The Fear of the Lord and our Worship

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Jesus Heals with shadow-site

Wednesday 10/23/13

Topic: The Fear of the Lord & Healing

 

Series – And He Healed them all:

The Fear of the Lord and our Worship.mp3

 

[powerpress url=”https://www.grace-life.org/Audio/2013/Wednesday/Wed_10-23-13.mp3″]

Key Text:

2 Peter 1:1-14

Heb. 6:1-7

John 15:1-11

The Fear of the Lord and our Worship…

Tonight we deviated off of our normal course and we may not return. We may be done for now with our series on healing. But tonight we took a look at our lives of worship. Worship is a form of the Fear of the Lord in that it means to hold in reverence.

Beginning in 2 Peter chapter one we began to read what it was that Peter saw as necessary for the early church to keep them on course even though they were currently established in the truth. As we read we saw that stirring them up by causing them them remember their spiritual roots was his spirit-led way.

Peter spoke of fruit and his concern over the lack of it in a believers life.

  • Heb. 6:6,7
  • John 15:4-6

Fruit is the unavoidable result of living in joyful union with our Lord. It cannot be “produced” by self-effort or personal diligence. In fact, the harder a Christian works at fruit-bearing the less joy they will experience int heir lives. Fruit is a produce of union!

As Christians, we NEED joy to live out our union life with Him. Without it, we will become short-sighted and forget the very things Peter was stirring up the early church to not forget.

This message took a very personal turn in that as an elder I found it necessary to turn a objective bright light on ourselves as a church to examine our hearts of worship as an assembly.

Where are our hearts?

Do we long to time together as a church?

What does it take to keep us away?

What led us to the place we are now?

This led us to looking at our worship and our fruit.

Worship is a life-style, not a thing we do to “gospel music”. It is the reverence we have for and express in our lives towards Christ in our intimacy with Him.

Union, we learned, was a product of relational trust in Who He is revealing Himself to be in our lives. We all know Him as Savior, but there are times when in order to grow us in grace God needs to reveal Himself more to us in other areas. For those whose default “idol” is insecurity over money, Christ is revealed to us as our all-sufficiency. For those who struggle with covetousness or lust, He is revealed to us as our great desire.

As we receive the image of Himself that He reveals to us, we find ourselves talking with Him, sometimes wrestling with Him over these Self-revelations and if we will persevere we will arrive at a state of resting in Who we’ve learned Him to be – we are finally in a state of genuine faith. As we rest in Him – meaning Who He has revealed Himself to be, we allow His word to abide (take up residence) within us – resulting in bearing fruit consistent with His image in us…our glory.

We covered this MUCH more clearly and thoroughly in the audio. To learn more about the Fear of the Lord and our Worship, please listen to the above recording.

Hi I am Pastor Mark...

I have been a pastor for nearly 30 years now (2018), though never quite like I am today. (more on that in a moment)

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As to my home, I have been married since 1995 to my wonderful wife Terissa Woodson who is my best friend, greatest personal support and most valued aid.
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As far as my education goes, I grew up in a Christian home, but questioned everything I was ever taught. I graduated from Bible college in 1990 and continued to question everything I was ever taught (I do not mention my college in order to avoid being labeled). Perhaps my greatest preparation for ministry has been life and ministry itself. To quote an author I have come to enjoy namely Fredrick Buechner in his writing entitled, Now and Then,

"If God speaks to us at all other than through such official channels as the Bible and the church, then I think that He speaks to us largely through what happens to us...if we keep our hearts open as well as our ears, if we listen with patience and hope, if we remember at all deeply and honestly, then I think we come to recognize beyond all doubt, that, however faintly we may hear Him, He is indeed speaking to us, and that, however little we may understand of it, His word to each of us is both recoverable and precious beyond telling."

~ Fredrick Buechner

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By 2009 I’d been Pastoring for nearly 20 years. Earlier in 2009 the Lord revealed to me that the way we had structured our church was not in keeping with the New Testament. This was a shock to me and it is was a revelation that did not come all at once but over the course of a few weeks.

We were a traditional single pastor led congregation. It was a top-bottom model of ministry which is in part biblical, but not in the form of a monarchy.

The needed change did not come into focus until about 9 very intense months of study and discussions with those who were leaders in our church at the time.

We believe the Bible teaches co-leadership with equal authority in each local assembly and though we currently only have one Pastor/Elder, it is our desire that God, in His faithfulness and timing, may bring us more as we grow in maturity and even in numbers. Having multiple shepherds with God's heart and equal authority protects both Shepherds and sheep. Equal accountability keep authority and doctrine in check. Multiple shepherds also provides teaching with various styles and giftings with leadership skills which are both different and complementary.

Well that is about all there is of interest to tell you about me. I hope our ministry here is a blessing to you and your family. I also hope that it is only a supplement to a local church where you are committed to other believers in a community of grace.

~God Bless!