Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Fear of the Lord
Imagine if a congregation gathered to minister unto the Lord rather than to "get" from Him. Teaching and fellowship would take a back seat to waiting upon the Father's initiative. Songs of adoration and thanksgiving rather than performances. Extended periods of silence and expectation in corporate prayer. More straight reading from the sacred text and less teaching from it.
Perhaps initially it would lack the flow and momentum of our eighty minute program packages. But I suspect that with a focus upon the Lord's arrival, the "holy hush" would lead to messages, praise, prophecy and manifestation around the room. There would be a quickening adjustment from the traditional lecturn-audience format.
The ministry team would have to be prepared to step back and allow something more participatory to occur. The atmosphere would be one of excitement moderated by courtesy and a respectful weighing of input. Services would contain surprises, comforts, reminders, admonitions and encouragements through the Spirit. Pastor would take on the role of conductor in the concert rather than soloist.
The command is for us to assemble and bow down and worship. It is not to attend sessions on self-improvement or the exploration of virtues. As we focus on the glorious account of what Jesus has done and what He is like, we find ourselves being changed into His likeness. We crave His "bread".
We appropriate Him and find that progressively He lives through us. The outflow will be in love, service and reproduction.
I encourage readers of this post to take some private time with concordance and topical Bible in hand to examine "fear of the Lord" and such passages as Isaiah 58, Psalm 36, Psalm 63, Acts 4 and Acts 10.