Worship, however, is not just something to be done simply because it is commanded. The scriptures reveal that heart must also be employed in Christian worship. We must desire to worship. God only wants worship that is done "in spirit and truth" (John 4:24). Christians should always view worship as a privilege. It is an opportunity to offer praise to God on the first day of the week because of His care EVERY day of the week.
The Bible teaches that Christians need one another and that worship plays a vital role in this dynamic. Before the stern words of Hebrews 10:25, the writer speaks of the result of true worship. He urges all Christians, "let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching" (10:24-25). There are many positive byproducts that come as a result of participation in congregational worship:
- Godly worship stirs up the attitudes of love and service (Heb 10:24). The KJV uses the word "Provoke" in Hebrews 10:24. The idea of being provoked by another is usually viewed in a negative sense, but here it is showing how others can have a positive impact on others simply by worshipping God as He has commanded.
- Exhortation occurs (Heb 10:25). The word "exhort" means "to encourage, to embolden, to cheer, to advise, to excite, or to give strength, spirit, or courage" (KJV Bible Dictionary). Through worship Christians find strength to face the week ahead (c.f. Col. 3:16).
As one considers the benefits of worship, the list could go on and on, yet one struggles to find even one satisfactory reason to skip out on worship. The fact is: You need worship, so make it an aim to not forsake the assembly. Praise God, provoke others, and be provoked "unto love and good works".
- Josh Allen (Pikeville, KY)