Worship is the cornerstone of the Christian life. The bedrock of the local church is its worship service, and all aspects of the church’s ministry are founded there. It is only as a Christian truly worships that growth begins spiritually. Learning to worship and praise God should be the believer’s lifetime pursuit.

Corporate worship reflects the depth of our relationship with God.  We learn to worship God not only for what He is doing in our personal lives, but most of all for who He is - His being, character and plan for the world.

There are at least three primary aspects that reflect our worship experience.  As we enter into the place of worship, we need to take time for personal preparation.
During the prelude, we prepare our hearts and minds for the worship experience.  We eliminate all outside distractions that would hinder our attention on the One  we have come to worship.    As the Call to Worship is given, we engage in personal and corporate participation with praise, prayers, reading of scripture, singing hymns and spiritual songs. These are means of expressing adoration, and reverence to God’s eternal presence in our lives.  It is also a time of personal confession and commitment to serve the living Lord.

The worship experience leads to the proclamation of God’s Word as we reflect upon what God has to say to us today. His Word applies to our lives as we move out to our homes and society during the coming week. We then dedicate ourselves to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ and His forgiving and healing grace to the hurting and lost humanity in need of a Savior.

In Isaiah 6, the prophet of God, who eventually became a martyr for his faith, describes a powerful worship experience. Included were five important elements:

  • First, Recognition of God ... “I saw the Lord.”

  • Second, Rejoice before God“Holy, Holy, Holy, is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of His glory!”

  • Third, Repentance of Sins ... “Woe is me!”...“I am a man of unclean lips,”

  • Fourth, Restoration ... “He touched my mouth and said, ‘Lo, this has touched your lips, and your iniquity and guilt are taken away and your sin is completely atoned for and forgiven,’”

  • Fifth, Recruitment for Service ...“‘Whom shall I send and who will go for us?’Then said I, ‘Here am I, send me.’And He said, ‘Go and tell this people.’” (Isaiah 6: 1-9, AMP)

Robert Grant, a l9th century member of the Parliament of Scotland, became a missionary and leader of a medical college in Bombay, India. He wrote a powerful hymn, which has become a model for worship,
    O worship the King, all-glorious above,   
    And gratefully sing His power and His love;   
    Our shield and Defender, the Ancient of Days,   
    Pavilioned in splendor and girded with praise.

    O tell of His might, O sing of His grace,   
    Whose robe is the light, whose canopy space;   
    His chariots of wrath the deep thunderclouds form,   
    And dark is His path on the wings of the storm.

    Frail children of dust, and feeble as frail,   
    In Thee do we trust, nor find Thee to fail;  
    Thy mercies how tender, how firm to the end!   
    Our Maker, Defender, Redeemer and Friend.
(Excerpts taken from Amazing Grace, 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions, Kenneth W. Osbeck, Kregel Publications, Grand Rapids, MI, p. 202)
(Excerpts of this original article were published in the “Your Faith” page of the
Newark Advocate, OH)