We're thankful that you joined us for this week's ToGather.church! We pray that today's time of praise blesses you. Whether you are alone or with friends, family, home group, or house church, please know that the Lord's followers are joining you from all around the world to honor our Savior. (Find out more.) This week we focus on praising God and ascribing to our LORD the glory due him as our God, Creator, King, and Savior.
As we begin praising God for all that he is and all that he has done for us, let's confess, in song with Big Daddy Weave, that we are "Overwhelmed" by God's majesty and grace:
For thousands of years, God's people have used Psalm 8 as a way to both meditate on God's majesty and also praise the LORD for his grace extended to us through his tender love and care. As we read this psalm, we are joining God's people throughout the centuries in praise to our majestic and glorious LORD:
O LORD, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory
above the heavens.
Out of the mouth of babies and infants,
you have established strength because of your foes,
to still the enemy and the avenger.
When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,
the son of man that you care for him?
Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings
and crowned him with glory and honor.
You have given him dominion over the works of your hands;
you have put all things under his feet,
all sheep and oxen,
and also the beasts of the field,
the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea,
whatever passes along the paths of the seas.
O LORD, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
(Prayer of praise incorporated from Psalm 8:1-9 ESV.)
Let's join Shane & Shane in singing an adaptation of this psalm into a modern song:
Yes, O God, the Creator, and our "Abba" Father, we praise you as the one and only majestic LORD! Amen.
Opening the Scriptures:
In a moment, we will open the Scriptures and let them speak to us about honoring God and giving him the praise he deserves as LORD. As we prepare to open these Scriptures, let's join Hillsong United in the song, "So Will I," and commit to joining all of creation in worshiping our great and glorious God:
This song is rooted in the themes of Psalm 19. Let's take a moment and remind ourselves of the opening words of this psalm of praise:
The heavens proclaim the glory of God.
The skies display his craftsmanship.
Day after day they continue to speak;
night after night they make him known.
They speak without a sound or word;
their voice is never heard.
Yet their message has gone throughout the earth,
and their words to all the world.
(Psalm 19:1-4 NLT)
God is worthy of all our praise — more than our finite minds can comprehend or our inadequate vocabulary adequately proclaim. Nevertheless, our Verse of the Day commands us to worship the LORD as he deserves:
Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name;
worship the LORD in the splendor of his holiness.
What does it mean to ascribe to the LORD the glory that is due him?
How do we give God the honor that our Creator deserves?
As mere mortals, how do we worship God in all of his glory, splendor, and holiness?
How should we praise God appropriately?
Learning to offer this kind of praise is our life's goal. We journey toward a time when we can worship God fully in his glory, without our human limitations! Until then, let's honor God with our worship while on earth. Let's love God with all of our heart (emotions), soul (spirit), mind (intellect), and strength (bodies) (Mark 12:29-30). With the following words, the apostle Paul called us to such worship to honor God:
And so, dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all he has done for you. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice — the kind he will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship him (Romans 12:1 NLT).
In his message today, Phil digs deeper into our Verse of the Day and encourages us to give our Father the worship he deserves:
Yes, our LORD is majestic, mighty, and wonderful! Let's praise our great and marvelous God with the song, "God of Wonders," with Elijah Oleyade:
Sharing the Supper:
Jesus came to earth as Immanuel, God with us (Matthew 1:23). Jesus the Messiah was the Word of God in human flesh (John 1:1-18). He was God's clearest and most comprehensive message about God himself (Hebrews 1:1-3). As God in a mortal body, Jesus revealed God's glory and grace (John 1:14-18). One day, every creature and all of creation will bow in worship and confess Jesus as LORD to the glory of the Father! Why? Jesus' loving sacrifice on the cross defeated hell's power. His crucifixion and resurrection became our triumph over sin and death (Philippians 2:5-11). Let's remember Jesus with the song, "King of Kings" led by Hillsong Worship, as we prepare to share in the Lord's Supper:
We share in Communion today to honor Jesus as our Savior and Lord. Phil and Donna Ware lead our thoughts as break the bread and share the cup of our Lord thinking about his greatness and grace to us:
Let's continue this praise for our great Lord Jesus who gave himself at Calvary and conquered death for us. We will sing "Great Are You Lord" with All Sons & Daughters:
Foretaste of Glory:
As mortals, we acknowledge our inadequacy to praise God completely as he deserves. Yet, as we journey toward our future with Jesus, we also are traveling toward the time when our faith becomes sight. Our limitations because of language and thought will one day be erased in the glory of the LORD's presence. We will worship God fully as he deserves. On that day, God will be completely real to us as Father and Son and Spirit, because he will have transformed us to be like him (1 John 3:1-3). Let's honor the LORD in anticipation of that day as we sing "How Great Is Our God" with Chris Tomlin:
Yes, one day we will experience glorious praise together with brothers and sisters from every language, tribe, nation and people, as we honor Jesus with these words of praise:
In anticipation of this glorious day, let's join Hallal in singing, "There's a Stirring":
We close this week's ToGather with a prayer adapted from Psalm 19:14 and ask that our worship be pleasing to our LORD:
and the meditation of our hearts
be pleasing to you,
O LORD, our rock and my redeemer. Amen.
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