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Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Spiritual Lift of Worship Songs

A while ago a Facebook friend, Mark, from back in my hometown school days, sent me a message to listen to a song, Revelation Song, performed by Jesus Culture. When I heard it I recognized it from worship times in my church. The song was written by a songwriter, Jennie Lee Riddle. (Click on her name to learn more about her). Listening to the song made me reflect over the importance and power of music to lift up the inner spirit not just in church but throughout the day. I listen to a wide variety of music, yet when it comes to spiritual songs of praise songs and hymns they enliven my inner being is a uniquely different way.

In thinking of worship songs I looked on the internet and read several articles that mention how music is an important component in many religions in the way they worship. That makes sense as music has in its very nature the ability to tap into our emotions which is an important facet of our being. Music can be found in the worship of a variety of faiths such as Hinduism, Christianity, Judaism, and Atheism to name some of the major religions. I will not speak to religions such as Hinduism or Buddhism, as I am not Hindu or Buddhist. I am a Christian whose journey in my faith walk has been enhanced through songs of worship.

In this post I want to focus in on the song Mark suggested to me. If you click on the song title as usual a video of the song performed by Jesus Culture, a worship band, will play.

Revelation Song by Jennie Lee Riddle

Worthy is the, Lamb who was slain Holy, Holy, is He
Sing a new song, to him who sits on Heaven's mercy seat
Holy, Holy, Holy Is the Lord God Almighty
Who was, and is, and is to come With all creation I sing
Praise to the King of Kings You are my everything
And I will adore You
Clothed in rainbows, of living color Flashes of lightning, rolls of thunder
Blessing and honor, strength and glory and power be to You the only wise King
Holy, Holy, Holy Is the Lord God Almighty Who was, and is, and is to come
With all creation I sing Praise to the King of Kings
You are my everything And I will adore You

Filled with wonder, awestruck wonder At the mention of your name
Jesus your name is power Breath, and living water Such a marvelous mystery
Yeah... Holy, Holy, Holy Is the Lord God Almighty Who was, and is, and is to come, yeah
With all creation I sing Praise to the King of Kings You are my everything
And I will adore You

When I hear this song it reminds me of the visual picture of the worship of Jesus the Lamb found in Revelation 5:11-13:

11Then I looked, and I heard the voice of many angels around the throne and the living creatures and the elders; and the number of them was myriads of myriads, and thousands of thousands, 12 saying with a loud voice, "Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing." 13And every created thing which is in heaven and on the earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all things in them, I heard saying, "To Him who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb, be blessing and honor and glory and dominion forever and ever.

In my Christian worldview that I hold onto, Jesus is the perfect sacrifice to bring fallen mankind back into right relationship with God. He alone is worthy of my worship for being the holy perfect Lamb of God. The verses point to a myriad of worshippers in heaven worshipping Jesus on the throne. As I watched the video of Jesus Culture in a worship gathering in Chicago; that showed a small foretaste of the worship being viewed by the Apostle John in the Book of the Revelation. The song mentions about creation singing. In the revelation text we see “every created thing” mentioned in worshiping Christ. Reading that made me think over to a text by the Apostle Paul Romans 8: 18-20

18For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us. 19For the anxious longing of the creation waits eagerly for the revealing of the sons of God. 20For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it, in hope…

Here we see creation is a pointer to God. Enjoying the beauty of creation is a joy as people enjoy flowers, sunsets, lakes, canyons, and many other wonders in nature. When I see creation I feel with Paul that creation is pointing beyond itself to the Creator God behind the creation. I can appreciate the atheist who feels the cosmic magic rabbit just popped into existence by random chance. I just do not have that level of blind faith in chaotic random chance. I look at the complexity and beautiful delicate nature of a flower and see God the Creator behind it. My response is then as the Revelation Song goes “Filled with wonder, awestruck wonder”. That is spirit behind my worship in view of the pure holiness of the great God behind all things. The song states, “You are my everything”. If my worldview is based on the God of glory and maker of all, my only response should be that He is my everything. God should then be the driving force in my love and concern for helping my fellow travelers on this journey in this life. I am glad Mark pointed this song out to me so I could think through the importance of a life of worship that is a major part of my personal worldview.

Reflection: What is your thoughts about the lyrics of the worship song , Revelation Song? If you are of another belief system what do you think of the music that is a part of your Faith? What is your favorite Spiritual song and why is it important to you?

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