Colossians 3:16 Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.
Make sure you read this if you cannot sleep at night!!
Three weeks ago, the passage on John 4:23 came to my mind during the church service. I've forgotten where the verse came from. They next day, as I was doing my devotion, I read this passage again. I was wondering what God is trying to speak to me.
In the midst of pondering the passage, another passage came to my mind, Colossians 3:16. Gosh, so I keep on pondering the relation with these two verses.
As I study the verse, Col. 3:16 I began to see some light. It is so true that, if you keep on meditating or reflecting on certain verses, it will speaks to you. That is the power of God's Word. In Col. 3:16, "The Word of Christ" is the subject. The main verb is "to dwell" (imperative/command). The Word of Christ must dwell in us richly. When the Word dwells in us richly, the next three verbs are the consequences: to teach and to admonish, and to sing (all three are in participle form). [I know is a bit academic here, but to be faithful to the Word of God, we do need to go back to the original text to have a better insight]
Recently, I've encountered a lot of "debates" or "insights" of what worship is? I believe these two verses have spoken to me. Our worship, our preaching, our giving, our daily life and etc is the consequences of the Word of Christ that dwelt in us. We can't just worship the Lord just because of our feeling as Christian that God loves us, therefore we worship him. But we must let the Word of God dwell in us, and with conviction, from inside out we worship our God. Not only in worship, but also in preaching. How can we preach unless the Word of God dwell in us and has convicted. To dwell in us, it is not just having understood the passage, but from inside-out, in practice, we are able to show what has been dwelt in us (1John 4:16b, 20 - God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him; if someone says, "I love God," and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen).
What then shall I say? (wow! Like St. Paul arguing certain issue, :D) Am I saying that the Word of God is the most important? Yes! Last Friday, there was a person was arguing that in a service, everything is important. She said, we cannot say the Word is more important than worship, and worship is more important than any other "items" in a service. I think she got it wrong! In a service, all that we are doing are the consequences of the Word that has been dwelt in us. I believe that everything that we do in a service must be Christ centered, and the CLIMAX of the service is the Word of God (the reading and preaching) because that is where the word is proclaimed to us (the Reading) and where through the preacher, we believe that God is using him to reveal the Word to us so that it speaks to us in our current context which in the end lead us to Christ who is our stronghold, and in Him we shall not be afraid (Psalm 27:1b).
Conclusion? Our worship, preaching (or even sharing in a devotion), is the effects of the indwelling of the Word in us. By then, true worshipers that have understood the dwelt Word and practice it will worship the Father in spirit and in truth. Therefore, we need the Holy Spirit, our Helper, the Spirit of truth (John 15:26) who will remind us what Jesus had taught us (John 14:16) to worship God our Father. Worship not just as in singing praise and worship, but also in prayer, preaching and our daily lives.
Our action: Read your Bible and pray everyday so that God's word will dwell in you richly!