Worship - Then Serve Christ

Then Jesus said to him, "Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.' "

- Matthew 4:10, emphasis added

Worship is the most vital and life-changing topic of the whole Bible. When Jesus was alone in the wilderness (except for the devil's presence), He stated His extremely important mandate for serving God. In Matthew 4:10, Jesus gave this order: "Away with you, Satan!" (10a). Then He quoted a verse from His memory arsenal of the Word of God: " ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve' " (Matthew 4:10b, emphasis added).

Did you fully grasp what is supposed to come before service? Worship! This is God's order. All service for Him is to flow out of worship. No worship-no service. As a child, if I did not wash my hands, I did not get to eat. But when I got a little older, my credo became this: "No Bible, no breakfast; no Bible, no bed." The Lord's rule is this: "No worship, no service."

Does ministry ever get dull, tedious, and wearying? If so, that is a warning sign that the oil of worship is running low. Worship must always come before service. When the worship wanes, service becomes a drag because the Holy Spirit does not energize it.

We start worshiping God at the moment of our salvation for we are the true circumcision (Philippians 3:3). In this verse, the apostle Paul is talking about the Judaizers who were not followers of Christ. He described them in Philippians 3:2: Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the mutilation! These are the people who believed in an external form of salvation, or "salvation by surgery." They believed that if you are circumcised, you are going to heaven. This is the same as believing that if you are baptized or join the church or "walk an aisle" that you will go to heaven.

Baptism, joining a church, or "walking an aisle" are all external things. But God is after an internal heart belief. Therefore, He says that the only people who will go to heaven are those who worship in the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh (Philippians 3:2-3).

Do not count on what you have done, but on what Christ has accomplished. If you are born again, you are One who has been transformed from the inside out. God transforms us to be genuine worshipers when we are saved. We can then worship in the Spirit of God, and glory in Christ Jesus, because of no longer having confidence in our own flesh.

Do you see why worship must come before service? Much service can be done in the power of the flesh, but only the Holy Spirit energizes true worship. Worshiping God is the most marvelous, encouraging, strengthening, and uplifting thing we can do!

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