“Worship must be vital and real in the heart, and worship must rest on a true perception of God. There must be spirit and there must be truth.” (Desiring God, p. 81)
When it comes to Christian worship, whether singing as a body in church or alone in the car, Jesus gives his people a very clear definition of praise that pleases him. In John’s Gospel, Jesus says, “But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is seeking such people to worship him” (4:23).
As Pastor John Piper explains above, there are two parts to Christian worship that the Father seeks. The first is that God’s people worship in spirit, meaning that they joyfully magnify God’s glory with all of their heart, mind, soul and strength. The opposite of worshiping in spirit looks more like an apathetic, distracted, and often self-focused action. God delights in a believer’s heartfelt devotion, as he or she gladly responds to who God is through song. (Read the chapter on worship in Desiring God to learn more.)
Second, God’s people are to worship him in truth. Piper calls this “[resting] on a true perception of God.” In other words, do the lyrics you are singing accurately convey who God is according to Scripture and what he has accomplished through the gospel? It is important that our worship songs find their basis in Scriptural truth because the Bible reveals to us, in its every word, who the Father is (2 Tim. 3:16) as well as what he has accomplished for us in the work of Jesus Christ.
Here are ten richly true and beautifully composed praise and worship songs for you to learn and sing loudly to God’s glory. Worship the Father in spirit and in truth!
1. All I Have is Christ (Bob Kauflin, 2008)
2. Great is Thy Faithfulness (Original by Chisholm & Runyan; Arrangement by Fernando Ortega, 2006)
3. Behold our God (Megan, Jonathan & Ryan Baird & Stephen Altrogge, 2011)
4. How Rich a Treasure We Possess (Matt Boswell, 2013)
5. This I Believe (The Creed) (Hillsong Music, 2014)
6. Before the Throne of God Above (Original by Bancroft; Alternate Words and Music by Vikki Cook, 1997)
7. Speak, O Lord (Keith Getty & Stuart Townend, 2005)
8. Sing to Jesus (Fernando Ortega, 2006)
9. O Great God (Bob Kauflin, 2006)
10. Man of Sorrows (Hillsong Music, 2013)
What are your favorite contemporary worship songs?