This devotional is the second in a series I have entitled, “What Believers Ought to be Doing Today.” By heeding its message, you will see and feel more of God’s power in your life.
Love in Christ Jesus, Pastor Mark
“Oh come, let us worship and bow down; Let us kneel before the LORD our Maker. For He is our God, and we are the people of His pasture, and the sheep of His hand.” Psalms 95:6-7 NKJV
Some of you are familiar with my testimony of how God instantly healed me at the altar of a church when I was 10 years old. The visiting evangelist who preached that week was called “the walking Bible” because he could literally quote multiple chapters of the Holy Bible in their entirety by memory!
One evening, at the close of his preaching, he said, “Anyone who needs a touch from the Lord, please come down to this altar now.” I hesitantly got up from my seat and went down to the altar. “The walking Bible” appeared to be amazingly tall as I stood before him. He asked, “What would you have the Lord to do for you?” I answered, “I am always congested and have a hard time breathing, especially at night.” He put his hand to the right side of my head and simply said, “In the Name of Jesus.” When he said this, the electric power of the Holy Ghost hit me. I felt it come down through my head, then down my throat, then finally hitting the bottom of my stomach like a brick. INSTANTLY, every bit of congestion in my head and bronchial tube disappeared, and for the first time in what seemed like years, I could breathe “as clear as a bell,” as the saying goes.
Just a few weeks ago, I had the privilege of speaking with a dear old saint whom for decades had served the church in which this happened. (I am confident that she was present that night because it would have taken a disaster to keep her from being there. She is one of those faithful disciples of Jesus Christ who is in church every time the doors are open!) As we sat and reminisced about old times, I asked her, “What has changed since those days? Why do we not feel the power of God in church services like we used to?” This was her answer: “Mark, back in those days, before we would go home, we spent so much time on our knees at that altar. Is it any wonder that God did so many things down at that old altar, since we spent so much time crying out to Him there?”
“Oh come, let us worship and bow down; Let us kneel before the LORD our Maker.” (Psalm 95:6); “Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded…Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up” (James 4:7-1).
She had the correct answer: In those days, at the end of virtually every worship service, God’s people made a practice of bowing down before the LORD their Maker at His holy altar. It was there that they would draw near to Him, and it was there that He would draw near to them.
Many today who could bow their knees refuse to do so, owing to fear of embarrassment, bondage to former church tradition, stubborn rebellion (pride), or just plain laziness. Others, due to physical impairments, are not able to do so. In that case, the Holy Bible offers an alternative which should not preclude the bowing of the knees by those who are physically able:
“Behold, bless the LORD, All you servants of the LORD…Lift up your hands in the sanctuary, And bless the LORD.” (Psalms 134:1-2)
Does physical posture have anything to do with effective worship? The Holy Bible indicates “Yes.”
People who are willing to humbly submit to the LORD are enjoined to “kneel before the LORD our Maker” (Psalm 95:6). And people who are willing to “bless the LORD,” (as opposed to only wanting to be on the receiving end of blessings), are instructed to “lift up your hands in the sanctuary and bless the LORD” (Psalm 134:2).
Initially, it was not the peoples’ fault that the power of God began to disappear in what had become dead, dried-up churches. It was the increasingly sophisticated pastors and church elders who were at fault. But now, all of God’s people, (including you, dear reader!) have the ability to correct the consequences of such spiritual malpractice.
Therefore, BELIEVERS TODAY OUGHT TO BE BOWING THEIR KNEES AND LIFTING THEIR HANDS REGULARLY IN WORSHIP. When we obey these Biblical instructions for worship which have been lost in the modern Church, we will be drawing near to Him, and we will see and feel a lot more of His drawing near to us!