Dr. John Piper defines true worship as an inner Godward experience of the heart. He reminds us that unless worship originates in the heart it is not genuine. It’s as Jesus said, “God is spirit, so those who worship Him must worship in spirit and in truth.” Dr. Piper says in view of this, “The pursuit of joy in God is our highest duty. Worship becomes radically God-centered. [It] is not a means to some other end, but an end itself. All of life is an expression of worship.” The absence of sincerity is why God chastised careless priests for offering vile gifts in pretense of worship. We read this in Malachi chapter 1: “‘You say, ‘It’s too hard to serve the Lord,’ and you turn up your noses at my commands,’ says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. ‘Think of it! Animals that are stolen and crippled and sick are being presented as offerings! Should I accept from you such offerings as these?’ asks the Lord.” What a terrible pretense of worship! But just as two lovers find joy in each other’s presence, so a true worshiper of God seeks pleasure in His presence. In true worship we offer ourselves totally to God through Jesus the Christ.
Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr. is the founder and chairman of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.). Under his direction, UMI has grown to be a leading publisher of Christian education resources for churches in the African American community. Read More