Sunday 10th March, 20019
TRUTHFULNESS IN WORSHIP
Hymn of meditation: PH 229
Faithful, loving God, Jehovah,
Now we thank You and adore.
Holy Word, we have from You Lord,
Word You gave to save the world.
Help me worship You and praise You,
Worship You in heart and spirit,
Hide Your Word within my heart,
Grant the Word to dwell in me.
Today marks the first Sunday in Lent, and I am speaking on the theme “Truthfulness in worship”. What does it mean to be truthful?
To be truthful is to be genuine, honest, actual, reliable, and sincere in our actions, character, utterances and confessions. So the theme today is admonishing us to exhibit truthfulness in our worship to the Lord.
In our Bible reading from Deuteronomy 26:1-11, Moses, after 40 years in the wilderness, told the Israelites to worship the Lord with their substance; not just singing and praising. If the Lord blesses you in the land and in the marriage you seek, in the job you have desired, be sure to give the Lord your first fruit. Be sincere to the Lord in your giving. All that the first reading seeks to convey is that, being truthful in worship is to give sincerely to the Lord, to our fellows and unto the church as Christians.
Some may be lying down sick in the hospitals waiting for the opportunity to give their substance but are denied the chance; let us take full advantage of this opportunity to worship the Lord with our substance.
In the second reading, we are asked to confess the Lord Jesus with our mouth.
But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming: That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.” For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile–the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
It should not be mentioned among us that we bless the Lord with our mouths and later, engage the same mouth to curse and insult our fellows. We are being told by the word of God to confess Christ and the salvation He has bestowed on mankind. Confess what is good. The words we speak are powerful, they are spirit. If you call yourself poor, you will be poor.
Being truthful in worship also involves uttering words that will cause you to stand firm in the things of God. Utter what is good at all times, and you shall be blessed.
Thirdly, Luke 4:1-13 is the famous story of Jesus’ temptation by satan in the wilderness after fasting for forty days and nights. The devil used the same words of scripture to tempt but Jesus used the correct interpretation of the word to overcome. The strength that Jesus had which enabled Him to overcome the devil has also been deposited in you. Speak out the word and not your own understanding. If you ever lack any understanding in any part of scripture, simply draw near to your minister, church leader or Bible study leader for proper interpretation.
We are tempted at all times and individually. Each one goes through one kind of temptation or another. Temptation in itself is not a sin but our response to it is what makes the difference. In our daily walk with God, we will face challenges of temptations on all fronts but we have the power to be truthful and faithful to the end. The power to overcome temptation is in you. Depend and focus on the Lord in temptation.
After Jesus temptation, Bible says, the devil left Him for an opportune time. The devil is an opportunist, always waiting for the right time to strike. He hovers around looking for another chance to come in with another temptation. You may have overcome the devil one time but that does not make you an all time winner over the devil for he will come back to test you over and over again.
Be on your guard, the devil is around the corner. Be strong, stand firm and be truthful and the victory shall be yours. Be obedient to the Word, then you can overcome every temptation.
In conclusion, do not just worship with your words and songs, but be truthful also in tithing and offertory. Give to your fellow brethren not for fame and glory but as worship unto the Lord.
Confess with your mouth. Words are life and spirit which cannot be taken back once spoken. Do not curse, insult, do not plan maliciously against your brother. Whatever we confess comes back to haunt us so be careful what you say. May we apply the word and overcome.
Worship the Lord in your giving, in utterances and we shall overcome every temptation.