Someone recently read Parts 1 & 2, and then they asked me this pertinent question.
Question: “Cannot evangelism be considered worship? Worship is defined as giving God glory, and I’m sure that obeying Him by spreading the gospel gives Him glory.”
Answer: Yes, witnessing is definitely a form of adoration where you are saying to someone, “Wow, Let me tell you about something that is wonderful.” Witnessing is resulting worship, or a result of worship. Witnessing is telling someone ABOUT Jesus AFTER you had a direct experience WITH Jesus. What came first? Witnessing or the experience of an encounter with Jesus? Salvation is the first experience of worshiping God. When you get saved you are declaring something like, “You are the Son of God”, or “You are the Saviour of the world”, or “You are Lord”. With the mouth confession is made unto salvation. When you get saved, your heart/mouth is confessing directly to Him, with Him, not just about Him…That is direct worship. What is the resulting worship? Telling others about Him. They go together. Direct worship to Him is your lifeline. We must maintain both the one-on-one lifeline, and the corporate lifeline in order to maintain fresh witness. He is there when we are telling others about Him, but nothing can replace the strength you receive when you Directly worship Him alone and with other believers. Experience Him, Worship Him, Be WITH Him, then talk about Him. Keep it fresh. Worship comes first, and witness completes worship. God bless you!
Without Worship of Him, there is no witness of Him. As we saw earlier, Scripture makes it clear that He wants us to worship Him gathered together. This is vital. We must maintain the lifeline of worship unto God and keep it fresh. Before people want to hear about what Jesus did for me forty years ago, they want to hear how I am experiencing Him now.
If you are not experiencing Him in your corporate gatherings, it could be just a “season” that you are going through, or perhaps you need to re-examine what you are doing in these gatherings. I recently read a post where a proponent of “mission before worship” described the average worship service as, “a series of singing songs about God, saying a couple of prayers, and hearing some sermon”. Wow! This makes me feel sad. He wasn’t experiencing God in a direct, tangible, up-close reality. It sounds like none of them were. No wonder he wants to place Mission before Church! For Him and others, Mission gives them a greater sense of experiencing God. Why? Because the average corporate worship service has become so deluded that some people have a more realistic experience talking ABOUT God, then they do with what has been presented to them as corporately worshiping God. This is so sad because without the experience of real fresh water corporate worship, our witness and our growth in God can’t reach its full potential. All plants need fresh water first before trying to create seed after seed.
Now I understand. I didn’t really understand what was going on with the “Mission before Worship-Church” mindset until I read this guy’s post last week. Like I’ve said in earlier posts, I once went to a church where the presence of God in a corporate gathering was quite vibrant every week (Plenty of churches will tell you that they are “experiencing God in worship”, but if just stays inside the four walls, they are fooling themselves). Many people were being saved, baptized, delivered, filled, discipled, and witnessing on a continual basis. Lives kept changing and the church exploded. My own witness was more effective at this time in my life more than at any other point. Why? Among many things, we had the corporate worship going in the right direction. The “well” was overflowing every week. We were were able to “fill our buckets” with “fresh water” to deliver to dry and thirsty people. Some people, including preachers, simply have not had this as their normal church experience.
God help us all to connect with you in a way that unclogs the pipes and allows your water to flow through us to others.