Sunday, September 14, 2014

Who ya gonna worship?

I have to admit that I have a problem in worshipping Jesus.  

There.  I've said it.  And let me say it again. I have a problem in worshipping Jesus.

Now, many of my Christian friends may find this statement odd, since I have been involved in church since I was a child.  And I have a few friends who are what I'd call "Pentecostal", in that their form of worship service is heavy on praise songs and prayer, which does have a tendency to rely heavily upon repeated use of the name of Jesus, with the repeated phrases "Praise you, Jesus", or "Praise Jesus", or "We love you, Jesus".  As I have expressed before, I do not feel comfortable in that worship environment, so you'll forgive me if I find those kind of services simple and too emotional.  Now, I am not saying that they are wrong or of no value: in fact, I will argue that they DO have value, in that they often bring the "unchurched" to an understanding of Jesus and the gift of Grace He provides by our acceptance of that gift.

But the point of my first line is to say that I find that the worship of Jesus to be, well, a bit misguided. You see, in my reading of the Gospels, Jesus often refers to himself via metaphor as a means to get to God.  For example, John 4:6, ".....No one comes to the Father except through me."  Again in John, 10:9, "I am the gate (some translations say 'door'); whoever enters through me will be saved." To me, clearly, Jesus saw that He was (and is) the intercessor, the door or gate in which we can find salvation.  Jesus is the path to God.  He preached and taught about God, and God's love.  That God "sent down his only son, so that anyone who believes in him, will be saved."

You see? Now, how can I put this, using metaphor?  OK.  When you buy a house, you work with a realtor.  They get you into the property, and then into escrow.  But once you're in the house, you don't still work with the realtor. You don't call them to ask them about the plumbing, or how to run the washing machine, or what color to paint the kid's bedroom.  The realtor's work is done (OK, some realtors are smart and realize that many clients of theirs become return clients).  But in this analogy, once you use the realtor's services, you are done.  And in a sense, Jesus - the manifested Son of God, part of the Triune God - is your entry, the gate, the door, to get TO God.  And once IN there, we then are free to worship God. God is to be worshipped, in my point of view.  Not Jesus.  Granted, if you do follow the mystery of the Trinity, God is Jesus, Jesus is God, yada-yada, so you might find my argument to be one of semantics.  And perhaps it is.  

But truthfully, I just feel that we are to worship God.  Jesus is to be praised in that he's the Son of God, and in that it is through his sacrifice that we are able - at all - to truly worship God.  Perhaps it really makes no difference at all.

Soli Deo Gloria

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