Leading True Worship: Nothing But the Blood


A while ago I was in a big service somewhere one weekend. The established worship leader took to the stage with his big, loud band. And as we sang (or attempted to sing), frequently between lines, the worship leader would shout at us all to "sing it like you mean it", "sing it like you know it", "sing it like you're worshipping", etc., etc. And he'd dispirit us with questions like "Are there any worshippers in the house?" (after we'd been "worshipping" for half an hour). And as he harangued us with such disheartening commands and comments, he led us in singing lots of songs about how we were the ones welcoming God into the place and about the power of God and the miracles He would perform for us today. We skipped straight from God as mighty Creator to God as present-day worker of miracles and blessing without a single mention of the Incarnation or Blood of Christ. Apparently this was Christian worship without the Cross. 

That same weekend worship was very different in a friend's church. Quite a few people were away for the weekend, including the pastor and the usual worship leader. There was no big, loud band or giant crowd. But in the congregation there was a faithful elderly lady suffering from dementia. As the church was worshipping, this lady suddenly cried out, "Thank you Lord for the atoning blood of Jesus!" And then she said it again and again and again. And, as my friend told me, then the whole meeting just lifted. That heartfelt thankfulness for the atoning work of Christ made all the difference. 

So, who led God's people in worship: the established leader with the big professional band screaming commands from the stage, or the little old lady with dementia who pointed the whole church to the blood of Jesus?

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The Unity of the Godhead, and Trinity of the Persons therein.

The utter depravity of human nature, the necessity for repentance and regeneration and the eternal doom of the finally impenitent.

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