 “Unto Adam also and to his wife did the LORD God make coats of skins, and clothed them.”
Something happened that Day when the blood of the rams fell upon the ground, for the Word says the life of the flesh is in the blood. Leviticus 17:11 “For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.” The Hebrew word translated life (nephesh, neh'-fesh) in this verse is literally the common English word for soul and is the same Hebrew word that is twice translated soul in the same verse. The life force of the flesh or the soul of the flesh is in the blood. When Cain killed his brother Abel, God said the blood of your brother is crying up to me from the ground. Genesis 4:9-10 “And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper? And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground.”
Blood has more than DNA and chromosomes, blood has a voice and God in heaven looked to the ground and saw and heard the blood that was crying out to him from the ground. Also, the soul of Cain had left his body and gone to the lower parts of the earth, into sheol, so his blood was speaking to God, it was crying out for revenge for his murder. Hebrews 12:24 says; “And to Jesus the mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things than that of Abel.” The blood of Jesus cries for mercy for the one who accepts Jesus blood as the atonement for his sin, to the one covered by that blood, instead of judgment. Cain could not talk for himself, because he was dead, but when the blood flowed from his body it started talking to God. Then something was established. God said take a lamb and offer it and when the blood comes out of its body (the life of the flesh is in the body, the soul of the flesh is in the body, animals have a soul because they have blood, but they have no spirit), but when that blood of the lamb flows to the ground, it talks to God, it speaks to God. He hears its voice and it says; don’t hold this sin against them.
Man had messed up and God had to have a way back into the earth because man had turned it over to Satan because of sin. The flood took most of the world away. Then God took a man named Moses and spoke to him, first in the burning bush, to take him back to Egypt to bring the children of Israel out again and back to the desert from where on Mount Sinai God would speak to Moses twice, face to face for 40 days. Exodus 24:18 “And Moses went into the midst of the cloud, and gat him up into the mount: and Moses was in the mount forty days and forty nights.” Exodus 34:28 “And he was there with the LORD forty days and forty nights; he did neither eat bread, nor drink water. And he wrote upon the tables the words of the covenant, the ten commandments.”
Why? What was God wanting? What was God’s real purpose and intent? What was this meeting on the Mount with God all about? Exodus 19:5-6 “Now therefore, if ye will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then ye shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: And ye shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and an holy nation.” God was telling Moses, I want a kingdom of priests, a group of people who will approach and worship Me. How would they do this? God told Moses to build Him a house on earth. God said if you will do things right, the way I tell you, then I will again come back down to the earth again and I will dwell in your midst in that tabernacle and I will speak to you from between the cherubim above the mercy seat. The heavens were pealed back and Moses saw into the temple in heaven (seen in Rev.1,8) and he saw the candelabra, the golden alter, the table of showbread and he saw a golden box called the Ark of the Covenant. And God told Moses how to build it. He was told to take a particular tree in the desert, the acacia tree (shittim). Exodus 25:10 “And they shall make an ark of shittim wood: two cubits and a half shall be the length thereof, and a cubit and a half the breadth thereof, and a cubit and a half the height thereof.”
It was a tree that the older it got the stronger it got. God told him the dimensions and then told him to overlay the wooden box with gold, inside and outside and make a lid that fits over the top of the box that would be pure gold, they say 700 pounds worth, the mercy seat with two cherubim’s. Exodus 25:11, 17-21 “And thou shalt overlay it with pure gold, within and without shalt thou overlay it, and shalt make upon it a crown of gold round about… And thou shalt make a mercy seat of pure gold: two cubits and a half shall be the length thereof, and a cubit and a half the breadth thereof. And thou shalt make two cherubims of gold, of beaten work shalt thou make them, in the two ends of the mercy seat. And make one cherub on the one end, and the other cherub on the other end: even of the mercy seat shall ye make the cherubims on the two ends thereof. And the cherubims shall stretch forth their wings on high, covering the mercy seat with their wings, and their faces shall look one to another; toward the mercy seat shall the faces of the cherubims be. And thou shalt put the mercy seat above upon the ark; and in the ark thou shalt put the testimony that I shall give thee.”
Build this piece of furniture first before the others. Why first? Because that box represented His throne! Exodus 25:22 “And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubims which are upon the ark of the testimony, of all things which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel.” At times His throne became a chariot that Ezekiel described, seeing 4 cherub carrying it upon their shoulders. Ezekiel 1:24-26 “And when they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of great waters, as the voice of the Almighty, the voice of speech, as the noise of an host: when they stood, they let down their wings. And there was a voice from the firmament that was over their heads, when they stood, and had let down their wings. And above the firmament that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone: and upon the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above upon it.” The cherub have 4 faces. That of a lion, an ox, an eagle and a man. Ezekiel 1:10 “As for the likeness of their faces, they four had the face of a man, and the face of a lion, on the right side: and they four had the face of an ox on the left side; they four also had the face of an eagle.” The ark was to be carried by the priests from the four corners by the staves placed through the rings on the four sides. Exodus 37:5 “And he put the staves into the rings by the sides of the ark, to bear the ark.”
The four faces of the cherubim represent the four gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. The four emblems represent the four main tribes of Israel, – The lion represents the tribe of Judah, the face of man is the tribe of Reuben, the tribe of Manasseh is the Ox, and the tribe of Dan is the eagle. There were four sides of the temple that the people camped around in the wilderness, three tribes on each side. Dan was the main tribe on the north side, Judah was the main tribe in the east side, Reuben was the main tribe on the south side and Manasseh was the main tribe in the west.
God said to pattern it all like that which he saw in heaven. He showed Ezekiel 4 living creatures carrying the throne and their feet moving so fast it looked like a wheel. Ezekiel 1:14, 19-10 “And the living creatures ran and returned as the appearance of a flash of lightning… And when the living creatures went, the wheels went by them: and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up. Whithersoever the spirit was to go, they went, thither was their spirit to go; and the wheels were lifted up over against them: for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels.” The Jews called it his chariot. That when God came down from heaven to earth to fight for his people, the 4 cherubs carried his throne (Ezek.1-2) and God rides on the wings of the cherub.
Why did God want Moses to build all this? One day a year, He said I will come down and sit on the mercy seat between the cherub, not just light or smoke. But there was something that had to be done if he was to come and sit on the mercy seat and show mercy upon the people for the next year. The High Priest had to take the blood of a bull, a ram and a lamb and sprinkle the blood on the east end of the ark 7 times on Yom Kippur. Then, when God saw the blood, it would be accepted as an atonement for their sins. Moses patterned everything in the tabernacle according to what he saw in heaven. The only way for God to come down and for man to go into His presence, was for man to come the way God said to come, His way and no other way. Nothing else was acceptable to God but exact precision in all these things.
1Chron.15:1, 16:1 “And David made him houses in the city of David, and prepared a place for the ark of God, and pitched for it a tent… So they brought the ark of God, and set it in the midst of the tent that David had pitched for it: and they offered burnt sacrifices and peace offerings before God.” David did not take down the tabernacle of Moses that was in Shiloh or Gibea that in times was in Nob and moved it to Jerusalem. He did not tear it down or take the candelabra or menorah, the golden alter or the table of showbread out of the holy place, or the brazen alter from the outer court. The only piece of furniture that David had the priests take out of the tabernacle of Moses and move it from Gibea to Shiloh, some 15-18 miles was the Ark of the covenant, to the tabernacle he built for it on Mount Zion.
There is where we see a picture of renewed worship, as God intended it to be, in the tabernacle of David. True worship begins with the heart that loves God. True worship is from within the spirit of man. God said, “out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.” If what comes out of your mouth is what your heart is full of, then only a heart full of worship and thanksgiving can truly worship God and offer up acceptable worship to God.
Jesus said, “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:23-24). It is impossible to offer true worship without a knowledge of the truth, of who God is and His nature and character, of His love for us and it is impossible to worship God without His Spirit living within us. True worship begins from the Holy Spirit within and flows back to the Father. True worship isn’t just you in your flesh speaking words or singing music. It is where you give thanks and worship flows from your innermost being, your spirit, to the object of your love. That is why the spiritually dead cannot offer true praise and worship to God. They are incapable of it, because they have not the Spirit of God. As God is spirit, worship is spiritual, not something physical we do.
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