“Without the heart it is no worship; it is a stage play, an acting a part without being that person really which is acted by us; a hypocrite, in the notion of the word, is a stage player. … We may be truly said to worship God, though we lack perfection; but we cannot be said to worship him if we lack sincerity.”
– Stephen Charnock
“Let everything that has breath praise the LORD! Praise the Lord!”(Ps. 150: 6)
A Psalm of David.
Ascribe to the LORD, O heavenly beings, ascribe to the LORD glory and strength.
Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name; worship the LORD in the splendor of holiness.
The voice of the LORD is over the waters; the God of glory thunders, the LORD, over many waters.
The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is full of majesty.
The voice of the LORD breaks the cedars; the LORD breaks the cedars of Lebanon. He makes Lebanon to skip like a calf, and Sirion like a young wild ox.
The voice of the LORD flashes forth flames of fire.
The voice of the LORD shakes the wilderness; the LORD shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.
The voice of the LORD makes the deer give birth and strips the forests bare, and in his temple all cry, “Glory!”
The LORD sits enthroned over the flood; the LORD sits enthroned as king forever.
May the LORD give strength to his people! May the LORD bless his people with peace!
(Psalms 29 ESV)
“Now, I say we must put heart in our worship. Do not venture to come to this beautiful place of worship, or whatever place of worship you attend, and just sit languidly down to see if the choir can stir you or to see if the preacher can stir you. Oh! stir up your own souls. It is your solemn duty when you go to engage with others in the worship of God– it is your duty to yourself, it is your duty to others, it is your duty to the pastor who wishes to lead your worship, it is your duty to God, who wants the hearts of men, and who will have nothing but their hearts. I know how we feel. Worn by a week’s toil, languid on the Lord’s day through lack of our customary excitement, we go and take our places, jaded and dull, and we are tempted to think, “Now I will see whether the services can make any impression on me; whether the preacher can get hold of me– I hope they may,” and we sit passive to wait and see. Oh, let us not dare thus to deal with the solemnity of the worship of God.”