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Scripture Memory: Character Moulding.
VERSE : Proverbs 27:17 
"Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend."

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O Worship the LORD in the Beauty of Holiness

1 September 2013
8 am & 1045 am Worship Service:
Rev Charles Seet (Cultivating Brotherly Kindness, 2 Pet 1:7; Rom 12:10; 1 Pet 1:22; 1 Thes 4:9)
6:00 pm Evening Service:
Rev Ho Chee Lai (Jehovah Mekeddeshem: The LORD who Sanctifies; Lev 20:8)

8 September 2013
8 am & 1045 am Worship Service:
Rev Quek Keng Khwang (Cultivating Love; 2 Pet 1:7, Eph 3:17, 1 Jn 2:15-17, Mt 22:37,38)
6:00 pm Evening Service:
Dn Lee Hock Chin (Jehovah Hoseenu: The LORD our Maker; Ps 95:6)

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HOW SHOULD WE WORSHIP GOD?

Church growth experts believe that the main reason why churches are not growing is that there is nothing in their worship that attracts people. They say that one must create a lively atmosphere that will make people want to come back for more and bring all their friends along.

The Real Objective of Worship

What is Christian worship supposed to achieve? Doesn’t it have to do with the God whom we worship? Isn’t worship meant to bring the greatest pleasure and glory to Him rather than to the worshippers?

Our worship must first and foremost be acceptable to God. Hebrews 12:28 says – "Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear." The word ‘serve’ in this verse means worship. Since it is qualified by the word ‘acceptably,’ not all worship is acceptable to God.

If you are assigned to host a dinner for a very important dignitary flying in from overseas would you choose the cuisine that you enjoy eating most? No. You would probably find out what food he enjoys most and what he cannot eat or is allergic to. The same thing applies to worship: Our manner of worship should be acceptable to God. We should offer only what is most pleasing to Him, and not offer what is pleasing to ourselves. What kind worship then is acceptable and pleasing to God?

The latter part of the verse leaves us without any doubt about the kind of worship that is acceptable to God – it has to be filled with the attitude of reverence and godly fear. If we lack this attitude in our worship, then God will not accept it.

The Worship That God Accepts

Our attitude in worship ought to be like that of Isaiah and of the angels that he saw in the vision that he described in the 6th chapter of his book. This shows us more precisely what reverence and godly fear are all about.

A Response to His Sovereignty

The first thing that Isaiah mentions is that God is "sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up." This teaches us that He is the absolute sovereign over all things. His throne speaks to us of His supreme authority to rule over us. There He rightfully sits, as "the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords" (1 Timothy 6:15). The God we worship exercises complete authority over the entire world. What response should this bring from us?

If you are a student, imagine what it is like to be called to the Principal’s office. If you are a soldier, think of how you would conduct yourself before the Commanding Officer of your unit. If you were to receive an invitation from the President to have dinner with him, would you dress casually? The point is that if we take care of the manner in which we appear before human authority, how much more should be careful of the way we come before God!

A Response to His Holiness

In the next verse Isaiah describes the seraphims that hovered around the throne of God. Now the word "seraphim" literally means "burning ones" and it implies that they were very bright creatures. Each of them had six wings which served two different functions – to fly with, as well as to keep their own faces and feet covered. Why did they need to cover themselves? Even though they were bright creatures they needed to shield themselves from the greater brightness of the One who sits on the throne.

Since God’s angels display a godly fear in their worship, how much more should we be fearful to stand before God, being much lesser creatures than they! The brightness of God in this vision speaks to us of His perfect holiness (cf. 1 John 1:5-6). This is reinforced by the words which the seraphims cried out to one another in v.3 – "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts…"

The God we worship is the thrice-holy God whose light shines infinitely brighter than all the angels heaven can boast! We come before Him every Sunday after spending a week in an unclean world of sin. For six days we have been soaking in the moral and spiritual filth from a sinful and worldly environment, and we are thereby defiled with unholiness in our thinking and in our being (as Isaiah confessed in v.5 – "I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips"). And now we presume to come before a Holy God who is absolute purity. What attitude should this produce in us, but godly fear and reverence?

A Response to His Glory

In the last part of v.3 the seraphims said, "…the whole earth is full of His glory." So overpowering was this glory that the huge doorposts of the temple shook at the mere mention of it, and the temple itself was instantly filled with smoke!

God never shares His glory with anything or anyone else (Isaiah 42:8). To claim any glory for oneself is to rob God of His glory. Thus it is impossible to worship God acceptably when one is filled with pride. True worship leaves no room at all for pride or self-glory in our hearts. It must produce humility in us.

From v.5 onward, we observe how Isaiah responded to God in this vision. He was no mere spectator but a participant. What he saw and learned evoked a deep-seated response from within him. It is only when we have a similar response to God that we can say that we have truly worshipped Him.

This grand vision of God made Isaiah realise how sinful he really was: "Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips." Isaiah was probably more righteous than any of us. But even when the saintliest person in this world stands before God, he will give the same response: "Woe is me, for I am undone!" No one can sincerely worship God without realizing how unworthy he really is and how hopeless his plight would be if it were not for God’s mercy and grace.

A Response to His Goodness

An attitude of godly fear and reverence in worship will be met with God’s revelation of His own goodness. This is what Isaiah experienced in vv.6,7. God immediately sent one of the seraphims to cleanse him with a burning coal from the altar. How grateful Isaiah must have been to be cleansed so mercifully from all his sins and iniquity! This led him to yield himself to God most willingly.

A Response of Giving to God

Worship is not about what we can get from God. It is all about what we ought to give to God. Isaiah carried out an act of acceptable worship when he said: "Here am I, send me." (v.8) His reverential fear of God made him give himself completely to God.

If you come for worship because you are looking forward to get something you want from God then your purpose is wrong. Worship is all about giving – giving to God what is rightfully His by virtue of His awesome glory, majesty and holiness. It is about giving to Him of our time, our attention, our thoughts, our meditations, our wills, and our whole-hearted praise.

The reason why we seek to maintain a solemn atmosphere of reverence and godly fear in our worship services is that it is most conducive for giving unto the Lord. The more our souls are able to grasp the awesome sovereignty of God, the holiness of God and the glory of God, the more we are drawn to give of ourselves most willingly to Him. And we would then put our heart into all that we do in the worship service.

Worship from Our Hearts

Come early to spend time to prepare ourselves for worship, to ‘tune out’ all worldly and selfish thoughts from your mind and to ‘tune in’ to God’s frequency. Doing this will enable you to have the attentive and expectant attitude that you need for sincere worship. Be appropriately dressed – not in shorts and T-shirt, but in attire that matches the sanctity of worship and that will not draw any attention to yourself.

And when the service begins, remember that you are there as a participant and not as a spectator. Do not let your thoughts wander away, but engage your mind fully in what goes on and give a spontaneous personal response to it from your heart. Since this requires full alertness please ensure that you have a good night’s rest before Sunday.

To maintain full attention, no one should be talking, eating, or texting during worship. That is why coming late for worship is not a good habit: It distracts worshippers to see people walking in, trying to find an empty seat. We must be punctual!

Little children are most welcome to join the worship service as Jesus said, "Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not." (Mark 10:14) But parents should ensure that they sit quietly and not distract anyone from the worship.

Maintaining the sanctity of worship is every worshipper’s responsibility. It helps all of us to focus our thoughts fully and entirely upon God. It enables us to worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness (Psalm 29:2) and to give ourselves fully unto Him. Nothing must be allowed to shift our focus away from Him.

Our ultimate aim is to glorify God by responding to Him acceptably, reverently and with godly fear, and with all our hearts, soul, mind and strength, because God is worthy of nothing less than that.

— Pastor

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GOSPEL SUNDAY

Date: 29th September 2013

Time: 10:45 am

Topic: How Precious is Your Soul?

Speakers:
Rev Tan Soon Yong (English Service)

Rev Tang Chee Keong (Mandarin/Hokkien)

Members are encouraged to invite their friends and relatives.

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1) Migrant Workers Outreach: Please meet in Church at 6.00pm in Rm 1-5 for prayer before setting off to Soon Lee Road Recreation Center at 6.30 pm.

2) Biblical Tour Greece & Turkey 6-18 Dec 2013. Limited seats available. Final booking date: 8 September. For details, contact Dn Lee Hock Chin (9456 2516) or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

3) Scripture Memory Verse Review No. 4. The deadline for submitting the review is 8 Sep 13. Review No. 1 to 3 are also available for those who missed them. Obtainable at the front counter.

4) Infant Baptism on Anniversary Sunday, 20 Oct 13. Parents who intend to have their infants baptisedmust register by today. Please call the Church Office (6594 9399) or email Yin Chan giving child’s name, date of birth and parents’ names and contact.

5) Congratulations to Desmond and Li Chin Low on the birth of a baby girl on 25 Aug 13.

Preaching appointment: Rev Quek at Thai Service, 2.30 pm.

Vision & Mission

 

To build a united church family that is committed to making disciples through Salvation, Sanctification and Service, to the glory of God.

Verse for the Week

October 15 & 22 - The Cost of Discipleship

For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. Matthew 16:25