The Gospel and Worship

“Still a long way off? The Father sees you and, filled with compassion, He runs to you, throws His arms around you, and kisses you.”

This is my favorite description of the Gospel.

Sure it’s missing some details, but in the hearer’s ears, it’s the most beautiful thing ever.

My daily scripture reading took me through Matthew 26. Verse seven says, “a woman came to him with an alabaster jar of very expensive perfume, which she poured on his head as he was reclining at the table.”

Like many of us, upon seeing an expression of extravagant worship, the disciples didn’t get it. It ticked them off.

She didn’t care. Neither did Jesus.

But by verse thirteen, He makes this startling declaration: “wherever this gospel is preached throughout the world, what she has done will also be told, in memory of her.”

I began to ask why this story of extravagant worship would be told any time the Gospel is shared.

I believe the response to the Gospel is always extravagant worship.

It’s like the Four Spiritual Laws:

  1. God loves you and offers a wonderful plan for your life.
  2. Man is sinful and separated from God. Therefore, he cannot know and experience God’s love and plan for his life.
  3. Jesus Christ is God’s only provision for man’s sin. Through Him, you can know and experience God’s love and plan for your life.
  4. We must individually receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord; then we can know and experience God’s love and plan for our lives.
  5. Once we do, we must worship Him extravagantly for the rest of eternity.

(Yes, I’m adding a fifth)

Think about the wayward son that turns back to his father. Think about us when we first turned back to our Father. What naturally wells up in our hearts? What gratitude, what givenness, what extravagant worship!

One of my favorite primers for worship (personal or corporate) is drawing back to the simplicity of the Gospel. God’s miracle of rescue. His might of redemption. His glory of life eternal. His sovereignty of being Almighty.

Take a moment to return to the simple Gospel and allow yourself to worship. Call your congregation to the pure Gospel and uncork extravagant worship.

I want to know you, Lord, like I know a friend

So I’m laying down all my religion

I want to know you, Lord

I used to think that I could box you in, but I’m laying down

I want to know you, Lord

Lord, I’ve been told to be ashamed

Lord, I’ve been told I don’t measure up

Lord, I’ve been told I’m not good enough

But You’re here with me

I reach out, and you find me in the dust

You say no amount of untruths can separate us

I will rejoice in the simple Gospel

I will rejoice in you, Lord

-from Simple Gospel by United Pursuit

​To whet your appetite, here are a few resources to light your Gospel fire:

The Gospel In Four Minutes

John Piper - What is the Gospel?

What is the Gospel (article)

Let’s worship, extravagantly!