Worshiping With God’s People

February 27, 2023
 Worshiping With God’s People

Nehemiah - “All the people assembled with a unified purpose at the square just inside the Water Gate. They asked Ezra the scribe to bring out the Book of the Law of Moses, which the Lord had given for Israel to obey. . . .He faced the square just inside the Water Gate from early morning until noon and read aloud to everyone who could understand. All the people listened closely to the Book of the Law. . . .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 8:1-6)


After completing the walls and gates of Jerusalem, Nehemiah and God’s people spent time worshiping the Lord. Corporate worship is something that was common to the Israelite people when God had worked in mighty ways in their favor. In Exodus, the Lord parted the waters of the Red Sea so Moses and the Israelites walked across on dry ground. Then, the waters came back together drowning the Egyptian forces. At that time, the Israelites worshiped together and sang, “I will sing to the Lord, for He has triumphed gloriously; He has hurled both horse and rider into the sea…” (Exodus 15:1) At the dedication of Solomon’s temple, “the king and all Israel with him offered sacrifices to the Lord.” (1 Kings 8:62). It was not a surprise that a celebration accompanied the dedication of the temple. Therefore, it was not only a party of celebration but a godly time of worship when Nehemiah gathered the people upon the completion of the walls around Jerusalem.

When Nehemiah and the Israelites worshiped the Lord, it brought Him pleasure. In the Psalms, we learn that “The Lord is pleased only with those who worship Him and trust His love.” (Psalm 147:11, CEV). In The Purpose Driven Life, Rick Warren writes that “Anything you do that brings pleasure to God is an act of worship. Like a diamond, worship is multifaceted… Anthropologists have noted that worship is a universal urge, hard-wired by God into the very fiber of our being - an inbuilt need to connect with God. Worship is as natural as eating or breathing. If we fail to worship God, we always find a substitute, even if it ends up being ourselves. The reason God made us with this desire is that He desires worshipers.”

Jesus once said, “The time is coming… when true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. The Father is looking for those who will worship Him that way.” (John 4:23) Just as the Lord was pleased with the worship of Nehemiah and the Jewish people, He is pleased with our worship. He desires for us to worship Him continually. King David said, “I will thank the Lord at all times. My mouth will always praise Him.” (Psalm 34:1) May that always be the desire of our hearts as well.


Today, write out a prayer of worship and thanksgiving to the Lord. Then, read it aloud as a part of your prayer time. If you’re leading your family through this devotion, lead each of them to write out their own prayer of worship and thanksgiving to the Lord, then have each member read their prayer out loud in your own family worship time.


Lord, may my prayer to You always echo the words of David: “I will thank You, Lord, at all times. My mouth will always praise You.” In Jesus’ name, Amen. 

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