Event and Everday (Wk 4 – Worship Matters)
Jason White






Worship is both an event and an everyday experience.  After gathering as the Church for corporate worship, we are sent out as the Church to worship every day of our individual lives.  We are Jesus’ instruments, and as His Life is expressed through us, He receives glory, honor, and praise.  All areas of our lives become an opportunity to worship the Lord our God!

Romans 12:1-2: I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.  Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.





Sermon Audio Transcript
So of course, living in today's day and age, this era that we live in, it's no surprise that each and every single one of us carry one of these around in our pockets, smartphone, right, and it is a phone, right. And you can use it right for just that. I mean, you could use the smart phones to, to make phone calls and to receive phone calls. And that's a good thing, right? I mean, many of us remember a day in time, when that wasn't possible, when you didn't have the opportunity to pull this out of your pocket and make a phone call or receive a phone call at any point in time, no matter where it is that you are. And so that's a good thing that we can use it in those ways. But you and I know that if that is the only way that we are using the smartphones, then we are missing out on so much more than it was designed to actually be able to do we know that of course, we can text on these things and listen to music and watch videos and TV shows. And you can take pictures and read books and play games and you can order food, you can learn a new language, you can use it as a wallet and pay people or they can pay you and I could go on and on and on. And so to use it in that way, would be to use it in a way that is so much less than what it was designed for and what it is capable of doing. And so today, what I want you to see, though, is that the same thing is true about worship. Throughout this worship matters message series, we have primarily been focused on corporate worship, what we do when we gather together here on Sunday mornings as God's people, and he works in us and through us, in order to worship bring glory and honor to his name. He does that through our hearts and our minds and through our singing and the raising of our hands and diving into his word and giving of offerings and praying and taking communion together and all the above. And it is so good that we do this so good when we come together and participate in corporate worship together. And it's important, it is important for us to do as sons and daughters of God the Father as brothers and sisters in Christ. And that's why we've spent several weeks discussing the various matters of worship when we come together in this way. But if this is all that we do, if that is the only thing that we consider worship, if that is the only way that God or we allow God to be worshipped in our lives, then we are missing out on so much more that we were created for, and designed for the current because worship is way, much more than that. And we see this in God's word. One of the places that we see this is in what Paul writes to the church at Rome, in the beginning of the 12th Chapter of his letter to them, he says this, I appeal to you, Therefore, brothers and sisters, by something by the mercies of God, this is the way he starts this sentence off. And we have to stop right here when we see this word because as you know, anytime we see the word therefore we have to stop, we have to ask what's it there for because he's basing what he's about to say on something that he's said before. And we're picking up at the place where we haven't read what it is that he said before. And sometimes when you see this word, and you'd look back for the context of what the basis is that they're going to say, it can be just a few sentences before that. Sometimes it could be a whole chapter before, but a lot of times, it's often much broader than that. And most commentators believe that that therefore, that Paul references right here is referring back to everything that he has written over the first 11 chapters before he gets here. So based on all that I've said in those 11 chapters, he's going to appeal to them to do something. All right, and he's going to do that based on the mercies of God. In other words, we see that this must be what he was elaborating on and have been talking about over 11 chapters. And it is what Paul was doing when he wrote to the church at Rome was to make sure that they understood and knew the full gospel message. And you and I know of course in order to understand how good the gospel is, which is the good news gospel just means good news, the good news Because of Jesus Christ, and in order to know how good the good news really is, we have to know how bad the bad news really is. And so the apostle Paul, before he can get to the good news has to start with the bad news. And this is what he does. He spends three chapters talking about the bad news and highlighting various aspects of that. And it finally gets to a point where he just sums it all up in this way. He says, There is no one righteous, not even one. There is no one who understands there is no one who seeks God all have turned away, They have together become worthless, there is no one who does good, not even one. pretty depressing, isn't it? We talk about bad news that that's bad news. But how can Paul say that? Why is this true that there's no one righteous and not even one and no one who understands and no one who seeks God and all of these things? Well, it's because of something else that Paul said here just a little bit later in the chapter. When he says, for all, notice, again, all means all not some have what have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, it's because of sin, that we all fall short, and that no one seeks to understand and leads to all these ways that through his outward behavior that goes against who God is, and all of the things that we see going on in the world and in our lives sometimes. So this is the bad news because of sin. We have been separated from our source who is God, and that's left us spiritually dead. And that leaves us in a place where we're not able to do the good that God created us to do in the first place. Paul had to make sure that we understood that that we see that that the church at Rome knew that was the truth about them. You've got to know how bad the bad news is to be able to appreciate the good news, which Paul began to get into as he goes on chapter five, verse eight, he says, But God, two of the greatest words and all of the Bible right there, there's no one good no one who understands, and on and on and on. But God, God intervened and stepped in, he did something he demonstrated his own love for us in this and that while we were still sinners, not whenever we finally got our act together, not whenever we showed him that we really wanted to try to be good, and that we were taking steps to have better behavior. But even while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. This is how he demonstrated his love for us. It wasn't just an emotional feeling of love. There was an action oriented, a sacrificial kind of love that was demonstrated by God and allowing his one and only Son Jesus Christ to die for us. But why to die for what? Well for our sins, of course, he was born fully God and fully man and had no sense to pay for himself. And so out of His love, He could take all of our sins upon himself and pay the penalty for them at the cross, which he did. And then he was buried and we know that he was raised from the dead, defeating the power of sin and death forever. And now Jesus out of His mercies the mercies that Paul referenced in chapter 12, verse one by His mercies offers us salvation as a gift. One of the things that Paul said in this letter to was that the wages of sin was death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus, it's a gift. It's not something that you and I can earn. There's nothing that we can do to receive the salvation. But just like any other gift, you have to receive a gift. If I offered my cell phone to one of you today as a gift and said, You can have it it's a gift, it's free, you would have to actually physically walk up here and grab it and receive it before it became yours, no matter how bad I wanted to give it to you. And the same is true for you and I the offers that to us as a gift, but we receive it through faith and Paul's mentioned that over and over throughout Romans so far that were justified by faith, not by works of the law and so on and so on. Now, after he gets to the good news, and he points these things out, the Christ died for us the basics were justified by faith. He gets into way more than just our sins being forgiven. He really begins to unpack kind of the benefits of being justified freely by faith. For example, one of the things that he says here, this is the last thing we'll look at. And we'll go back and see what Paul says and how this applies to chapter 12, verse one, but he says this, don't you know? In other words, this is really important that you know this, if you don't know this, right? Don't you know that all of us, not some of us, all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus, were baptized into his death. We were therefore buried with Him through baptism, into death, in order that just as Christ was raised from the dead, throughout the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life, you and I don't just have our sins forgiven. When we put our faith and trust in Jesus for salvation, we receive new life, the old ISIS dead, buried and gone. And we're raised up into this new union with Him where we're given a new heart and new life and we have a new nature in him. And these are all the kinds of things that Paul is unpacking for 11 chapters, how bad the bad news is,and this is how good the good news is that it's a gift and you can have your sins forgiven and receive all this new life. And you're so different. And you're so changed. And so then Paul gets all the way back to now, Chapter 12, where we said it and said, Now, now, I appealed to you, therefore, all right, in other words, based on all of those things that I just said, how good all of these things happen from the mercies of God that have been showered upon you and showered upon you here is an appropriate response, here is what I'm urging you to do, since all of those things are true, that I have just unpacked. And this is what he says is he goes on, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. There's, there's a lot here, there's so much here that he's making an appeal to them to talking about the appropriate response based on the full gospel message. And the thing that he said. So let's just spend a few minutes kind of breaking each part of this down. The very first thing that he says to do here is to present what does it mean to present? Well, in your translation, you may see the word offer, right? To offer something means to present or offer means to make yourself available to something the Apostle Paul also use this exact same word once already in the original Greek in Romans earlier, and here's what he said there. He said, present yourselves to God. So again, offer yourselves to God, as those who have been brought from death to life. Why? Because you have been brought from death to life. All right, since you had been brought from death to life, all for yourselves to God, and your members that your body, the parts of your body, to God, as instruments for righteousness, to offer and make yourself available is to make yourself available to him to say, I'm the instrument, I am allowing you to be at work in me and through me to play this guitar, you need someone else the guitar is just the instrument, right? It is available for someone to come up here and begin to play that instrument. And in the same way, God or Paul is saying the appropriate response to everything that he's written about the gospel message is to say, I make myself available for you as the master to play me to work in me and through me. Now, to go back to this then this is what it means to present. All right, but he goes on and says present what to present our bodies. Well, when we talk about bodies here, we're talking about the whole self, right? We're talking about mind, we're talking about your emotions, we're talking about your wheel, we're talking about your hands and your voices and your feet and your knees and every part of you your whole self. So present your entire self as a living sacrifice. Now this would have been something the original audience and Rome that he was writing to him Your would have picked up on and they would understand. They were familiar with sacrifices, especially the Jewish Christians, right. And even the Gentiles would have heard much about this from the Jewish people, right? It was all about sacrifices. It was all about blood sacrifices we see in the Old Testament, these blood sacrifices that had to be made to cover sins to temporarily cover them. They didn't do away with sins, they simply covered sins. And so life in the Old Testament was sacrificed. A death was experienced in order to be able to cover sin. The good news, though, is that we're told in Hebrews, that Jesus made a once for all sacrifice. It was the sacrifice that ended all blood sacrifices, that no more of those kinds of sacrifices would have to be made. And so no, blood sacrifices are no longer acceptable to God, because Jesus has made the ones for all ultimate sacrifices. But what is appropriate sacrifice to God now, is a living sacrifice. One who has been brought from death to life, we're full of a physical life that he created and gave to us. But we're also full of spiritual life now with him living and dwelling in us. And so we can make ourselves available to him as a holy and acceptable person before God because that's who he has made us into. Now, we present ourselves wholesales as living sacrifices, which are holy and acceptable to God. And then he finishes up and says, this is by when you're doing that this is spiritual. I wish I could keep going. Worship. What's what we're talking about today? That's what we've been talking about for the last four weeks. Worship matters. Worship is not just what we do. When we gather here together on Sunday mornings, if we are available to him, and he is the instrument, then God is at work in us and through us all of the time. And if we're the instrument, and he's the one at work playing it, who gets all the credit, who gets all the glory? He does. So therefore, we see it's worship. Once again, you go back to the guitar, if someone comes up here and picks up that instrument against to play it, no one goes, Wow, what a great guitar, man just look at that thing. Go, right, you're gonna what a great guitar player, they're playing that instrument so well. And so when it's God's activity in and through us as an instrument, it speaks of him, and people are able to go, wow, look at God on display in and through that instrument, right? It's worship. It glorifies and honors him. And so to just worship on Sunday mornings, is to miss out on all of the rest of what you were designed to do and created to do and to be a part of with him to bring Him glory and honor and ultimate worship. This is the way Douglas Moo writes about it in his commentary. On Romans, he says, Paul emphasizes the degree here to which our worship involves even the very prosaic parts of our life. He gives examples as we eat our food. We worship God by thanking Him for what He has given us, honoring Him with our conversation, and providing for the bodies he has given us. As we sweat on the treadmill. We worship God by seeking to be good stewards of the body he has given us as we seek to avoid driving with the same egotistical aggressiveness as others, ie road rage. We worship God by burying and displaying the fruit of the Spirit. While we're on the road. We do our work at our jobs to the very best of our ability, worshiping God by giving our best to our employers. And he sums it up and says one of the greatest temptations in the Christian life is to bifurcate the spirit spiritual world from the material to begin thinking that only certain parts of our lives have eternal significance. All of life is to be a continuous worship of the God who created and redeemed by us. And these are just a few a examples. He just highlights a few areas of life, all of life. Everything that is that we do after we leave on Sunday mornings will be an act of worship as we make ourselves available to him as vessels again, because it's his life. It's his activity that is being expressed through us as His instruments and all of those different areas of life. And so it is an act of worship to Him, it speaks of him, he receives the glory, He receives the honor, Paul says, this is an appropriate response to the good news of Jesus Christ, to the complete forgiveness that you have, and the new life that you have all based on his mercy, to give you these things that you just received by faith, now, after Paul says this, in verse one, he goes on and gets a little bit more practical about what this kind of looks like and how this plays out to a degree. The next thing that he says is, do not be conformed to this world.Now, what is he referencing there as the world what does that mean to not be conformed to the world? Well, we know that Jesus referenced Satan as the ruler of this world, ever since sin entered into the world, there is some way that Satan has exercising his dominion and, and power over and influencing things that happen in our world. That's not to say that God doesn't sit above it all and isn't in ultimate control, but as the ruler of the world, then that means that that must play out in a certain way. I personally like the way that John Mark comer defines the world based on several of these things that we see in Scripture. And just kind of quickly, here's the way that he defines the world. He says the world is a system of ideas, values, morals, and practices, and social norms that are integrated into the mainstream, and eventually institutionalized in a culture corrupted. Notice that culture corrupted by what the twin sins of rebellion against God, and the redefinition of good and evil, which we see all the way back in Genesis chapter three in the garden. And so Paul says here, Don't be conformed to what the world sees as truth. Don't be conformed to the ideas that you see in the world. Don't be conformed to what the world values and say, oh, all value, what it is that is going that the world values, don't look at the world and its morals and say, oh, I'll just share those morals, don't look at the world's practices and social norms and go well, that must be what's right, and just fall into line with those things. Why? Because those met our manmade values, practices, morals, all influenced by Satan. So who gets recognized and all of that? Not God, right? If we're talking about making ourselves available to him, to be able to worship him, but we're conforming to the world, and we're acting out in our own flesh, and what we think is right, and what the world says is right, influenced all by Satan, who's the ruler of this world, that that speaks of him. And it certainly doesn't bring glory and honor and worship to God in that way, when we're conforming to the world. So he says, Don't do that. But instead, then do this. So don't be conformed to this world, but be transformed how, by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good, acceptable and perfect. This, by the way, is written in the passive voice. This is not something that you do. This is what someone else does to you, as your mind is renewed to something. And what Paul's talking about here is our mind is renewed to the truth. As we begin to be open to and focusing on God's truth, he will reveal those truths to us. In other words, we don't again focus on what we think is true about all those areas that we just talked about. We can't just say, Well, I have my truth and you have your truth because God is truth. He is the Creator, He is the designer of all things. And so he knows what he created them for, and how they function and work best. And so again, if I claim to have my truth, and this is what's best for me, in the way I live my life, and I'm worshiping myself, I'm certainly not worshipping the God who created me and design me and know what's best for me. And that reflects me who's been made in His image. But if my mind is renewed to His truths, then my mind is going to understand and begin to understand what is good, what is acceptable for who I've been remade into in Christ, and what is perfect, what is the best thing for me to be doing with my life. And as I begin to discern those things, and He reveals those things to me and empowers me, then that speaks of him, he receives the glory, He receives the honor, he is worshipped. Again, this is all a work of God that he does in us and through us. Again, it's passive. We talked about taking this into consideration with verse one, where he says all for yourselves, make yourself available as an instrument. So he's got to be the one that reveals truth to your mind. You can't understand the truth in and of yourself. God is not capable of being understood and known without him, revealing who he is to us. And so it has a work of the Spirit. And we just make ourselves available for him to influence our minds and reveal to illuminate his truth to us, and then to be able to carry out those truths about the way that we're living our lives, which again, all speaks of him in is an act of worship, because it's his activity, and not ours. So this is what we need to know today. This is what we need to understand Scripture says about worship not just being what we do on Sunday mornings, but what we do all throughout the week, and each and every, each and every area of our lives. And so we have to ask the question, if that's what I need to know, then, now, what now that I know it now what, right? How does this play out in my life? What does it look like for me to offer myself to him as an act of worship? How does the rest of my life outside of Sunday mornings bring glory and honor to him instead of reflecting and pointing fingers at me, and what this really will do it should do is cause us to reflect then on every single area of our lives. Because if we are living sacrifices, and we're making ourselves available to him, the no area of life is off limits. It is possible for God to be worshipped, and to be an act of worship in every single area of our lives, not just the things that we consider spiritual things, right. And so we just begin to think I don't have time to go through an exhaustive list, but we start to think, Okay, well, what does that look like in the area of relationships for me that God, how do you want to work through me as a spouse to bring glory and honor to your name? God? How do you want to work through me as a parent or a grandparent or as a child, a brother or sister to bring glory and honor to your name to be an act of worship towards you, God? How do you want to work through me and my relationship as a boyfriend or a girl? Friend? How do you want me to treat my boyfriend or girlfriend in a way that reflects and honors you and actually glorifies you and honors you and brings worship to you? What activities do we engage in, that don't bring glory and honor to you and are more reflective of the world's values, rather than your truth and your values and who you've created me to be an act in those areas of relationships, we make our selves available to him, for him to work through us in all of our relationships. And He guides us, not what we think about they should be not what we think we should do. And notice we're not praying and asking him to fix or do something in any other person's life. We're going I'm making myself available to you as your instrument. How do you want to use me in these relationships that brings glory and honor to your name? What about another area? What about your job or your school or the sports that you play? Because again, all of these if no area of life is off limits can be a way that you worship God at a job that you do every single day? When you go to school every single day, when you step on a court or a field and begin to play sports, every single day, we ask the question, God, how do I do my work at my job in a way that glorifies and honors you that speaks of you instead of me? God? How do I walk into my school and complete my assignments in a way that brings you glory and honor and worships you? How do I step onto the field or the court and compete and play in a way that honors you? How do I treat my boss? How do I treat my co workers? How do I treat my classmates? How do I treat my coaches and my teammates in a way that reflect and honor you, I'm your instrument. You've put me in this job, you've put me in this school, you've put me on this court or on this field. You work in me and through me to reflect and glorify and honor your name. What about in relation to food or alcohol or other substances? God,I'm open to you to reveal to me your truths. And how it is that I interact with food and alcohol and things that go into my body, that either don't bring You glory and honor, or the way that it does bring You glory and honor to do I sit down at a meal and cut into my steak and take a bite of that steak and have an explosion of flavors go off in my mouth and say, Wow, there is such a great God for creating this food that is not just going to be about my nourishment, but allows me to enjoy it so much right now in this way? Or do I take a bite of that steak and go, Wow, there's so much life in that steak, I need more steak. Right? Because then it becomes an idol in a way of the world. And we're not bringing worship and glory and honor and allowing those things to reflect Him in those ways. What about in this area here sex and sexuality and gender? Do again, we approach those things and go, well? How do I want to engage with sexual activities? And what do I think is right? And what is the world think is right about those things? Or do I be transformed by the renewing of our mind and say, I'm an instrument show me and reveal your truth to how you created this to be a good thing? And in what area you created it and designed it for? And empower me to live it out in that way? or what not? What do I think about my sexuality or whatever gender or what the world says about those things, but what you say I'm open to how you influence me in these areas, regardless of how I'm feeling what it is that I'm thinking what I hope is right about these things, you influence me and empower me to live them out to bring worship and glory and honor to your name. What about politics? Lord, I'm open to you and you leave me how you want me to vote? And how to interact with people that see things differently from me, what about finances? Right? And no area is off limits. Lord, it's your money on your instrument? How do you want me to engage with it? How do you want me to spend it? How do you want to save it? How do want me to give it away? What do you want me to do in a way that brings glory and honor to your name, if no area is off limits, then that means the hobbies and my entertainment. And even whenever I'm involved in social media, God can work in me and through me as an instrument to bring glory and honor to his name to worship Him through the hobbies that I participate in. Now, that doesn't mean that it can't become something else. If the life is found in the hobby, and that's all you spend your time doing. Because that's where you see the life and it's not in God, then certainly become something else. So we're constantly engaging in our entertainment and social media and hobbies. But as we enter those in a way where we're his instrument, and we can participate in those things with him, then there's ways to do that, that bring Him glory and honor. What about the way that we serve people the way that we tell other people about the good news and the things that have gone on in our lives? I'm your instrument? How do you want to love people through me? How do you want to serve people through me? Who do you want me to tell others of your goodness and mercy that I've in been impacted by in my own life? Hopefully, even just naming certain areas, there's been some of those that the Lord's caught your attention about to go I want to I brought you here this morning to hear this truth about what worship is, and then how it specifically applies to maybe this one areas, all I'm focusing in on you right now. Maybe it's two, maybe it's three, maybe it was all of them because all you've ever thought about was this is what worship is in no part of your life was ever involved in bringing worship glory and honor to his name. But only of course, you can know that. Overall, what my hope and prayer is, is as we close, we would just be able to say maybe a prayer like this god. I do not look to my own flesh or to the world to influence the way I live my life, Lord, because because because of your mercy, to bring me from death to life, I offer my life myself to you. I'm your instrument. Reveal your truth to me. Express your life through my speech and my actions and in all areas of life. May people look at me in May they see you. May you receive all the glory and honor and praise for what you do in me and through me, use me to worship you with all areas of my life.