If we are true “genuine” worshipers, according to John 4:23, we must bow down our lives so God’s will can be expressed through us. Are you willing to pay the price of a true worshipper?
Luke 9:22 in saying, “The Son of Man must suffer many things and be [deliberately] disapproved and repudiated and rejected on the part of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be put to death and on the third day be raised [again].”
Luke 9:23 continues in saying, “…If any person wills to come after Me, let him deny himself [disown himself, forget, lose sight of himself and his own interests, refuse and give up himself]”
STOP right there! Jesus has presented us a decision to make; coming to Him in worship. Remember Hebrews 13:15 says, we are to constantly and at all times be offering up a sacrifice of worship and praise. Luke gives us points of preparation in paying the price of “true worshipers”.
#1. “Deny oneself; forget your outside interests”, quit giving attention to others around you in church services.
Jesus continues preparing us to worship in verse 23: “…take up his [our] cross daily and follow Me [cleave steadfastly to Me, conform wholly to My example in living and, if need be, dying also.”
#2. Follow Jesus’ example in living, by dying, if needed to “self”.
Romans 12:2 “take up our cross daily and deny self”. “Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the (entire) renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude]…”
#3. Get a new attitude about being a “True Worshiper” in Christ Jesus. How? By the “daily” renewal of your mind.
Leaving ALL your STUFF outside before worshipping!
Luke 5:11, “And after they had run their boats on shore, they left everything and joined Him as His disciples…”
If you are a believer in Jesus and a “True Worshiper“; not a pretending worshiper, you are a follower of Christ; a disciple. You are going to have ‘leave everything that is in your boat on shore and join Him in worship’. The leaving it all behind continues in Luke 5:27-28. The tax collector named Levi, leaves his lifestyle behind, to follow Jesus as His disciple.
The Cost of discipleship in Luke 14:26:
“If anyone comes to Me and does not hate hid [own] father and mother [in the sense of indifference to or relative disregard for them in comparison with his attitude toward God]…” Amplified Version.
“If people come to me and are not ready to abandon their fathers, mothers, wives, children, brothers, and sisters, as well as their own lives, they cannot be my disciples.” God’s WORD translation.
God is telling all of us that if we want to truly be His disciples and be true worshipers of Him, you are going to have to pay the price of separation; not in a corporeal, but in a spiritual way.
Going after it!
Luke 14:27 goes on to say to us that “Whoever does not persevere and carry his own cross and come after (follow) Me cannot be My disciple.”
If you are reading this blog, desiring to be a “True Worshiper” of Jesus and you are willing to pay the price of discipleship this next Sunday, you’re going to have too have, an attitude change; not give up, cave in and quit. If you still don’t feel acceptable to God after your formal worship time, don’t give up. Jesus says you are to “persevere” which means you’re to be “resolute, persist in doing, be stubborn” in “Going after it”; to be a true worshiper in Christ Jesus. Verse 28 tells you to “calculate the costs” to see if your willingness is sufficient to finish what you started.
I was part of a men’s bible study a few years back in my neighborhood. One morning, a study participant asked this question to discuss. “What does it mean to be spiritually mature?” There were several different answers given but I like the answer that was given that brought the discussion back to the Word of God.
Matthew 19:20-21, “The young man said, I have observed all these things [read verses 18-19] from my youth; what do I still lack? Jesus answered him, If you would be perfect [that is, have that spiritual maturity which accompanies self-sacrificing character], go and sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have riches in heaven; and come, be my disciple [side with My party and follow me],”
I like how Kenneth Wuest, Word Studies and the Amplified Version of the Bible defines “being perfect”: “have that spiritual maturity which accompanies self-sacrificing character”. Jesus is saying that your good works, your church title, your college degree in ‘church stuff’ won’t make you perfect for following Christ and in worshipping Him.
What is CHARACTER?
Character is: Doing what is right, not because of what society says is right; what’s right is what God’s Word says is right! It’s not what I feel is right about worship and praise and serving God based on others definitions. Also, when you do right because of what’s right, God’s word says you will prosper; “have riches in heaven”. “You will never rise above your limitations of your character”. If your character doesn’t want to give up anything, then there isn’t a sacrifice in worship; no price is paid.
Releasing your Benjamins
In Genesis 43-45, we see the principle of releasing your Benjamins in discipleship and spiritual maturity. It becomes “sacks full v.s. wagons full“. In todays vernacular it would be “trailers full“. The rich man in Matthew 19, wouldn’t give up his “Benjamin” (verses 23-26).
Who are the “everyone’s” in Matthew 19?
Matthew 19:29 “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or farms for My sake, shall receive many times as much…” NAS version.
The “everyone’s” are you and me. If you are “persevering”, if you are self-sacrificing in character and your desire to worship and serve the risen Saviouris in your spirit, you have planted a seed. Christians today live in “hope deferred”. You will have to plant your best seed to reap the fruit harvest of worship. Now is the time, not next time you enter the sanctuary of your church.
Hebrews 13:15 “Through Him, therefore, let us constantly and at all times offer up to God a sacrifice of praise, which is the fruit of lips that thankfully acknowledge and confess and glorify His Name.”