Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Leading vs Performance Whorship

The "contemporary" trappings of worship do not guarantee leadership

What is good worship leading? Lately, I've found myself ruminating about this subject in the least likely places: time-out during one of my son's basketball games, standing in front of the frozen food section, waiting for the little cylinder to pop back into place at the drive-up teller.
It's only worship leading, for heaven's sakes! You'd think I was obsessed. It all started at a worship conference. Wisely, the organizers of the event had made sure we weren't just analyzing worship ad infinitum. We were actually scheduled to worship! I was looking forward to our corporate fellowship and intimacy with God more than to the classes themselves.
Half-way through the first worship service, I wondered if I'd registered at the wrong conference. Here I was in an ostensibly interactive, God-focused environment, but I had no sense whatsoever of being authentically engaged. It was as if someone had plugged in a pre-fab worship video, the kind that seems permanently stuck in cultural reverse. Picture it - hundreds of sincere worship devotees, dutifully clapping double-time for five songs straight, mimicking the worship leader in multi-minute, shoulder-abusing arm-lifts, spitting out worship-correct statements on cue.
It was less than awesome.
Admittedly, several of the trappings of interactive contemporary worship were present: extended corporate singing, mini-prayers interwoven within medleys, expertly segued moments designed for brief (very brief!) personal reflection. Still, there was something hauntingly synthetic about it. Was it just me? Two conference attendees talked with me afterward. Their experiences had been similar to my own.
Since then, I've concluded that the overriding problem was the worship leading, or, more accurately, the worship performance. What's the difference between the two? Here's an in-process list refined from months of frozen-food section/basketball game musings. No doubt you could come up with a few entries of your own.

Worship Performer
·         feigns a private worship life with God
·         lifts up self
·         manipulates people through "virtual worship"
·         consumed with presenting a "glittering image" (I Samuel 16:7) recommended reading: Glittering Images by Susan Howatch (Ballentine, 1995)
·         fails to give spiritual "big picture"
·         personal goal: maximum visibility
·         draws attention to self by: dressing in revealing, loud, or ultra trendy styles; contrived, too big or too many gestures; talking too much; focusing on own experience; singing and/or playing too loudly; exaggerating movements when playing instrument; displaying vocal or instrumental "virtuosity" for show; monopolizing front and center stage.
·         clones his/her "worship leading" style from the Christian subculture
·         strings together a series of pre-fabricated gestures and jargon
·         tries to "work the crowd," to manipulate an experience
·         tells how/pressures people to respond
·         inflexible with the worship order; does everything according to plan
·         searches crowd for signs of approval
·         disallows or interrupts silence
·         dislikes giving up the microphone to others visibly depressed by smaller crowds; goes through the motions

Worship Leader
·         takes "worship as a life" seriously
·         lifts up God
·         leads people to worship by worshiping
·         consumed with a passion for God and an integrity of heart (Psalm 27:4; Ephesians 4:22-24) recommended reading: The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer (Christian, 1992)
·         keeps Christ's redemption at the forefront; relates God's story to people's own stories
·         personal goal: invisibility
·         deflects attention from self by: dressing in style but modestly; using gestures as natural expressions of personal worship; talking only to provide context or reveal more about God; focusing most on the character and works of God; heard but not distracting; playing to express, not for an "effect"; offering skill to God as a sacrifice of praise; occasionally moving to the side to become less visible.
·         allows God to fashion his/her own style out of unique personality, gifts and experiences
·         worships spontaneously, heartfelt
·         fosters an atmosphere of worship then steps back and lets God meet people where they are
·         gives people options and lets them find their own way
·         prepared, but sensitive to what God is doing
·         stays in touch with the people in order to sense their needs
·         lets go of control, allows God to speak in the quiet, to deal with people's brokenness
·         mentors others in worship leading, gives them opportunities to serve celebrates God authentically, no matter how many are in the pews

It's a given that nobody will ever "arrive" as a worship leader. But if you or someone under you is responsible for weekly worship and is displaying several "worship performer" characteristics, some decisions must be made and made quickly. Corporate worship is the single, most life-impacting activity of the church. Are we going to sabotage God's work just because we don't have the courage to face reality?
And the reality is this: before any of us can engage people in the authentic, interactive adoration of God, we must first of all become worshipers. That may mean stepping down off the platform and getting our lives in sync with God. It may mean sitting in the pew and learning how to worship for the very first time. Depending on our situation, it may mean a process ranging from weeks to years. But, face facts we must. There is only One worthy of our praise (Rev.4:11) and that One desires truth, not pretense; being, not performance. If and when we step back up and get behind the microphone, we must do it as an instrument, not the object of praise. And we must be willing to cast off our "glittering image" so that we reflect only the glorious image of Christ.

by Sally Morgenthaler

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Sermon Audio

One of the most amazing collections of Sermons that I have found. You can go back in time
as you hear the Word of the Lord over generations.  As part of making your calling and election
sure please make time to visit this site as often as possible.  As with all the sites I tell you about
take time explore them...you know your time is not yours any more...it belongs to Our Lord. 
Let the time that is short be redeemed for him...



Saturday, February 25, 2012

Blue Letter Bible

Simply the best online bible study site that I have found.
Please visit it and take the scriptures that God has put
before you and drink deeply as you see the richness of
God's word opened in the greatest of detail with an amazingly simple interface.



Friday, February 24, 2012

Preach the Word

Shall I, for fear of mortal man,
The Spirit's course in me restrain?
Or, undismayed, in deed and word
Be a true witness to my Lord
Awed by mortal's frown, shall I
Conceal the Word of God most high?
How then before Thee shall I dare
To stand, or how Thine anger bear
Shall I, soothe the unholy throng
Soften Thy truths, and smooth my tongue?
To gain earth's guilded toys, or flee
The cross, endured my Lord by Thee.
What then is he whose scorn I dread,
Whose wrath or hate makes me afraid?
A man! an heir of death, a slave
To sin! a bubble on the wave!
Yea! let man rage, since Thou wilt spread
Thy shadowing wings about my head;
Since in all pain Thy tender love
Will still my sure refreshment prove.
Give me Thy strength,O God of power;
Then let winds blow or tempest roar;
Thy faithful witness will I be;
'Tis fixed; I can do all through Thee.
~    John Wesley


Sermon Index

I know you will find a wealth of truth from the many sermons that are available here.
Some are in text form also.  I am always amazed at the timelyness of the words spoken
many years ago. Praise God the foundation never changes.
 I believe if you make this site a part of your spiritual diet you will
be firmly established in the truth.



Thursday, February 23, 2012

Hebrew Words for Praise

Halal  הלל -
Strongs word # H1984  
Halal is a primary Hebrew root word for praise. Our word "hallelujah" comes from this base word. It means
"to be clear, to shine, to boast, show, to rave, celebrate, to be clamorously foolish."
Total KJV Occurrences: 166
Psalm 113:1-3 Praise (halal) ye the Lord, praise (halal) o ye servants of the Lord, praise (halal) the name of the Lord.
Psalm 150:1 Praise (halal) the Lord! Praise (halal) God in his sanctuary; Praise (halal) him in his mighty expanse.
Psalm 149:3 Let them praise (halal) his name in the dance: let them sing praises with the timbrel and harp.
Yadah -ידה
Strongs word # H3034
Yadah is a verb with a root meaning, "the extended hand, to throw out the hand, therefore to worship with
extended hand." The opposite meaning is "to bemoan, the wringing of the hands." 
Total KJV Occurrences: 114
2Chr 20:21 Give thanks (yadah) to the Lord, for his loving kindness is everlasting.
Ps 63:1 So I will bless thee as long as I live; I will (yadah) lift up my hands in thy name.
Ps 107:15 Oh that men would praise (yadah) the Lord for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men.
Towdah or Todah - תּודה
Strongs word # H8426
Towdah comes from the same principle root word as yadah, but is used more specifically. Towdah literally means,
 "an extension of the hand in adoration, or acceptance." It is used for thanking God for "things not yet received" as well as things already at hand.
Total KJV Occurrences: 32
Ps 50:14 Offer unto God praise (towdah) and pay thy vows unto the Most High.
Ps 50:23 Whoso offereth praise (towdah) glorifieth me: and to him that ordereth his conversation aright will I shew the salvation of God.
Shabach - רוּע
Strongs word # H7321
Shabach means, "to shout, to address in a loud tone, to command, to triumph."
Total KJV Occurrences: 44
Ps 47:1  Oh clap your hands, all peoples; shout (shabach) to God with the voice of joy (or triumph).
Ps 145:4  One generation shall praise (shabach) thy works to another and declare thy mighty acts.
Isa 12:6  Cry aloud and shout (shabach) for joy, O inhabitant of Zion, For great in your midst is the Holy One of Israel.
Barak - בּרך
Strongs word # H1288
Barak means "to kneel down, to bless God as an act of adoration."
Total KJV Occurrences: 176
Ps 95:6 O come let us worship and bow down; let us kneel (barak) before the Lord our maker.
1Chr 29:20 Then David said to all the assembly, "Now bless (barak) the Lord your God." And all the assembly
blessed (barak) the Lord, the God of their fathers, and bowed low and did homage to the Lord and to the king.
Ps 34:1 I will bless (barak) the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
Zamar - זמר
Strongs word # H2167
Zamar means "to pluck the strings of an instrument, to sing, to praise; a musical word which is
largely involved with joyful expressions of music with musical instruments.
Total KJV Occurrences: 42
Ps 21:13 Be exalted O Lord, in Thine own strength, so will we sing and praise (zamar) Thy power.
1Chr 16:9 Sing to Him, sing praises (zamar) to Him; speak of all His wonders.
Ps 57:8-9 Awake my glory; awake harp and lyre, I will awaken the dawn!
I will give thanks to Thee, O Lord among the peoples; I will sing praises (zamar) to Thee among the nations.
Tehillah -  תּהלּה
Strongs word # H8416
Tehillah is derived from the word halal and means "the singing of halals,
to sing or to laud; it involves music, especially singing hymns of the Spirit.
Total KJV Occurrences: 57
Ps 22:3 Yet Thou art holy, O Thou who art enthroned upon the praises (tehillah) of Israel.
Ps 33:1 Rejoice in the Lord, o ye righteous, for praise (tehillah) is comely for the upright.
Isa 61:3 To grant to those who mourn in Zion, Giving them a garland instead of ashes, The oil of gladness instead of mourning,
The mantle of praise (tehillah) instead of the spirit of fainting, So they shall be called oaks of righteousness,
The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.


Tuesday, February 21, 2012


As God: ...  Joh 1:1-5; Php 2:6,9,10
As the Son of God: ...  Mt 3:17; Heb 1:6,8
As one with the Father: ...  Joh 10:30,38
As the First-born: ...  Col 1:15,18
As the First-begotten: ...  Heb 1:6
As Lord of lords, &c: ...  Re 17:14
As the image of God: ...  Col 1:15; Heb 1:3
As creator: ...  Joh 1:3; Col 1:16; Heb 1:2
As the Blessed of God: ...  Ps 45:2
As Mediator: ...  1Ti 2:5; Heb 8:6
As Prophet: ...  De 18:15,16; Ac 3:22
As Priest: ...  Ps 110:4; Heb 4:15
As King: ...  Isa 6:1-5; Joh 12:41
As Judge: ...  Mt 16:27; 25:31,33
As Shepherd: ...  Isa 40:10,11; Joh 10:11,14
As Head of the Church: ...  Eph 1:22
As the true Light: ...  Lu 1:78,79; Joh 1:4,9
As the foundation of the Church: ...  Isa 28:16
As the way: ...  Joh 14:6; Heb 10:19,20
As the truth: ...  1Jo 5:20; Re 3:7
As the life: ...  Joh 11:25; Col 3:4; 1Jo 5:11
As incarnate: ...  Joh 1:14
In his words: ...  Lu 4:22; Joh 7:46
In his works: ...  Mt 13:54; Joh 2:11
In his sinless perfection: ...  Heb 7:26-28
In the fulness of his grace and truth: ...  Ps 45:2; Joh 1:14
In his transfiguration: ...  Mt 17:2; 2Pe 1:16-18
In his exaltation: ...  Ac 7:55,56; Eph 1:21
In the calling of the Gentiles: ...  Ps 72:17; Joh 12:21,23
In the restoration of the Jews: ...  Ps 102:16
In his triumph: ...  Isa 63:1-3; Re 19:11,16
Followed his sufferings: ...  1Pe 1:10,11
Followed his resurrection: ...  1Pe 1:21
Is unchangeable: ...  Heb 1:10-12
Is incomparable: ...  So 5:10; Php 2:9
Imparted to saints: ...  Joh 17:22; 2Co 3:18
Celebrated by the redeemed: ...  Re 5:8-14; 7:9-12
Revealed in the gospel: ...  Isa 40:5
Saints shall rejoice at the revelation of: ...  1Pe 4:13
Saints shall behold, in heaven: ...  Joh 17:24Altogether lovely: ...  So 5:16|
Holy: ...  Lu 1:35; Ac 4:27; Re 3:7
Righteous: ...  Isa 53:11; Heb 1:9
Good: ...  Mt 19:16
Faithful: ...  Isa 11:5; 1Th 5:24
True: ...  Joh 1:14; 7:18; 1Jo 5:20
Just: ...  Zec 9:9; Joh 5:30; Ac 22:14
Guileless: ...  Isa 53:9; 1Pe 2:22
Sinless: ...  Joh 8:46; 2Co 5:21
Spotless: ...  1Pe 1:19
Innocent: ...  Mt 27:4
Harmless: ...  Heb 7:26
Resisting temptation: ...  Mt 4:1-10
Obedient to God the Father: ...  Ps 40:8; Joh 4:34; 15:10
Zealous: ...  Lu 2:49; Joh 2:17; 8:29
Meek: ...  Isa 53:7; Zec 9:9; Mt 11:29
Lowly in heart: ...  Mt 11:29
Merciful: ...  Heb 2:17
Patient: ...  Isa 53:7; Mt 27:14
Long-suffering: ...  1Ti 1:16
Compassionate: ...  Isa 40:11; Lu 19:41
Benevolent: ...  Mt 4:23,24; Ac 10:38
Loving: ...  Joh 13:1; 15:13
Self-denying: ...  Mt 8:20; 2Co 8:9
Humble: ...  Lu 22:27; Php 2:8
Resigned: ...  Lu 22:42
Forgiving: ...  Lu 23:34
Subject to His parents: ...  Lu 2:51
Saints are conformed to: ...  Ro 8:29


Saturday, February 18, 2012

The Holy Spirit

God in the Person of the Holy Spirit

1. Teaches (Jn. 14:26)
John 14:26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name,
will teach you everything, and will cause you to remember everything I said to you.

2. Testifies (Jn. 15:26)
John 15:26 When the Advocate comes, whom I will send you from the Father the
Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father – he will testify about me,

3. Reproves (Jn. 16:8-11)
John 16:8 And when he comes, he will prove the world wrong concerning sin
and righteousness and judgment
John 16:9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in me;
John 16:10 concerning righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will see me no longer;
John 16:11 and concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.

4. Guides into truth (Jn. 16:13)
John 16:13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth.
For he will not speak on his own authority, but will speak whatever he hears,
and will tell you what is to come.

5. Speaks (Acts 13:2)
Acts 13:2 While they were serving the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said,
“Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”

6. Calls men into service (Acts 13:2)
Acts 13:2 While they were serving the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said,
“Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”

7. Directs men in service (Acts 16:6-7)
Acts 16:6 They went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been
prevented by the Holy Spirit from speaking the message in the province of Asia.
Acts 16:7 When they came to Mysia, they attempted to go into Bithynia,
but the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them to do this,

8. Prays and intercedes for us (Rom. 8:26-27)
Rom 8:26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness,
for we do not know how we should pray, but the Spirit himself
intercedes for us with inexpressible groanings.
Rom 8:27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the
Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes on behalf of the saints according to God’s will.

9. Searches all things, even the deep things of God (1 Cor. 2:10)
1Cor 2:10 God has revealed these to us by the Spirit.
For the Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God.

10. Works through us (1 Cor. 12:11)
1Cor 12:11 It is one and the same Spirit, distributing as he decides to each person,
who produces all these things.

The Person of the Holy Spirit can be...

1. Blasphemed (Mt. 12:31-32)
Matt 12:31 For this reason I tell you, people will be forgiven for every sin
and blasphemy, but the blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.
Matt 12:32 Whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven.
But whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven, either in this age or in the age to come.

2. Lied to (Acts 5:3)
Acts 5:3 But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to
lie to the Holy Spirit and keep back for yourself part of the proceeds from the sale of the land?

3. Tempted or tested (Acts 5:9)
Acts 5:9 Peter then told her, “Why have you agreed together to test
the Spirit of the Lord? Look! The feet of those who have buried your
husband are at the door, and they will carry you out!”

4. Resisted (Acts 7:51)
Acts 7:51 “You stubborn people, with uncircumcised hearts and ears!
You are always resisting the Holy Spirit, like your ancestors did!

5. Grieved (Eph. 4:30)
Eph 4:30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were
sealed for the day of redemption.

6. Insulted (Heb. 10:29)
Heb 10:29 How much greater punishment do you think that person
deserves who has contempt for the Son of God, and profanes the blood
 of the covenant that made him holy, and insults the Spirit of grace?

If we live by faith and obedience we can expect the Spirit to do amost holy and wonderful work in us. "If we live by the Spirit"—this is our faith, for we believe that the Holy Spirit abides in us; then "let us also walk by the Spirit"—this is our obedience (Gal. 5.25). We ought to believe simply and restfully that our Lord has given us His Spirit, now abiding in us. Believe in His gift and trust that the Holy Spirit indwells you. Take this as the secret of Christ’s life in you: His Spirit dwells in your innermost spirit. Meditate on it, believe in it, and remember it until this glorious truth produces within you a holy fear and wonderment that the Holy Spirit indeed abides in you! Now learn to follow His leading. Such guidance emerges not from the mind or thoughts; it is something of life. We must yield to God and let His Spirit govern everything. He will manifest the Lord Jesus in our life because this is His task.


Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Not so long ago

It wasn't so long ago that you were mired in that old stagnant life of sin. You let the world, which doesn't know the first thing about living, tell you how to live. You filled your lungs with polluted unbelief, and then exhaled disobedience. We all did it, all of us doing what we felt like doing, when we felt like doing it, all of us in the same boat. It's a wonder God didn't lose his temper and do away with the whole lot of us. Instead, immense in mercy and with an incredible love, he embraced us. He took our sin-dead lives and made us alive in Christ. He did all this on his own, with no help from us! Then he picked us up and set us down in highest heaven in company with Jesus, our Messiah. Now God has us where he wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in Christ Jesus. Saving is all his idea, and all his work. All we do is trust him enough to let him do it. It's God's gift from start to finish! We don't play the major role. If we did, we'd probably go around bragging that we'd done the whole thing! No, we neither make nor save ourselves. God does both the making and saving. He creates each of us by Christ Jesus to join him in the work he does, the good work he has gotten ready for us to do, work we had better be doing. But don't take any of this for granted. It was only yesterday that you outsiders to God's ways had no idea of any of this, didn't know the first thing about the way God works, hadn't the faintest idea of Christ. You knew nothing of that rich history of God's covenants and promises in Israel, hadn't a clue about what God was doing in the world at large. Now because of Christ dying that death, shedding that blood you who were once out of it altogether are in on everything.


Happy Valentines


Saturday, February 11, 2012


Sometimes I have a test of faith as I mature in God. He doesn’t ask me to understand Him. but He
understands me perfectly. I don’t always understand Him. but I love Him anyway. Sometimes He is very difficult to understand, and I say, "Lord don’t look at my tears. Please, look at me, in here, where I’m saying, Yes, Lord. Yes, Lord."
The Lord has a right to leave me without a touch of His Presence for weeks or months at a time. I have my contact without my emotional reaction. If He wants to leave for China for three months, it’s all right if I don’t get blessed in three months, or even sing a little song while at home walking around.—I pay a price for every last thing I get from God. I pay a price for it, and I want to. He is not going to baby me.—We have to learn that, and that isn’t pleasant.—But God is doing something inside of me like a tornado. Then out of that I come out with: "The Lord is wonderful!—He IS wonderful!"The further we go on in God, the less He is going to honor that field of the emotions. We have to learn to walk with the Lord without His conscious Presence, which is very terrifying. Less and less are we dependent on our old devotional patterns that served for our living. How can faith develop if He is going to humor us along all the time?In those difficult places we will never be able to synchronize the state in which we are moving with our fluctuating emotions. They will not always flow together. We are trying to let our emotions run parallel with our experience.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Gods Will


More than Conquerors

"In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him that loved us." (Romans 8. 37.) Calvary means that Christ not only bore on that Tree your sins, but that He carried to the Tree the sinner—carried you there. When you come to the point of recognising that God does not patch up the old life, but calls upon you to reckon it crucified, and to take from Him a new one, you will find that the new life has in it all the characteristics which belong to it. The old Adam-life has its own characteristics, and the new Adam-life has its own characteristics. It is necessary to repeat this message of the Cross again and again, for the truth only lays hold of us "line upon line" until at last it grips us and effectually works in us who believe. Moreover, to that Cross of Calvary, Christ, as the Representative Man, not only carried the sinner, but on that Cross and through the death of the Cross He utterly conquered Satan (Colossians 2. 15). There is therefore no need on the part of a Christian for a trace of fear of Satan. Satan is an absolutely conquered foe to the soul who knows:                                              


Saturday, February 4, 2012

The Kingdom of God is at Hand


The will of an Overcomer

Revelation 2:17  To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna.

This means that other interests must be "set aside" at the beckoning of the Lord. Even legitimate things that bring us into a conflict with the Lord’s interests, which seemingly cannot be put off. In order for us to be in this "overcoming" relationship with Him, the Lord requires the "right" and the "priority" to our time. When He deals with us, we must overcome all other interests and activities. We must say "no" to things in order to say "yes" to Him. This may be very costly, as it cuts across all the human drives within us.


House of Devotion

"If we build God a house of devotion
he'll build us a house of ministry"



Friday, February 3, 2012

Christian Classics

I know you will blessed as you access the writing of many great
followers of Christ.  It will make your foundation is him certain as
you seek you will find Gods special plan for your life. Start seeking
him today and never stop. Obey his calling and drawing on your life.
The darkness in your life will simply disappear in the light of Gods word!



Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The Word

This a a Free program you can download and install on your computer that will allow you to study the Bible in many versions with add on modules to dig deeper into each verse. Take time to search for the free add on modules. I like the King James plus that gives you the Strongs word definition in a seperate dialog box. May God bless you as you search his word that His Son Jesus may be revealed to you.