2 Apr 2015 by Jason Law CM –
On the 21st of March, 2015, the Worship Central Conference was held in Malaysia at the Apha Hub, Bukit Bintang. It was a jam-packed day filled with workshops that provided insights into Spirit-filled worship. And it ended with an amazing worship experience during the night session. Sidney Mohede, Network Pastor and Worship Leader of Jakarta Praise Community Church shared in the session about the power of genuine worship.
‘The churches in Asia have been blessed with so much. I have lived for 20 years in Indonesia and I have seen the change. I compare to 20 years ago and I see what God is doing for this region and it’s incredible. But the point is this; let’s stop waiting for outside help to equip ourselves and let us stretch across Asia. Let us learn to equip each other and rise up for God,’ he opened his sharing.
The Worship Central conferences are prominent, held during the past in countries like Australia, Canada, South Africa, Spain, and the UK. Sidney conveyed that the Worship Central conference that day was the first one held in Asia. This meant that God is still covering and watching over Malaysia. The thrust of his message was on the attitude of a Spirit-led worship.
‘Often we tend to think of Praise and Worship as fast and slow songs. Praise means fast song; Worship means slow song. That’s the way we used to think, right? But worship is so much more than that,’ he inspired. ‘Worship is a call for us to be a living sacrifice (Romans 12), that we are not just singing or holding microphones on stage, but our lives is worship, every single part of it.’
Worship, Sidney communicated, is, according to the dictionary, to attribute worth or value to an object or a person; telling the person how much they’re worth. So, the question is, what is He worth to us? How valuable is our God? Do we really put value into this Person called Jesus or are we doing worship as a routine thing, pretty much just like a session of karaoke?
True worship is powerful. ‘When a person who never knew Jesus or who never walked into a church, when they walk into your church and they see you worship, can they tell if your God is worth it all?’ he challenged. Our posture is important because it is the first thing a pre-believer sees. It speaks to them about the reality of our awe and faith in God. ‘I am not interested in singing songs. I give my all when I worship the Almighty God. I don’t care if I look attractive. I abuse my guitar. I abuse my vocal cords because I want to tell the world that He is worth it.’
Sidney communicated that there are two powers in true worship. The first is the power of understanding. In 1 John 4:22-24, Jesus shared with the Samaritan woman that the people of God worship what they know. And this what He said; that the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshippers. God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.
‘Must. It doesn’t say maybe, or if you feel like it; my Bible says must. Those who worship God must worship Him in spirit and in truth,’ he pointed out. ‘We must worship God in truth, and truth will always be truth, regardless of lack of understanding, disbelief, or ignorance. The world is full of universal truths. Fire burns if we touch it. That’s the truth; there’s no ifs or maybe about it. If we jump from a high floor, we are going to get hurt regardless of whether we believe we can fly.’
When we worship, we are not singing about the Easter Bunny or Santa Claus, Sidney communicated. The challenge is for God’s worshippers to come to an understanding. When we sing to God about His Kingdom come and about King Jesus, do we really understand the words? ‘Do we really understand what a King is and what a Kingdom is about, or are we just singing words? Do we really say it in truth when we proclaim that He is the Lord of our lives?’ he encouraged.
The second power of true worship is in the power of atmosphere. This is shown clearly in 2 Chronicles 20:14 through an episode in King Jehoshaphat’s life. In this passage, Judah was on the verge of destruction, threatened by an alliance of armies. God instructed the king to position worshippers in front of the nation’s soldiers. The next thing, God had miraculously delivered Judah from the threat. Not a single one of Judah’s soldiers needed to fight!
Sidney shared that there’s a difference between a thermostat and a thermometer. Many of us know how to sense the times, but God has called His people to be atmosphere changers. He conveyed that a consistent atmosphere can change the climate. A consistent climate will change the culture. A consistent culture will change the nation.
When Paul and Silas were locked up in prison in Acts 16, they prayed and sang hymns to God while the other prisoners listened. Suddenly, an earthquake came, shook the foundations of the prison. All the doors immediately flew open and the chains of every prisoner fell off! There is power when God’s people worship Him in spirit and in truth.
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