February 28, 2023
Actively Worshiping With Other Christians
Nehemiah - “All the people assembled with a unified purpose at the square just inside the Water Gate… Then Ezra praised the Lord, the great God, and all the people chanted, ‘Amen! Amen!’ as they lifted their hands. Then they bowed down and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground.” (Nehemiah 8:1, 5-6)
When Nehemiah and the Jews worked on the walls around Jerusalem, it was a corporate effort. When THEY prepared for the possibility of an attack, they ALL worked from a plan of CORPORATE defense. And when they ALL celebrated the completion of the wall, they celebrated TOGETHER in a time of worship. The people listened CORPORATELY as Ezra read from the scriptures. Nehemiah writes that ALL the people chanted “Amen! Amen!” while they ALL lifted their hands to the Lord. As a GROUP, “they bowed down and worshiped the Lord with THEIR faces to the ground.” (Nehemiah 8:5-6) The people of God knew it was important to worship TOGETHER as the people of God.
The inhabitants of Jerusalem knew it was important for them to worship together. Corporate worship was an important part of being the people of God. In a similar way, God’s people (Christians) today should faithfully attend the worship services of their church. The Apostle Paul writes, “Let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage and warn each other, especially not that the day of His coming back again is drawing near.” (Hebrews 10:25).
Corporate worship is vital for followers of Jesus Christ because it identifies us as part of the body of Christ. Henry Blackaby, in Experiencing God, writes that the church “is a living body, created by Christ, and Christ is its Head. Through the church, God intends to extend His kingdom throughout the earth. God’s activity in the church, therefore, is crucial to every believer.” Corporate worship is crucial for believers. The practice draws us closer to the Lord and closer together.
We need to faithfully attend our Church’s worship services so we can better encounter God. King David was a man of worship who crafted many of the Psalms. He writes, “Come, let us tell of the Lord’s greatness; let us exalt His name together.” (Psalm 34:3) He knew there was power in coming together to worship the Lord. Participating in the worship services of our church also helps us be equipped as Christians. The Apostle Paul writes, “Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do His work and build up the church, the body of Christ. (Ephesians 4:11-12) Faithfully attending our church worship services also helps us encourage others. The Apostle Paul also writes that God “makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.” (Ephesians 4:16). The church is a body with various parts that support one another. When we join together in worship, God draws us together in powerful and unique ways.
FOLLOW UP ACTIVITY
In your journal or on a piece of paper, make a list of the ways participating in church worship services helps you to better encounter God, equip yourself for life and ministry, and encourage others. Then write out a prayer to the Lord, asking Him to help you always prioritize worshiping with the people of God. If you’re leading your family through this devotion, dialogue with them about the importance of participating in your church worship services. Then pray together as a family, asking God to help you all prioritize Him in worship.
PRAYER FOR TODAY
Lord, help me to always strive to join together with other Christians to worship You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.