Respond: A Call to Authentic Worship (Part 11)
How do we worship? What are we “allowed” to do while still being reverent before the Lord, worshiping in spirit and truth? What is God's desire for our worship? Does He give us the right to pick and choose how we worship?
Over the course of this multi-part devotional, we will discover and learn the ways that we can actively worship God when we come together as the gathered Church. We are told in Paul’s letter to the church in Corinth that our mere existence, even eating or drinking, can be worship to God; so we understand that our worship is not confined to a time or a place—it is a lifestyle. This mini-series is intended to develop our worship as it pertains to the intentional physical and spiritual acts that we do during our worship. Granted, these things can (and should) be done whether we are at church or not. My hope is that churches and believers everywhere, will experience true freedom in worship together—a glimpse into what heaven may be like one day. God desires us to worship in this way. Let’s learn together.
“So whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” 1 Corinthians 10:31 (NLT)
Part 11: Our Physical Posture - Dancing
“So let the music begin; praise His name—dance and sing to the rhythm of the tambourine, and to the tune of the harp. For the Eternal is listening, and nothing pleases Him more than His people; He raises up the poor and endows them with His salvation.” Psalm 149:3-4 (VOICE)
“You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing. You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy, that I might sing praises to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever!” Psalm 30:11-12 (NLT)
“And David danced before the Lord with all his might. And David was wearing a linen ephod. So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the Lord with shouting and with the sound of the horn.” 2 Samuel 6:14-15 (ESV)
“Praise him with tambourine and dance; praise him with strings and pipe!” Psalm 150:4 (ESV)
“Then Jesus called for the children and said to the disciples, ‘Let the children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of God belongs to those who are like these children. I tell you the truth, anyone who doesn’t receive the Kingdom of God like a child will never enter it.’” Luke 18:16-17 (NLT)
We can dance before the Lord. Really, all of the actions regarding our physical posture could be denied their value on the sole belief that God is a God of order, but dancing seems to get the most attention. (“For God is not a God of confusion but of peace.” 1 Corinthians 14:33 (ESV)) This passage is talking about the proper use of spiritual gifts in worship—more specifically, about prophecy and tongues. In certain church cultures, dancing is prohibited on the sole belief that God is a God of order, regardless of what other scriptures say. We are given multiple accounts in scripture that promote dancing before the Lord. Furthermore, Jesus tells us to receive His kingdom like a child; when we see children participating in worship, they are free, unhindered by their own opinions, fears, or circumstances. We tend to restrict ourselves so often because we do not want to be seen as a distraction or embarrassment; meanwhile, David, a prominent and powerful king, made a fool of himself (in man’s eyes) as worship before the Lord, and God honored him.
The way we present our bodies physically in worship reveals so much about what is going on inside of us. Whether we are bowing or kneeling, standing or dancing, it should reflect the worship that is taking place internally. In moments specifically created and set aside for worship, we should be intentional in connecting our internal emotions and understanding with our external expressions. God desires for us to love Him with all of our strength—what would that look like for you?