Right, why do we worship? It’s not about singing hymns with the gusto of a football chant, nor about reciting verses like lines in a play. Worship is a heart-to-heart with the divine, a time when we connect with something greater. But here’s where it gets knotty – should we direct this deep-felt worship to Jesus? Some might swiftly say no, but hold your horses; let’s have a proper chinwag about it.
Consider your heroes. You might have a footballer who can bend it like Beckham, or a singer who can croon just like Sinatra. We respect them, appreciate them, maybe even pin their posters on the wall, but worship them? Not a chance. So, what about Jesus, the humble Nazarene carpenter? Is he merely someone to admire, or should we extend our admiration into worship? Stay tuned, we’re about to explore some intriguing ideas.
Remember that gripping scene in the New Testament, Matthew 28:9, “Suddenly Jesus met them. ‘Greetings,’ he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshipped him.” This isn’t just any Jesus; it’s the resurrected Jesus. The disciples, awestruck, fall at his feet and worship. Does Jesus tell them off, say, “Oi, mates, that’s not how you do it!”? Not at all, he allows their worship.
Now, let’s think about this. If Jesus were merely a prophet, wouldn’t this be an issue? The Ten Commandments are clear: “You shall have no other gods before me” (Exodus 20:3). So, if Jesus is not God himself, wouldn’t his acceptance of worship be a contradiction? It’d be like putting the kettle on for a cuppa but pouring orange squash instead. That just wouldn’t do, would it?
But Jesus does accept worship, so what can we deduce from this? He isn’t claiming to be a separate god, but he is representing the divine in a way no other human ever could. He’s acting in full alignment with God’s will, a perfect reflection of God’s love and grace. Jesus once said in John 14:9, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father.” He wasn’t claiming to be God, but was showing us God’s character in a way we humans could understand.
So, here we are, gathering the pieces of this divine puzzle. Jesus accepting worship, Jesus embodying God’s character – it’s all hinting towards something, isn’t it?
However, to play fair, let’s consider another angle. Some may argue that worship is solely reserved for God the Father, that Jesus is distinct, the medium, not the message. I hear them. But wouldn’t it be reasonable, if Jesus is such a perfect reflection of God, that worship given to Jesus is like worship given to God?
Take the time I bought my first flat. Cramped, creaky, but mine. If you praised the well-kept fireplace or the lovely bay windows, wouldn’t I take it as a compliment to the whole place?
In a similar vein, worshipping Jesus is like appreciating the most beautiful, unique window into God’s character. It’s not separating God into parts, but rather, recognising God’s fullness as displayed through Jesus.
So, let’s circle back to the burning question: should we worship Jesus? Given the evidence, it seems sensible: Yes, we should. When we worship Jesus, we’re acknowledging and honouring the perfect embodiment of God’s will, character, and love.
So, my friend, as you bow your head in prayer next time, remember: Jesus isn’t merely someone to respect. He’s someone through whom we see God clearer, someone to admire, to follow, to emulate. He’s not just the Nazarene carpenter; he’s the greatest reflection of God we have. So, what do you reckon? Are you onboard with this idea?