True Worship That Liberates
Vs. 29 - 31 The jailer called for lights, and rushing in, he fell down trembling before Paul and Silas. Then he brought them outside and said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They answered, “Believe on the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
The underlying framework for most of the world's religions offers this assurance that for all the good you do, your reward in life will be greater - or you'll achieve liberation in some way. Paul & Silas' response in the passage above, is what sets Christ apart from all other religions in the world. To believe in the Lord Jesus is to not only acknowledge in mind the "Great Exchange" where Jesus paid the ultimate price for our transgressions in exchange for His life. It is to also live a life in absolute submission to His will so we may be worthy of the salvation already given to us.
Ephesians 2:8-10 affirms the call to submission when we are reminded of this truth - " For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do". How incredible is this gift of God! It leads us to how significant it is to ultimately be true in our worship, with the lives we live.
Our theme for today is to focus on True Worship that Liberates. True worship is worship centered on absolute surrender of the self, so that Christ is allowed to take control. To worship in wholeness, prayer is perhaps the greatest instrument one can use in worship to communicate with Christ to let Him take control. For when we earnestly pray, worship no longer becomes a means of escape, but a conscious act of obedience on our part to submit ourselves completely to God without expecting anything in return for it. No amount of good deeds we do can ever bring us the liberation we seek, for Salvation is at heart's door if we truly believe in the Lord Jesus as Paul and Silas did in today's bible reading.
Let us not just confine worship to what we do every Sunday in church, or at any religious gathering; but also - let us keep Christ at the center of our hearts and worship Him in the lives we live as we were made to do. For when we worship in Spirit and in Truth - we allow for God to enter and commune with us in Spirit. This spiritual communion with God is the greatest liberation.
Father Almighty, we praise you and give you thanks for your Love which endures forever. We thank you for the price paid, to bring us all life everlasting. We pray for the strength to stand firm in Your Word, and to always do what is pleasing in Your sight. Help us worship You always in Spirit and in Truth. Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
True worship that is pleasing to God, radiates throughout a person’s entire life. - A.W.Tozer
Kiara George, Canadian MTC, Toronto, ON
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church