On Worship

by: J N Darby

The habits of a vast number of Christians, and the moral atmosphere in which they are placed, have tended to produce very vague notions as to worship. Having turned away from formalism and superstitious views, which left the care of their religion to others, and feeling the need in which they stood of the truth, they have found in the recognition of the truth—in hearing and owning it—the sum total of their ordinary religious exercises. But surely this is not all that should be included in our religion while here below. In heaven, doubtless, the truth will be known in all its perfectness. Truth, now received into the heart, will be actually realized there in the presence of the glory of God, and of the Saviour, about whom the truth treats. There will be no longer any need of hearing the truth—we shall live in it, and the power of it in our hearts will be expressed in adoration. Such is the characteristic of heaven. And, undoubtedly, this should be realized in some measure while on earth, by those who have received the truth, and who by it enjoy the knowledge of God who has communicated it, and of the Saviour who came to accomplish his work of love and of righteousness on our behalf; it should be realized by those who have received, not only the truth, but the very Spirit who gave the truth its place in their hearts, and who gives them the desire of glorifying Him whom it has revealed. When the Holy Spirit communicates heavenly truth to the renewed heart, it always re-ascends in thanksgiving and praise. True worship is but the grateful and joyful response of the heart to God, when filled with the deep sense of the blessings which have been communicated from on high. The Holy Spirit causes the feelings produced by the revelation of God—of His glory—of His love in Jesus, and of all the blessings with which He loadeth us, to re-ascend to God in adoration. And, surely, the heart which is penetrated with the grace of God, will find delight in rendering back to Him the homage of its adoration and gratitude for all these blessings, which are so many proofs of the infinite and eternal love which He has for us.

Let us, then, examine this subject according to the scriptural light which the Spirit has given us.

What, then, is worship?