Does It Matter?
Ten Amazing Things that Happen When the Church Gathers to Worship
Dealing with Troubled Times
Fueled by the evil, unreasoning hate for Israel and Jews everywhere, and for the Church of Jesus Christ, every suicidal terrorist continues his/her senseless onslaught.
- The ancient deserts of the hate inch ever closer to the green, tranquil meadows of America.
- This divided nation seems ready to pull apart at the well-worn seams when colors mix violently in the streets.
- The lives of so many people in so many places are desperate to the point of collapse.
It doesn’t matter if the fall happens in a mansion or a hovel, the house without Christ will surely fall in today’s storms and “great will be the fall of it.” (Mat 7:27)
And what do we do?
We sing and lead others in singing.
Does it matter?
Is our ministry just a pitiful noise lost in the clamor of civilizations in deadly conflict, families in ruin and lives squandered in iniquity? Surely there is something we can do that is more substantial, more meaningful, and more impactful than to simply gather together in our houses of worship to play our tunes and sing our little songs and make our little speeches as we perform our little ceremonies of slim and fragile hope.
On the contrary, I believe worship is one of the most important things people can do. It may seem irrelevant or even useless, but this is not the case.
Who Is Marching and Where Are They Going?
This troubled world is in constant motion;
- gigantic forces clash,
- evil vs. good,
- darkness vs. light,
- wholesale apostasy vs. the Last Day’s Outpouring of the Holy Spirit. (Acts 2)
Evil is marching through the geopolitical strife of nation warring with nation.
- Wickedness strides through our city streets,small town neighborhoods and rural lanes with heavy steps of lust and hate.
- Tragedy stalks our homes and schools and even our churches with guns blazing and no one feels safe.
- Profanity falls as a nuclear sickness from every satellite and cell phone tower and truth has surely “fallen in the streets.” (Is 59:14)
In the Midst of the Noise, A Song Can Be Heard.
The drumbeat of evil is not the only sound in the world. There are those who march to a different drummer indeed. As the old American song states again and again, “His truth is marching on!” Amid the sounds of a fallen humanity there can be heart the song of a redeemed humanity.
- There is a song of joy in the face of sorrow,
- a melody of peace that opposes violence, and a
- hopeful chant that dispels despair.
- There is a symphony orchestra complete with a chorus that plays every week, every Lord’s Day—the Church gathered in worship!
What we do matters; it matters a great deal. How? Ten amazing things happen and they happen nowherelse.
- The Kingdom of God is established in our midst when we praise the Lord. (Ps 22:3)
- We enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise (Ps 100)
- When we worship Him the Lord is with us, walking among us “with healing in his wings” to touch us, deliver us, open our blinded eyes and bind up our broken hearts. (Mal. 4, Is 61, Lk 4)
- When we tell His story lives are changed forever when they simply believe. (Ro 1:16)
- In worship we resist the devil so that he must flee! (James 4:7)
- At the Table of the Lord the New Covenant is renewed. (1 Cor 11:25)
- When we worship God, His light shines on us, in us, and through us, beating back the encroaching darkness. (Is 60, 1 John 1)
- True Worship brings people together despite the dividing forces at play in the world and in the church. (Ps 145, 102:22, Mal 4:5)
- The church at worship journeys to Mt. Zion, to the place where God dwells in power and rules in peace. (Heb. 12:22)
- As worshipers contemplate the Glory of the Lord in worship, we are changed from the inside out. (2 Cor. 3:18)
So, what shall we do this Sunday? Let’s sing the truth and march forth as an army of light and truth. There is so much at stake.
- There will be hurting people who will need the healing touch found in the song of Jesus.
- There will be families out there in the pews who are on the verge of flying apart who need the peace of Christ.
- There is a nation under assault that needs a marching song to sing that will dispel the darkness and bring them to the light.
- There are evil armies at work in the atmosphere who need to be reminded that Jesus, alone, is Lord.
We had better sing—it really does matter!
© 2016 Stephen R. Phifer All Rights Reserved
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