Why are we here? What is the purpose of this life? The Bible explains that we aren’t just a random collect of molecules thrown together by chance, but that we were created in the image of a holy God. It also teaches that our primary purpose, our reason for being, is to give glory to God. Glorifying God means to acknowledge his greatness and give him honor by worship, because he, and he alone, deserves to be praised, honored and worshipped.
Psalm 86, says:
There is none like you among the gods, O Lord, nor are there any works like yours. All the nations you have made shall come and worship before you, O Lord, and shall glorify your name. For you are great and do wondrous things; you alone are God. Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth; unite my heart to fear your name. I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify your name forever.
1 Chronicles 16:28-29 describes how we are to give glory to God:
Ascribe to the Lord, O families of the peoples, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength! Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; bring an offering and come before him! Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness;
Giving glory to God is an act of worship. In these verses, we see that the act of glorifying God has two parts: First, we are to “ascribe,” or give glory to him because is deserves it. Secondly, we are to “bring and offering” to glorify him as part of our worship. This offering involves our agreement, obedience and submission to him. Glorifying God means agreeing with everything he has said, both about himself and us in the Bible. Because he is holy, and perfect, his word is holy and perfect and we glorify God by listening to, agreeing with, and living in submission to his will as revealed in the Bible.
Worship should cause us to reflect on the majesty and graciousness of Jesus Christ, in contrast to our own unworthiness. Our preaching, praying, singing, reading and communion are designed by God to bring us closer to him and to cause us to think more like he thinks, and to become more like him. James 4:8 tells us to, “Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.”
Originally published in the Mariposa Gazette on August 22, 2013.