If you’re like me, Sundays are my favorite day of the week. Sundays are a time that our church comes together for corporate worship, that is, as a body of believers, we unite to worship our creator God together. I must make a quick distinction about corporate worship. Corporate worship does not simply mean singing, but rather refers to every element within a service because they all serve a purpose to glorify God.
Harold Best describes worship as a “continual outpouring,” which would include everything we do. In other words, we were created to continually outpour everything we have and do, to God, to give the honor and praise the holiest and perfect creator God who gave us breath, redemption, and boundless grace. When we gather on Sundays, we come together, united as a body in order to bring God honor and worship him. By doing this, we proclaim the gospel together.
The idea of proclaiming together is extremely important for the body. When we proclaim truth together it helps to unify us and encourage us in our walk with Christ. It is easy to forget what God has done for us when the troubles of the world come in the way. When we come together to proclaim truth about God, we remind ourselves of what He has done, what His word says, and how He wants us to live out these truths. When we proclaim publicly, we do so so that others can hear, thus we advance the gospel in our gatherings. One of the main ways we proclaim truth is by singing as we speak truths about God to others and to God himself.
We also cherish being in the presence of God, and doing so brings encouragement to the body. The Spirit of God dwells in each believer, and as they gather for corporate worship, God’s presence fills the entire space through His people. This is a way for people who do not know Christ to have an amazing encounter with the Spirit of God. When we encounter God during corporate gatherings, we are more likely to encounter Him in our everyday lives as well. It is also the anticipation of the future unveiled presence of God that believers will experience in heaven. By gathering on Sundays, we get a snapshot picture of what this might be like, and build the anticipation of this time.
The church gathers for worship to be changed by the power of the Spirit. Christians are disciples of Christ, that is they follow Him wholeheartedly. Part of that includes wanting to become more like Christ. Paul talks of how the Christian life is a life of training and great effort. It takes work to become more like Christ. When believers gather, the Spirit works in their lives to make them more like Christ. This is transformational change which not only takes place on Sundays, but every day of the week. Here are a few ways worshipping God on Sundays transforms us: it humbles us, makes us grateful, gives us hope, makes us holy, makes us loving, makes us mission-minded, and changes lives.
When you go to church on Sunday, think about these things as you enter the corporate worship gathering. Know that God’s transformational work is taking place in your heart. Know that your presence is encouraging to other believers. Look for ways God is doing transformational work in the worshippers around you, and encourage them in that. Pray for God to move right in front of you, beside you, and behind you before you even enter a building. Pray through the Scripture text before you come in and take a moment to prepare for this transformational work, prepare to be in God’s presence, and be ready to proclaim truths about Him. These three things are found in this Scripture passage which I will close out with:
23 Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful; 24 and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, 25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near. - Hebrews 10:23-25
Our Pastor writes most of the blog posts we publish, however, occasionally some of our other church leadership (some staff, some volunteer) who also contribute to the New Life blog.