The word "intentional" seems to be the "buzz" word among the church lately. Therefore we should know what it really means. It is doing something that is deliberate, calculated, conscious, intended, planned, meant, studied, knowing, willful, purposeful, premeditated, preplanned, and preconceived.
I can only imagine: Can we wrap our minds around true worship that was intentional? In worship I am not speaking about music of any kind, because that is praise. I am speaking about bowing the head, the body, getting on one's knees, or laying down flat before the Lord. Intentional means that It was already deep seeded in the heart to do this, and not being caught up in the moment of the crowd and moved into something by emotion.
God is always interested in the heart of man, especially the intentional heart. In the Old and New Testaments the men came from all over the land to the temple three times a year. Many would walk a hundred miles to get to the temple in Jerusalem.
Imagine what they told their sons along the way about God and the privilege to come to the temple and give into the kingdom for all God’s rich blessings. Imagine, if we had a year, a month, a week, to think about and prepare our heart for intentional worship to God our Father. Oops, sorry, we do. We need to intentionally do it. Worship: A physical position of bowing the head, the body, the knees or laying flat on the floor before the Creator of heavens and earth. Worship is a mandate robbed from the church because we renamed it to mean a music team, a musical song, or the music time. These are all acts of praise, and does not relieve us of our responsibility of worshipping in Spirit and truth.
Fellowshipping and Worshiping together has always been a part of the Christian faith. After the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, the disciples and new believers met together every day in the temple courts.
Acts 2:46 KJV And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,
Following the Lord's commands to meet together and wait was why they were together on the day of Pentecost, when they received the Holy Spirit UPON them. (Acts 2) Paul provided details instructions for holding orderly corporate worship services in 1 Corinthians 14:26-40.
The Bible instructs Christians to continue fellowshipping and worshiping together. While there is a time and place for worshiping and praying in solitude (Luke 6:12), the Bible also instructs us to worship together as a community. In Hebrews 10:25, the Bible says, "Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing."
With this I must say that as believers "We Do Not GO To Church."
As believers, "We ARE the church going somewhere for corporate fellowship and training."
The fellowship, worship and training time does not have to be a "Church" building, it can be in a home or a room in a town business. AND....The fellowship, worship, training time DOES NOT have to be on a Sunday. I know, old mindsets are hard to break.
When I was living in Germany I met many American's who claimed to be believers but did not fellowship together in a corporate setting. They said that they were "RESTING" from "church life" but still had their private devotions. I actually had guys tell me they were on a 3 year vacation from church and God. Can we expect God to bless and accept the sacrifice of a good discipline (like private fellowship and worship) when we neglect to offer obedience in another discipline (like public corporate fellowship and worship)?
Then there are those believers who are so scholarly, so holy, so knowledgeable, so far above all other believers and Pastors in the town that they can't find a church to attend that they can agree with. If they could record their statements when they are speaking these great, glorious words of piety and replay them back, maybe they can hear the pride and pharisaical self-righteousness that the rest of us hear. These folks need to go ahead and realize they don't have it all together and their main issue is the spirit of pride and rebellion that keeps them from submitting to pastoral authority.
As a Pastor for over 42 years I have learn one disturbing truth. Christians will do what is right in their own eyes and have a justification for it that sounds righteous to them. Find a place of corporate fellowship and worship and honor the Lord.
The key: Find a group that are true believers and are hungry for the things of God, no matter where they meet. Make sure they place the Word of God has the highest source of authority. Make sure that someone in the group is called to be a spiritual leader and has been equipped by God to lead, instruct in righteousness. (To many Bible studies both in the homes and in the churches are nothing more than shared ignorance or denominational creeds). Make sure that in the group our Lord Jesus Christ is being lifted up and not a person, personality, or belief system..
Psalm 139:23-24 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:  And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
In these past 15 lessons on worship I pray that we have seen that it is God’s heart that we worship in Spirit and in truth. He is concerned in how we worship, what we bring as an offering when we worship, where we worship, why we worship, and who we worship.
We have seen in the past 15 lessons that worship is not just an emotion or just a religious activity and it is not music. The terms "worship time," "worship teams," and "worship songs," are not Biblical and have served as a distraction in that these religious activities have robbed the Father of true worship.
As we studied before and we will see again throughout the Scriptures that worship means to BOW THE HEAD, THE BODY, or to LAY BEFORE THE LORD on the ground. It is physical posture of the body representing a spiritual position of the heart. Worship is not about music, a song, or a band. All of this we will explore later.
Worship is connecting with the Father and walking in deep relationship and fellowship each day, and enjoying that fellowship time no matter what is happening around us. We saw that true worship happens when we...(1). Deal with sin correctly, (2). Bring the acceptable offering to the Lord, and when (3). Complete obedience is observed no matter how great the personal cost.
We also learned that true worship comes forth from a heart of gratefulness and thanksgiving. In studying the lives of Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, Noah, and Abraham and Isaac we saw that true worship was taking place BEFORE the Tabernacle was even built by Moses.
Therefore, worship did not need a building or structure to happen. When our Lord Jesus Christ met the woman at the well, she asked the question about where one should worship. The “where” that God is seeking is not necessarily a physical place as it is a “heart place.”
John 4:20-24 Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship.  Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father.  Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.  But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him.  God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.
The traits of true worship:
I will add descriptive meaning in parenthesis to certain words within this verse.
Romans 12:1 ESV I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present (a decisive dedication) your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy (that which is devoted and consecrated) and acceptable (that which is well pleasing) to God, which is your spiritual worship.
In offering “true worship” to the Father we have studied three requirements so far in the first 13 lessons.
1. With Adam and Eve we saw that “true worship” requires us to deal with sin correctly.
2. With Cain and Abel we saw that “true worship” requires that we worship God’s way because not all that we offer may be acceptable to the Father.
3. With Noah, Abraham and Isaac we saw that “true worship requires total obedience.
The fourth truth of “true worship” is that it comes forth from a grateful heart. In other words, worship is a logical, natural and spiritual response when we understand what the Father has done for us.
We see in Genesis the list of references to those who built altars to worship the Lord, or those who bowed the head, the knees, or the body before the Lord as an act of worship. These all came from a grateful heart for the great things done by the Father. I have listed some of these references for your own personal study later on.
Those who bowed the head, knees, or body in worship, or those who built an altar.
Gen.8:19:20; 12:7-8; 13:3-4; 13:14-18; 18:1-3; 19:1; 22:4-5; 22:8-9; 24:23-27; 24:48; 24:51-52; 26:24-25; 33:18-20; 35:1-7
A thankful heart is a strong motivator to worship. We don’t have to look very far to find things to be thankful for. If we have dealt with sin correctly, if we have worshipped God’s way and not our way, and if we walk in obedience in word, deed and thought, then out of a thankful heart “true worship” will flow. By the way, true worship has nothing to do with music. Music is an act of praise, among 20 other forms of praising God. The terms worship team, worship time, and worship songs are religious terms brought about to replace what true worship is. There is not one verse in the Bible where music is tied to worship other than when we rightly praise God it should lead us to worship. Don't we question as to how our Lord Jesus Christ worshipped so much. yet without having a music team following Him around? More on this later.
Genesis 22:1-2 ESV After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” (2) He said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.”
What is Abraham to do in obedience to God in Gen.22:1-18? It was a 45 mile walk to Mt. Moriah, which is about a 3 days journey. The name of Moriah has many meanings. Knowing that God told Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac on the Mount, it would be good to look at some of the meanings.
Mount Moriah means,
“Jah” (a name for God),
What a word! Abraham has been called to walk in total obedience and holiness.
Abraham is seen as an intercessor and a prophet. After waiting for 20 years he has become the Father of the “child of promise.” He now has his own son, someone of great worth, who God is going to use to test Abraham's spiritual character. The statement “Thine only son” was the only one born of Sarah, and heir of the promise. The statement “Whom thou lovest,” shows how a child captures the affections of a parent’s heart.
Abraham must have felt the outward struggle between God's command to sacrifice his son, and God's promise that in Isaac the world would be blessed. Many times we might miss the will and plans of the Father because in our mind they don't make sense and it would seem that one thing would cancel out the other.
In faith Abraham believed that God was able to raise him up, even from the dead. When the moment came Isaac made no resistance to his father’s will. The binding with the rope was a sacrificial custom and really was not needed to restrain Isaac. Isaac believed that his father Abraham was obeying the will of God.
This request would be hard for any father, but remember that Isaac was not just another son; he was the “son of promise.” When Abraham laid Isaac on the altar he was sacrificing all that God had promised. He was giving up his vision, his dream, and his future. Abraham laid his whole life and all his life dreams on the altar with his son. True Worship cost something. Genesis 22:5 is the first Bible reference to the word "Worship." One day we will learn that worship has nothing to do with music, but to bow the head, the body, the knees, or to lay before the Father in humility and fear. Not one verse in the Bible about worship is tied to music, a song or a team of musicians. This might be hard, but seek the Word and not your emotions for truth. Remember, true worship is done in Spirit and truth.
PLACES WHERE GOD AND MAN MEET (PT. 01)
And the Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.
And they heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day: and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden.
What comes to mind when you think of worshipping God? Where do you meet with God? Where do you worship Him?
These are questions that have been debated for hundreds of years. Every culture has had a place or places set apart to worship God. It is important to remember however that it is God who takes the initiative in providing a way for man to meet with Him and to worship with Him. God throughout history has also taken the initiative in bringing man to the “right place” to worship Him. God placed Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden for a place and time of worship. He met with them in the cool of the morning. There was no building, no music, and no structure; just God meeting with man for worship.
Adam and Eve’s relationship with God was pure and unhindered. All that Adam did reflected the life and heart of worship. They were…
(1) Sensitive to the voice of God,
(2) Submissive to the will of God, and
(3) Obedient to the Word of God.
BTW, That is a good sermon outline for you preachers.
WORSHIP: The most misunderstood and misused word in the Bible.
Explained in a minute-with a Biblical challenge.
So far we have covered:
Defining the Fear of the Lord (See Parts 1-2)
Reward #1 is "Riches, Honor, and Life" (See Part 3)
Reward #2 is "Turning from evil" (See Part 4)
Reward #3 is "Wisdom and Knowledge" (See Part 5)
Reward #4 is "A Prolonged life & A Fountain of life" (See Part 6)
Reward #5 is " A place of Contentment" (See Part 7)
Reward #6 is "True Healing and Refreshment to the Body" (See Part 8)
Now back to "WORSHIP."
Reward #7 is True Biblical Worship
Just as an quick statement and a challenge for you to use the Word of God and not "what you believe" or "how you feel" to prove my next statement right or wrong.
The first time the word worship was used in the Bible was when Abraham was about to ascend the mountain to sacrifice Isaac.
Genesis 22:5 ESV Then Abraham said to his young men, “Stay here with the donkey; I and the boy will go over there and worship and come again to you.”
The Hebrew word is shâchâh (shaw-khaw') and is used 171 times in the O.T. It means to depress, to prostrate, to bow in homage to royalty or God, to bow down, crouch, fall down flat, and to do reverence.
Now to touch all those religious spirits:
There is NOT ONE VERSE were worship is used denoting music or having anything to do with music. There are over 20 words for praise. To sing, to dance, to clap, to leap, to shout, to herald, to run, to spin violently, to play an instrument, etc. is all tied to PRAISE.
But worship, is to do something physically that is tied to the heart spiritually. It is to bend, to bow, to kneel, or to lay before the Lord.
The reason we don't mind calling the team a worship team with worship songs for our worship time is because we don't understand Biblical worship, nor do we understand the Biblically, the fear of God.
The challenge: Use your word studies, your concordances, and your Bible and prove me wrong. But please don't respond with, "well, I feel", or "well, I believe." We are staying with the Word of God only.
By the way, the Greek words for worship mean the same... to bend, to bow, to kneel, or to lay before the Lord.
Psalms 5:7 ESV But I, through the abundance of your steadfast love, will enter your house. I will bow down toward your holy temple in the fear of you.
Charles Morris. Founder and Senior Pastor of RSIM USA.