The Testimony of Israel

“Which is where the tribes go up—the tribes of Israel—

as the testimony of Israel;

to give praise to the name of Yahweh!”

(Psalm 122:4)

Have you ever thought of your church attendance being part of your testimony?  I am not simply referring to a testimony of praise to God, but a testimony before the nations that God is living and active in your life.  It is easy for us to nod some level of agreement to this statement, for the fact that we choose to attend church rather than do other things on Sunday is a constant reminder to unbelievers of our faith, but let us take it one step further…how about the demeanor or attitude that you take about going to church with your non-Christian acquaintances?  Do you make it seem like you would rather be out goofing off with them, but you have to be in church?  Do you fall over yourself apologizing for not being able to do the things that the others are doing?  What message does such a stance send regarding the desires of your heart for the Sabbath day?

Loved ones, what a contrast the Biblical model presents to our more modern practice!  Our joyful attendance upon the Lord’s worship is to be our testimony.  We are not to grumble, but we are to shout to the world that Christ is alive and that he is the only source of salvation for mankind!  We are to proclaim that there is only one name by which mankind can know salvation and that he has given us the great privilege of knowing him in that way.  Beloved, we have been given a wonderful and awesome gift, why be silent about it?  Why grumble and mutter about obligation?  Our worship is the place wherein which we gather with those of the redeemed to enter into the greatest wonder and joy that life can ever bless us with—the presence of Jesus Christ our Lord!  What a wonderful opportunity to testify to the nations by testifying to our neighbors that one can find life and life abundantly in Jesus Christ the Lord!

My prayer for you this day is that you see your worship as part of your testimony and that you become intentional about how you come into the gathering of the faithful.  Do you come in with a shout of joy or do you come in with a groan and a whimper?  How you come in communicates a world of truth about your heart’s state.  Loved ones, do not fall into the traps that the world sets for us—never apologize for your faith, but boldly proclaim that Jesus Christ is Lord and that you look forward to the day wherein God’s people gather to make a public testimony of the greatness of our God.

The splendor of the king, clothed in majesty,

Let all the earth rejoice; all the earth rejoice.

He wraps himself in light, and darkness tries to hide,

And trembles at his voice, and trembles at his voice!

How great is our God!

Sing with me—

How great is our God!

And all the world will see,

How great, how great is our God!

-Chris Tomlin

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