Many People Play Church

In various surveys, when people are asked why they don’t go to church, they often reply that church is just too boring. Vance Havner used to say, “Church often starts at 11 o’clock sharp and ends at 12 o’clock dull. (Source Unknown). … More


This psalm begins with singing as it calls us to joyful worship because all glory belongs to the Lord (vv. 1-6). It continues with an emphasis of giving (vv. 7-9). This includes the giving of glory, wealth and worship. Then it ends with the fact that all governments belong to Him (vv. 10-13). Many people are just playing church. “Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away” (II Tim. 3:5). While I recognize that sometimes a church service can seem dull, but I would like to suggest that true worship is anything but boring. This chapter states:

  1. Who should be worshiped? The Lord God. He is mentioned by name or by pronoun in every stanza of this psalm except 11-12.
  2. What is worship? One hundred seventy times in the Bible we find the phrase “fall on your face or bow down” which refers to worship. (Example 95:6)
  3. How should we worship? With music (v. 1); with proclamation (v. 2); by giving Him glory (v. 8); by coming into his places of worship (v. 8); by living holy lives (v. 9); and by witnessing for Him (v. 10).
  4. Why should we worship? Because the Lord has saved us (v. 2); because of His greatness and fearsomeness (v. 4); because of his creation (v. 5); because of His honor, majesty, and strength (v. 6); and because the Lord is righteous, true, and coming to judge (v. 13).
  5. Where are we to worship? We are to worship the Lord among the nations (v. 3); in His sanctuary (v. 6); and in His courts (v. 8).
  6. When are we to worship? We are to sing and proclaim His salvation day after day (v. 2).

Today, it seems that absolute claims are often viewed with suspicion. At best they express naive confidence and at worst they are power grabs. In the end, our God is not simply our God but he is the Lord God of all who trust His Son Jesus as their personal Saviour. One interesting sidelight of this psalm is that it contains the center verse of the Bible. It calls for this planet to lift its voice in joyful song. This is what God plans in the crowning day to come.


If I truly understand what being a believer is all about it will be impossible to be bored. If I spend time sharing what God is teaching me I will be fired up as a partner in His kingdom work.

Psalms 96:1-13 (English Standard Version)

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