Valentine’s Day and Worship

Today is Valentine’s Day.  If that is news to you, stop reading, pick up the phone and order flowers sent to your loved one NOW.

 

On this day of considering how deeply I love my wife, I am reminded of the first scripture verse I learned, “God is love.” (1 John 4:8) And the first “scripture song” (remember those?) I remember learning was First John Four Seven and Eight. One of the few songs that included its biblical address in the song lyrics:

 

Beloved, let us love one another

For love is of God,

And everyone that loveth is born of God and knoweth God

He that loveth not, knoweth not God for God is love

Beloved, let us love one another

First John four seven and eight

While you may or may not have dedicated a time in gathered worship Sunday to have all the husbands share a loving gaze at their wives, or vice versa,  the fact is that love is a creation and immeasurable gift from God.  It is Who He is.  “God is love.”  It is important that we as worship leaders (preaching pastors and musicians) reclaim for Christ the truth of love’s roots and foundation. This means placing our love for one another within its context of biblical love – God’s love for His bride, for the world, His creation.

 

As our culture seeks to distract us to thinking that love is something with which we satisfy ourselves, we must stand in the gap to point to the selfless love of Christ.  Such love shows us how to treat our spouses, our families, our brothers and sisters in Christ, and all our neighbors.  It is one more reason why our worship must become larger in scope. Our worship needs less “A,B,C’s” of a good marriage, and more Grand narrative of God’s love story.  We are His creation!

 

I hope you will have opportunity to express your love to your spouse in a special way today, and to do so in a biblical context.  How often does scripture instruct us regarding our love for our spouses in light of Christ’s love for the Church, and vice versa. I pray you will have opportunity to give yourself to your spouse today.

 

Love is good, of course.  It is interesting to me how Christians can recognize that worldly terminology seeks to hijack some God-given acts, such as sexual intimacy.  How often in television shows or movies do we hear about people “making love,” regardless of their relationship. In fact, it almost seems these days, the more perverse, the better.  Our moral antennas go up when they try to mainstream homosexual relationships, and to a sadly lesser degree, when unmarried couples “make love.” We are appalled (while we watch).  How many sermons or articles have we read about these perversions in our society?  I would say many.

 

While we rail against selected cultural evils, are we missing our proclamation of God’s ultimate good?  Do we sometimes diminish the very power of God to triumph over evil?  Cornelius Plantinga Jr. referencing C.S. Lewis states, “Evil wants good; in fact, evil needs good to be evil.  Satan himself is God’s Satan – a creature of God who can be really wicked only because he comes from the shop of a master and is made from his best stuff.” (Cornelius Plantinga Jr, Not the Way It’s Supposed to Be, Eerdmans, 1995)  One of the marvelous privileges of worship leading through music, Word, Table, and sending is to proclaim the triumphant nature of God in Christ!  That triumphant nature includes the kind of hope our world craves: We are God’s creation, We live in a fallen world, God sent His only Son to redeem us, Christ died for our sins, rose again from the dead and is at the right hand of the Father, the Spirit lives in us and gives power to overcome the world, Christ will return to take us with Him to eternal triumph and worship.  Amen!

 

Evil is alive in our world, but doomed. Let’s be certain our worship lifts up Christ and His power over evil.  Read the “end of the story” and sing the song of deliverance!

 

12 “Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to each person according to what they have done. 13 I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End.

14 “Blessed are those who wash their robes, that they may have the right to the tree of life and may go through the gates into the city. 15 Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.

16 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to give you[a] this testimony for the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the bright Morning Star.”

17 The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.

18 I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this scroll: If anyone adds anything to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this scroll. 19 And if anyone takes words away from this scroll of prophecy, God will take away from that person any share in the tree of life and in the Holy City, which are described in this scroll.

20 He who testifies to these things says, “Yes, I am coming soon.”

Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

21 The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen.

Revelation 22:12-20 (NIV)

 

Maranatha!

Paul

 

Explore posts in the same categories: Leading Worship, Private Worship, Singing Worship, Spiritual formation through singing, Worship Reminders, Worship theology, Worship thoughts, Youth Worship

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