God’s View

If we honestly compared the amount of time in church spent thinking about what others think or might think with the amount of time thinking about what God is thinking, we would probably be shocked. Those of us in congregational leadership need to think deeply about this.

Often the “eyeservice” [Ephes. 6:6] that occurs in present-day church services comes in the form of trying to “move” people. “Wasn’t that a great service?” we often say. But what do we mean? Are we really thinking about how God felt about the service?  What is the correlation between God’s view of a great service and the human view? We need to be very careful about this, or the rule, “Truly, they have their reward,” may apply to us.

—Dallas Willard, The Divine Conspiracy: Rediscovering our Hidden Life in God, 202

Worship as Disruption

Worship nevertheless imprints on our whole being the reality that we study. The effect is a radical disruption of the powers of evil in us and around us. Often an enduring and substantial change is brought about.

—Dallas Willard, Daily Devotional, Day 4: “Worship” in Renewing the Christian Mind: Essays, Interviews, and Talks

Constantly Return

In worship we strive for adequate expression of God’s greatness. But only for a moment, if ever, do we achieve what seems like adequacy. We cannot do justice to God or his Son or his kingdom or his goodness to us. So we must constantly return to worship.

—Dallas Willard, Daily Devotional, Day 4: “Worship” in Renewing the Christian Mind: Essays, Interviews, and Talks

All That Is within Me

In worship we are ascribing greatness, goodness, and glory to God. It is typical of worship that we put every possible aspect of our being into it, all of our sensuous, conceptual, active, and creative capacities. We embellish, elaborate, and magnify. Poetry and song, color and texture, food and incense, dance and procession are all used to exalt God. And sometimes it is in the quiet absorption of thought, the electric passion of encounter, or total surrender of the will.

—Dallas Willard, Daily Devotional, Day 4: “Worship” in Renewing the Christian Mind: Essays, Interviews, and Talks

No Theology without Doxology! (6)

 

But worship must be added to study to complete the renewal of our mind through a willing absorption in the radiant person who is worthy of all praise. Study without worship is also dangerous, and the people of Jesus constantly suffer from its effects, especially in academic settings. To handle the things of God without worship is always to falsify them.

—Dallas Willard, The Divine Conspiracy, 362-63