By Not Known
Nagash, Qarab, Halak are three Hebrew worship words which means to approach, to draw near, and to come. Just as God calls us to come worship Him, He also draws near to us. But how can we approach a holy God? Psalm 95 is a three-movement psalm calling us to worship.
Come and rejoice. Oswald Chambers said “A joyful spirit is the nature of God in my blood.” In vv1-2, the psalmist says, “let us…” four times. Although worship can be private, here worship is described as a community event. The psalmist describes that the worship of the redeemed as vibrant and energetic (“Let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation”). Worship is a time of joyful celebrations for what God has done and what He is doing in our lives. Furthermore, worship must be God-centred. We are to “sing for joy to the Lord,” we are to “shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation,” we are to “come before Him with thanksgiving,” and we are to “extol Him with music and song.” Lastly, our God is the great God and King above all kings who is worthy of our worship. The “depth,” “height,” “sea” and “dry land” emphasises the totality of His creation within His control (vv3-5).
Come and give reverence (vv6-7a). As the worshipper realises God’s sufficiency as his Shepherd, Redeemer and Saviour, he falls on his face before God in reverence. We are the people of His pasture, the flock under His care. In describing what worship is, A. W. Tozer said “Worship is to feel in your heart and express in some appropriate manner a humbling but delightful sense of admiring awe and astonished wonder and overpowering love in the presence of that most ancient Mystery, that Majesty which philosophers call the First Cause, but which we call Our Father Which Art in Heaven.”
Come and respond (vv7b-11). The psalm closes with a final call and an invitation to respond. Christian worship is our affirmative, transforming response to the self-revelation of God (Donald Hustad). According to God, to not respond is equivalent to hardening one’s heart as in the story of the Israelites complaint in Massah and Meribah (Exo 15-17). While it’s not wrong to ask God for help, it’s a sin to complain and gripe as our grumbling proves our lack of trust in God. The word “as” indicates that it’s a Massah-like attitude which God despises. More than just coming together to worship, God wants us to listen to His voice and live out His Word.
So as we worship Him today, come and rejoice, come and revere, come and respond. Let us worship God.