Monday, June 23, 2008

Royal Prerogative

"Glorifying God consists in adoration, or worship. Psa. xxix 2. "Give unto the Lord the glory due unto His name; worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness." There is a twofold worship: (1.) A civil reverence which we give to persons of honour. Gen.xxiii 7. "Abraham stood up and bowed himself to the children of Heth." :iety is no enemy of courtesy. (2.) A divine worship which we give to God as His royal prerogative. Neh. viii 6. "They bowed their heads, and worshipped the Lord with their faces toward the ground." This divine worship God is very jealous of; it is the apple of His eye, the pearl of His crown; which He guards, as He did the tree of life, with cherubims and a flaming sword, that no man may come near it to violate it. Divine worship must be such as God Himself has appointed, else it is offering strange fire. Lev. x 1. The Lord would have Moses make the tabernacle, "according to the pattern in the mount." Exod. xxv 40. He must not leave out anything in the pattern, nor add to it. If God was so exact and curious about the place of worship, how exact will He be about the matter of His worship! Surely here everything must be according to the pattern prescribed in His word."

-Thomas Watson, A Body of Divinity, pgs. 7-8.

In my previous post, I spent some time looking into what it means to glorify God, in terms of Him having the supremacy in our thoughts. Now, out of that admiration (setting Him highest in our thoughts) for God flows the stream of worship, or adoration. With glipse of His stunning glory are we able to grasp worship as His royal prerogative. It is only when we rightly see and comprehend His holiness and beauty can we truly worship Him.

Many, I suppose, think the idea of confining our worship as prescribe by the Scriptures puts God in a box, but it is God who designates such patterns for worship. Therefore, to worship God in any other manner is to offer "strange fire," and do so in disobedience. Therefore, let us never succumb to the grievous error of worshiping God without the knowledge of who He is. An error which I am convinced has plagued the modern church. Thoughtless-worship seeks to center in on feelings and detach believers from doctrines and confessions. This is not worship, but idolatry. Worship stems from Biblical orthodoxy. The Scriptures prescribe us how we must worship, as Thomas Watson accurately points out.

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