Thursday, April 27, 2017

Is it Egotistical for God to Command Us to Worship Him?

It is undeniable that the God of the Bible commands us to worship Him.  Jesus, quoting the Old Testament (Deu. 6:13), declared, "It is written, 'You shall worship the Lord your God and serve Him only."

As an unbelieving friend recently asked me, "Doesn't this make God arrogant?"  I believe that on a superficial level, one could certainly draw this conclusion.  However, as I shared with my friend, when all the details are considered, this assumption proves hasty.

First off, God commands us to worship Him, but He also gives us free will.  So while He surely commands it, He does not force us to worship Him.  Are there consequences for not worshipping him?  Yes.  But nonetheless we still have a choice.

Second, if God truly did create all things and sustains them by His will (Rev. 4:11), it seems the Bible is correct in asserting that He is worthy of worship.  Furthermore, if God has truly expressed His love through Jesus on the cross by paying for our sins, so we wouldn’t have to (and so that we could have eternal life), it seems that He is worthy of worship.  When one understands who God truly is and what He has done for us, the natural outward expression is thankfulness and worship.

Third, it should be noted that we all worship something.  It may be money, self, security or our spouse, but we all worship something.  God realizes (after all, on the Christian worldview, He created us!) that we can only find true, lasting fulfillment in Him; therefore, He commands us to worship Him so that we can experience the peace and security that comes with doing so.  I know I have experienced that in my own life.  So, on this view, God’s commands for us to worship Him are actually acts of love, not arrogance.

Ultimately, if God exists (and I believe we have good reasons to believe He does), then He alone has the right to command us to worship Him and He alone is worthy of that worship.

Courage and Godspeed,

For Further Investigation

Why does God demand, seek, or request that we worship Him?

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