I have been reading through a book with the two student praise bands at my church called The Ultimate Priority by John MacArthur. We have not read very much and we have been reading for five weeks now I believe. It has been excellent talking about what we are reading about worship. We are intentionally not blazing through this book for the purpose of soaking in all that we can to the greatest depth that we can. Something from the book that I have been chewing on over and over again is the fact that I can be TOTALLY sincere in my lifestyle of worship and still be wrong.
There are many examples of this truth today in our world. Cults, fads, trends, false religion, apostates, and even modern “christianity” sometimes. But look at an example from the Bible…
2 Samuel 6:1-7
I used to think how strict God was in killing Uzzah when he touched the ark. I knew that God said no one was to touch it, but I always thought, “But, Uzzah was just trying to keep the ark from falling on the ground!” Herein lies the problem, Uzzah had allowed the ark to be carried in a way that was contrary to God’s design. God commanded that the ark be carried with poles so that no one would touch it. Here, Uzzah was allowing a new cart to carry the ark. This whole scenario would not have happened if it had been done the right way in the first place. Uzzah was sincere. But Uzzah was WRONG.
John MacArthur says, “God will not accept deviant worship. Some would insist that any kind of sincere worship is acceptable to God, but that is not true. The Bible clearly teaches that those who offer self-styled worship are unacceptable to God, regardless of their good intentions (emphasis added). No matter how pure our motivation may seem or how sincere we are in our attempts, if we fail to worship God according to His revelation, He cannot bless us.”
My desire is sincerity, but I want to be sincere and right. If my worship is sincere, but self-styled, it is wrong. I want my worship to be sincere and Biblically-styled. Doesn’t it make sense to worship God according to the standard He has given us? If we think about it, we have it pretty easy, just do what the Bible says! I know, that may not always be easy, but the moment we become deviant from the truth, even in all sincerity, we will STILL BE IN SIN. I want to worship God the way He has prescribed, the way He has commanded.
“Sincere…and still wrong?”
“Yes, but you can be sincere and be right. Just follow God’s Word!”