Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be always acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. – Psalm 19:14
In my last blog, I discussed how these troubling times have caused all of us to stop and question many aspects of life and faith. I proposed an idea that in our Christian faith and our Christian communities, we have always been a church that gives God our worship no matter what circumstance we find ourselves in.
I also proposed an acrostic word: W.O.R.S.H.I.P. Each week, I will discuss a letter from the acrostic to discover how we can still worship God during COVID-19. This week’s blog will be about our first letter, W.
Our first letter stands for WITNESS. I believe that this topic is twofold, but more on that later! Witnessing is an essential calling for Christians. Repeatedly, we read God’s command to spread the Good News of Jesus Christ. This should be our motivation, not just during COVID-19, but for the rest of our lives. As we have just celebrated the resurrection of Jesus through the Easter season, it is a great reminder to us all that quickly after His resurrection, Jesus unfolds the Great Commission in Matthew 28:19-20,
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” – ESV
We also see the scriptures discuss proclaiming the Gospel in many other verses: Mark 16:15, 2 Timothy 2:24-26, Romans 1:16, Acts 10:42, Matthew 10:7, John 3:16, 1 Corinthians 15:1-58, Daniel 12:3, John 21:15-17, 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, Matthew 10:27, Matthew 10:27, Matthew 10:8, Mark 1:15, John 3:1-36, Romans 10:13, Galatians 3:26, Matthew 24:24, Matthew 4:17, 2 Timothy 4:2, Matthew 28:19, 1 Corinthians 15:1, Luke 24:46-47
This list goes on and on…
God calls us to proclaim the Gospel. Jesus Himself says, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6.
Therefore, if no one shares this good news, we will ask the same question Paul asked in Romans 10:14, “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?”
Truly, witnessing is worship.
Witnessing is worship because it is following the calling God has given to us. Genuine faith in Christ produces faithful actions. As we trust and obey His word and commandments by spreading the Gospel, we are worshipping God by sharing Him with others. Witnessing is praising God, proclaiming the good news, and pleasing to Him. Therefore, witnessing is worship.
During this epidemic, sharing the gospel can be hard but it is possible. I encourage you to call, Facetime, ZOOM, text, or write a letter to a friend, family member, colleague or co-worker, and tell them the good news that YOU have found in Christ. Someone shared it with you, so it is now your turn no matter your age, experience, background, qualifications, culture etc…we are ALL called to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. As fast as this virus is spreading, I challenge you all to spread the good news even faster.
However, remember I said this word is two-fold?
Indeed, witnessing is worship but also, our worship is also witnessing.
Think about this scripture,
“They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity— all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved. – Acts 2:46-47
I believe that this scripture is suggesting that our worship is a witness to Christ. It is an extremely powerful testimony when the church worships God through a worldwide epidemic. No doubt, all of the world is suffering right now including Christians. Remember, we are not immune to suffering (Hebrews 11) In fact suffering is a normal part of all human life. The difference for believers is we have a solid foundation in Jesus Christ. This foundation supplies hope and that is good news! Because everyone these days is looking for hope, it is of the utmost importance to share the hope we have in Christ.
The Holy Spirit changes hearts when people witness genuine worship. Whether it be a worship song, a sermon, a prayer, a scripture, a mission’s trip, worship during an extremely difficult time, breaks barriers and softens hearts because it invites all to participate in God changing hearts. I’ll be the first to admit I do not fully understand this, but I have witnessed this many times. Simply put, worship serves as a witness and invitation to the nations.
Let me leave you with this prayer as I encourage you to pray this with me this week…
Jesus, you have stretched out your arms of love on the cross so that everyone may come within your reach of saving grace. Clothe us in your spirit that we also may reach out our hands in love. May you bring those who do not know you to the knowledge and love you give so freely. Ignite us the with your love so that others may witness it and be drawn to it. In Jesus name, Amen.
Nicolas Greenfield – Associate Worship Pastor