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What Does Worship Mean In The Bible

A Few Useful Quotes That Expand On What Worship Is


True worship is a valuing or a treasuring of God above all things. John Piper

We worship one God in the Trinity and the Trinity in unity, without either confusing the persons or dividing the substance but the Godhead of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit is one, their glory equal, their majesty coeternal. Athanasian Creed

The highest form of worship is the worship of unselfish Christian service. The greatest form of praise is the sound of consecrated feet seeking out the lost and helpless. Billy Graham

For me, prayer is a surge of the heart it is a simple look turned toward heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy. St. Therese of Lisieux

Gospel music to me has always been a balm for the soul. It has been able to usher in the spirit, usher in worship, true worship and praise, healing. I find the music to be very good at healing and the passion, you know, which is a testimony being told in song. Kim Fields

Worship is the activity of the new life of a believer in which, recognizing the fullness of the Godhead as it is revealed in the person of Jesus Christ and His mighty redemptive acts, he seeks by the power of the Holy Spirit to render to the living God the glory, honor, and submission, which are His due. Robert Rayburn

Worship is our missionto become the best possible worshippers we can ever be. If we fail to become worshippers on earth, we are never going to be happy in Heaven!

What Is True Worship According To The Bible

Worshiping both in Spirit and Truth

The hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him. God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.

John 4:23-24

In John 4:23-24, Jesus spoke about worship with the Samaritan woman. Lets try to understand what true worship is according to the Bible, and how you can apply it to your own relationship with God:

Exceptions To The Kjv Uses Of Worship:

Luke 14:10 – The KJV follows the old Geneva Bible in translating the Greek word “doxa” as “worship” in the context of being raised to an honored seat – the only place where the KJV translates the word as “worship.” Over 90% of the other 150 instances of “doxa” are translated as “glory” in the KJV, and the rest are translated as “honor,””praise,” or “dignity.” No modern translation uses the word “worship” in this verse.

Jeremiah 44:19 uses a Hebrew word with a literal meaning of “to carve” and a figurative meaning of “to eat away at” or “grieve.” In this verse, however, the KJV and ASV translate this word as “worship.” I think this is not a consistent translation of the word because in the other 16 instances of this word in the Bible, it does not have the positive connotation of worship: 14 times the KJV translates it “grieve/ displease/ vex/ hurt/ be sorry” and twice, it is translated with its literal meaning of carving as “wrest” and “make.” Modern translations do not translate Jer 44:19 with the word “worship” but rather with the literal meaning of shaping a likeness, and I think this is the best way to translate it.

Col 2:18 – “worship/religion of angels,” Col 2:23 – “will-worship” . Translated “religion” everywhere else, referring to Judaism as well as to Christianity. Has to do with the external ceremonies and disciplines of a religion.

1See “Exceptions“at the end of this paper for an evaluation of the other 5%

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Examples Of Worship In A Sentence

worshippedworshipworshipworshipWorshipworshipworshipBGRworshipThe Christian Science Monitorworship San Diego Union-Tribuneworship CNNworship WSJworship New York Timesworship CNNworship National Reviewworship courant.comworship alworship Los Angeles Timesworship chicagotribune.comworship San Diego Union-Tribuneworship sun-sentinel.comworshiporegonliveworship The Conversation

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word ‘worship.’ Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

How Is Worship Defined In The Bible

What does the Bible say about worship?

The most common words translated worship in the Bible mean to lay ones self before God.

In the New Testament, the most common word translated worship in the original Greek is proskuneó . According to Thayers Greek Lexicon, the definition of worship is:

What is the word worship in Hebrew, in the Old Testament? The most common word translated worship is shachah. According to A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament , worship means to bow down, prostrate oneself, before a monarch or superior, in homage, etc.

Both of the primary words in Hebrew and Greek for worship in the Bible mean the same thing: to bow down or lay ones face to the ground. Its an acknowledgment of Gods glory. There is someone who is transcendent and glorious and He is worthy of our full allegiance and devotion!

The word worship in English means to acknowledge and ascribe worth to someone or something. The Biblical words describe the actual act of worship, that of kneeling, bowing, or lying prostrate on the ground. The English translation describes the reason we would do what the Bible says.

Psalm 95:6 describes the act of Biblical worship with two synonyms.

Oh come, let us worship and bow down let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker!

Psalm 95:6

So worship is to bow down or lay our face before God. This physical act is worship when it reflects the hearts posture to follow the King.

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The Word Worship In Hebrew

There are three different words used for worship in the Old Testament. Im going to go over each one with you.

cagad- to prostrate oneself. The word prostrate has these following definitions found in the 1828 Noah Webster Dictionary:

1. Lying at length, or with the body extended on the ground or other surface.

2. Lying at mercy, as a supplicant.

3. Lying in the posture of humility of adoration.

atsab- to fabricate or fashion.

shachah- to prostate in homage . This term is commonly used to describe bowing in worship or respect to the Almighty God.

Understanding Worship Definitions From The Bible

As stated at the beginning of this article, a formal definition of worship is not given in the Bible. However, we can gain an understanding of what worship is by studying the various descriptions of worship and how it is talked about by the many men and women of God contained in the scriptures.


Genesis 4 narrates the first act of worship of God by Cain and Abel. In verses 3 and 4, we read about both the brothers bringing offerings to the Lord. This idea of worship is found throughout the Old Testament.

For example, after God asks Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac, when they reach the mountain, Abraham commands his servants, Stay here with the donkey while I and the boy go over there. We will worship and then we will come back to you. . Again, worship here means offering a sacrifice to the Lord.

The sacrificial offering was therefore the predominant understanding of worshipping God in the Old Testament.


  • Sing to him, sing praise to him tell of all his wonderful acts.
  • I will sing of your love and justice to you, Lord, I will sing praise.
Lifting hands
  • Lift up your hands in the sanctuary and praise the Lord.
  • May my prayer be set before you like incense may the lifting up of my hands be like the evening sacrifice.

Then the man bowed down and worshiped the Lord



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The Reason We Worship

The reason we worship? Because He alone is worthy. Who or what else is more worthy than the deity who created all heaven and earth? He holds time in His hand and sovereign watch over all of creation. Revelation 4:11 tells us that, You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for You created all things, and by Your will they were created and have their being.

The prophets of the Old Testament also proclaimed the worthiness of God to those who followed Him. After being given a child in her barrenness, Hannah in 1 Samuel 2:2, declared to the Lord through her prayer of thanksgiving, There is no one holy like the Lord there is no one besides You there is no Rock like our God.

Worship Of The Beast In Revelation 1: 9

What does worship mean to you?

So we see, worship is simple yet so varied. Therefore, what can we deduce about worship of the beast in the verse below from what we just read?

Revelation 14:9-10And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand,

Worship simply means adoration. The beast is the Christian religion led by the Pope. It is however not limited to the Christian religion, as the religion of Islam also contains the mark chi xi stigma. Both are the two leading religions in the world.

If any man partakes of those religions, he worships the beast.

They honor the beast, exalt the beast, they have faith in the religion, they believe the religion can help them, they defend the religion as being true. So to summarize it all from the verses we showed in the New Testament?

Simply calling oneself a Christian or Islam is worshiping the beast!

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The Call To Worship With Our Entire Being

Biblical worship involves our whole being: spirit, soul, and body . Biblical Worship is not just a cerebral pursuit, an emotional exaggeration, or a mystical consciousness. Worship is a presentation of our entire being, ignited by the Holy Spirit, as a living sacrifice to God.

I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

Rom 12:1-2

Worship involves our bodies. 1 Cor. 6:19-20 reminds us: Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

With our bodies, which are created in Gods image, we can express our worship to God. There are many words in the Bible that show physical expressions of worship. Biblical expressions of worship can include keeling , bowing heads , raising heads , lifting up hands , and dancing before the Lord . True Biblical worship will confront our fleshly pride.

We can see these examples in the life of Jesus. He spoke praise , lifted His hands , lifted His head , and kneeled .

Worship Before The Time Of Moses

If we survey the Bible, we will see a wide variety of methods that Gods people have used to worship him and express their devotion to him. Some of these methods were done by specific command from God others seem to have been the choice of the persons involved. We see this pattern throughout the Bible: some things are commanded and some things are optional.

We dont have to read the Bible very far before we encounter a story about worship. Genesis 4 tells us that Cain and Abel brought an offering to the Lord. We arent told why we are just told that they did it. A few chapters later, we read that Noah built an altar after the Flood, and he sacrificed some animals.

Later, Abraham made sacrifices. He built an altar at Shechem, another at Bethel, then at Hebron, and at Mount Moriah. As part of his worship, Abraham also prayed, circumcised and tithed. Isaac built an altar at Beersheba and he prayed. Jacob set up a stone pillar at Bethel and poured a drink offering on it, and he poured oil on it as some sort of worship. He built an altar at Shechem, and one at Bethel. He vowed to tithe and he prayed. What conclusions can we draw from this?

One thing was important probably the greatest commandment about worship, the most important rule about worship no matter who we are or when we live. The first and greatest commandment is this: You shall worship no other gods.

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Meaning And Various Versions Of Worship In Spirit And Truth

ESV: God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.

KJV: God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

MSG: God is sheer being itselfSpirit. Those who worship him must do it out of their very being, their spirits, their true selves, in adoration.

HCSB: God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.

There is remarkable continuity among Bible translations with two exceptions: Spirit vs. spiritanda Spirit vs.Spirit.Pneumacould mean Holy Spirit or an intention of the heart, so John might be saying worship with truthful intention or worship by the power of the Holy Spirit.

As for the indefinite article used by translators of the King James Bible, this could refer to the different ways the Spirit of God expresses Himself.

Ultimately, the Christian worships Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit, equipped by that Spirit to know the truth, and will also demonstrate a spirit or intention of truthfulness.

Truthing equipped by the Holy Spirit reflects the Fruit of the Spirit, exemplified in the ability to expose sin while also relieving a person of its weight by way of the gospel.

Scriptures Related To Worshipping In Spirit And Truth

What is Worshipping God in Spirit and Truth?

If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever the Spirit of truth.

Listen for echoes of John 4:24 in the verse above. It wont ultimately matter where the Jews or the Samaritans worship: neither place will be better since Christs Spirit abides in every believer. Worship will be appropriate and expected all the time, everywhere. He made Himself accessible to all who would believe. What Christ gives by His Spirit is secure in the believer.

If the Samaritan woman repents of sin and believes in the resurrected Christ for salvation, no one can take her security from her. Hebrews 12:28 says Let us be grateful for receiving a Kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe.

The Kingdom is coming, but we are the church and our temple cannot be shaken. Christ came to free every believer from the trap of religious self-righteousness which sought to put strangleholds on worship.

The Spirit is wind and cannot be contained. Truth is a verb, something one does, and Jesus demonstrates truthing by taking His message of salvation on the road. Truth is also certainty according to the Hebrew definition.

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What Exactly Is Worship

Worship can be defined as the reverence or adoration that one shows toward something or someone holding a person or object in high esteem or giving a person or an object a place of importance or honor. There are hundreds of scriptures in the Bible that speak about worship and provide guidance as to both who and how to worship.

It is a Biblical mandate that we worship God and Him alone. It is an act that is designed not only to bring honor to Him who deserves honor, but also to bring a spirit of obedience and submission to the worshippers.

But why do we worship, what exactly is worship and how do we worship on a day-to-day basis? Because this topic is important to God and is the reason that we were created, the Scripture provides us a great deal of information on the subject.

What Is Worship Look To Heaven

The book of Revelation gives us a view of worship in heaven. Perhaps this is our best example of worship. As you read their worshipful response, make it your own act of praise.

Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say: You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being. Revelation 4:9-11

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Worship Definition And Meaninga Christian Perspective

Worship definition is surprisingly not an easy topic to get around no matter which denomination a Christian is from. There are myriad definitions and explanations, some of which even contradict each other and sometimes lead to confusion, unedifying debates and arguments.

The root cause of this challenge of understanding worship may well stem from two reasons:

  • The Bible only describes worship and doesnt explicitly define what it is
  • The word Worship is both noun and verb
  • In this post, lets attempt to understand various worship definitions by referring the Bible and other material.


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