(Taken from work on my current doctoral dissertation)
Our first part of Concerns for Un-Biblical Worship centered around the improper perception or perspective of who God is. The second part focuses on the object of our worship no longer being directed toward the God of the Bible but rather on man.
1 Peter 4:11 cautions us that “If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things, God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen.”
Concerning the exegesis of 1 Peter 4:11, the context is in regards to preaching. This is an aspect of the ministry that cannot take away from the attention given toward God. Preaching, spoken by man, must give glory to God through Christ Jesus. The word “oracle” here is logion. “This word refers to God’s written revelation. The ministry of preaching must be confined within the bounds of God’s inspired Scriptures. And this should be done according to the power, ischuos, which God supplies. The supreme aim in preaching is to glorify God through Jesus Christ. When Christ is proclaimed in His power and glory, then God is glorified.”
Many preachers approach the pulpit lacking a sense of reverence and humility, but instead, as if the gift and calling bestowed upon them was of their own volition, preach with the subtext of God, but implicitly (or at times explicitly) claim the power as their own. It becomes a stage to introduce and showcase the wonderful talents, skills, knowledge, and intelligence, masked by the intent of preaching the Word of God for the purpose of the congregation’s edification, when in fact, the preaching is done to excite, motivate, inspire, and direct the emotional appeal of the lay person toward the one preaching, yet done, “all in the name of God.” When the preaching is given so that the attention is directed toward a fallen person, in need of a Savior, as opposed to the God who saves him, it is no longer Biblical.
How often do we come across preachers who bask in the glory they receive from their congregation members after preaching? Unfortunately, there are those who step off of the pulpit looking forward to the admiration given to them by their respective laity. It is what fuels them, inspires, motivates, and encourages them to continue “preaching” to others, as opposed to the sincere desire to bring glory to God by preaching His Word and edifying God’s children.
(Picture taken from http://thumbs.dreamstime.com/thumblarge_314/1222459336H79UV3.jpg)
 Isidro Annotated New Testament, p.454
Concerns for Un-Biblical Worship
(Excerpt taken from the current work on my doctoral dissertation)
The practice and programming of Biblical worship will be addressed in later chapters. The definition of “un-Biblical” worship stated here is the approach or reason for worship that has been evidenced and manifested throughout churches in this world. It is un-Biblical because the worship is no longer centered on God the Father, but has now been directed to many other targets.
- Personal Subjective Opinion of God
This is one of the more subtle deceptions when one considers the act of worship. The key to understanding Biblical worship is to whom is our worship directed to. Many, if not all acts of Christian worship, claim to direct their worship toward God. But the question that remains to be answered is “What perception of God is being worshipped?” All the major religions of the world claim to worship the one true God and various ecumenical positions hold that the God of Islam, Judaism, and Christianity are the same God. If this holds true, does this mean that the program of worship implemented by Muslims is Biblical? Does this same principle apply to Judaism?
God the Father, Yahweh, Jehovah, is a specific personality. The details of His personality and character are revealed through His Word. The God of the Bible is the God that is worthy of our worship. Any other perception of God is unacceptable. It must be the God of Scriptures, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
If a person claims to be worshipping God, but does not have the correct Biblical understanding of who God is, but rather holds a post-modernistic, personal, and subjective view of their own God, masquerading and perpetrating as the God of the Scriptures, then the worship of this said “god” is un-Biblical.
The simple truth remains. For worship to be characterized as Biblical, the object of that worship must be God as the Bible reveals Him, not as our own personal opinions hold him to be.
Unfortunately, there are many individuals and churches who claim to be sincerely and genuinely worshipping God, but their interpretation and understanding of who God is, is skewed because they have not properly studied and interpreted the Biblical passages that reveal God’s personality.
The simple truth is how can one truly and Biblically worship God if they do not know who He is? One cannot ascribe worship to one’s own personal idea of God and claim it to be Biblical.