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Introduction to the series: important questions

  • Worshippers enjoy healthier, more dynamic lives than non-worshippers. Why is that?
  • What (if anything) does the Old Testament have to offer Christians?
  • What disqualifies worship?
  • How does true worship fortify lame spiritual lives?
  • How does New Testament worship differ from the Old Testament variety?
  • How has the church approached worship through the ages (and will it every learn from its own history)?
  • Have our (mis)conceptions about heavenly worship demotivated us?

The essence of worship

  • Reverence offered a divine being or supernatural power; an act of expressing such reverence
  • A form of religious practice with its creed and ritual
  • Extravagant respect or admiration for or devotion to an object of esteem
  • “It is a delusion to think that because we suddenly feel expansive and poetic in the presence of the storm or stars or space that we are spiritual. I need only remind you that drunkards or tyrants or criminals can have those ‘sublime’ feelings, too. Let’s not image that they constitute worship.” – A. W. Tozer, Whatever Happened to Worship? 124

Worship in ancient (pagan) world

  • Energetic
  • Weather deities
  • Noise, instruments
  • Immoral: ritual prostitution
  • Sacrifice: infants
  • Mutual manipulation
  • Stark contrast to ethical monotheism (readings from Isaiah 1)

7 Sanctuaries

  • Eden as primal Temple (Genesis)
  • Tabernacle (Exodus)
  • Temple (1 Kings)
  • [In exile: Babylon / Egypt / Samaria]
  • 2nd Temple / Herod's Temple
  • Christ’s body (John 2, 1)
  • The Church (1 Cor 3)
  • New Jerusalem (Rev 21)

Next podcast in this series: Seven grand passages on worship