Subtitle Difference

Bob Kauflin, in his latest blog post answering a question about worship leading and entering the presence of God, he makes note of a subtitle but significant difference:

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So as I’m standing in front of the church, leading them in songs, Scripture reading, and prayer, my goal is not to “lead them into God’s presence,” but to help them remember and celebrate what Christ has accomplished for them through his righteous life, atoning death, and glorious resurrection. As they place their faith and trust in the perfect high priest, they will most likely experience a fresh awareness of God’s nearness. Their position in Christ hasn’t changed. Their appreciation of it has. The church will be built up and God will be glorified. Understanding this area really brings freedom to me as a worship leader. I don’t have to try to pull off an impossible task. I don’t have to be anxious about whether or not people will “make it.” I simply have to present what Christ has done in a clear and compelling way to encourage people’s faith. The Holy Spirit takes care of the rest.

Read Bob’s entire article here.I wonder if our worship leaders today convey the correct message when leading. I’ve often heard experienced worship leaders say, “We’re going to start this morning with some worship”, as if worship has a start and stop time to it… or “We’re now entering the presence of God”, as if we weren’t already in His presence or as if He wasn’t already dwelling in us… or “Feel free to worship freely, clap / dance / lift your hands, whatever you feel comfortable with”, as if worshipping God is supposed to make us feel comfortable in what we are doing.This one subtitle difference about reminding worshippers that we are continually in His presence and able to freely enter into the Holy of Holies because of Christ’s finished work on the Cross is very significant to our understanding of where we stand in relation to God (positional sanctification). From what I gather, it seems very possible that we could find ourselves in the wrong place even as we stand to worship God on Sunday mornings — thinking the worship leaders must be lead us into God’s presence every Sunday morning, or else we will be lost in the sea of aimless worshippers.All those who lead congregations from the stage — the worship team, lead worshippers, chairperson, and preacher, etc — must be clear and accurate in what we say and do when gathering God’s elect in times of corporate worship. The picture of the LORD, our Lord, that is painted must be biblically sound and theologically accurate. This is where the head-knowledge of theology meets the nitty-gritty personal and corporate doxology (worship): the interaction and relationship between the two is unmistakebly complex yet important. We must be careful not to distort people’s understanding of God nor their understanding of themselves by casually saying the wrong things, even if there was no intention to do so whatsoever.

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