He came in His Father’s name and we crucified Him, Jn 5:43-44, “I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not: if another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive. How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that cometh from God only?” Have you noticed how many more award ceremonies there are today than there were fifty years ago? Who are we honoring with these award ceremonies and their ensuing box office receipts? And, who is the real Rock Star?
We all want to high five the star as he passes by us on the way to the court/stage, we all wanted to share in the glory Michael Jordan created, night after night. Not everyone got that opportunity, however, Jesus allows all of us to share in His glory by inviting us into His presence and He makes Himself available twenty-four seven, Rev 3:20, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.”
How many of us have wondered why we love rock concerts, or rocking sports arenas, with their crowds of worshippers screaming and yelling? We want to be there in the arena/theatre to feel the pulse. Sure, watching it on TV would be a purer experience, if the performance were all we were after, for we could rewind what we have seen/heard to enjoy that moment, again. Sure, going to the event means we have to deal with traffic, crowds, mediocre food and exorbitant costs. But, we want to be in the crowd worshipping our heroes, why?
Could it be that we have a desire deep within us to be in the presence of God? Are we programmed to feel a need to experience the pulse of billions of beings praising and worshipping? Is this the vision Isaiah is describing, Is 6:1-4, “In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory. And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.” The posts of the door moved, now that is feeling the pulse.
Does Isaiah’s description remind us of some of those rock concerts or the opening introductions at an NBA basketball game? OK, maybe not exactly the same, however, the similarities are rather striking. Someone, or some group/team, is being worshipped and a crowd is screaming out their support in the form of praise and worship, “we are number one”, or “rock on!”
The difference is that God truly is a Rock Star. He created everything that exists and He has a plan in place that will culminate with the creation of a family He will live with for all eternity. Can I really compare that to the game-winning shots Michael Jordan made? Don’t get me wrong, Michael was the best player and Taylor Swift creates a lot of excitement, they were/are fun to watch, but there is no comparison.
King David understood this when he wrote, Ps 63:3-4, “Because thy lovingkindness is better than life, my lips shall praise thee. Thus will I bless thee while I live: I will lift up my hands in thy name.” The feelings King David is expressing are the ones we will share as a crowd in heaven. It will be better than the best rock concert, the last inning of game seven of the World Series, or the last two minutes of the Super Bowl game.
God is our only true Rock Star! He is a rock, because He is strong and never changes, Ps 18:2, “The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.” and He created all of the stars, Ps 8:3-4, “When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?” Everything else is a poor attempt to copy the experience of being in the presence of the Lord! We all know that the enemy will continue bringing us counterfeits of the real thing, as he tries to turn our heads and hearts away from God. Satan hates it when we praise and worship God. So, he gives us substitutes, anything he can find that dulls our senses enough to distract us from the real thing, the Rock Star of all eternity, God! This is why the first commandment God gave us was to have no gods before Him, Ex 20:3, “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.” He does not want Satan to lead us away from Him. Heroes can be good things, but not when we treat them like gods, or when we worship them, and we should never put them before our God.
God did not create us to live dull lives of routine worship; so sporting events and rock concerts are to be treated as entertainment, not worshipped as idols or gods. He created us to have abundant lives, Jn 10:10: “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly” and healthy entertainment enlivens us and increases our enjoyment of this life. My love for music led me to listen to songs that moved me, however, when I paid attention to the lyrics, I was dismayed. Someone was trying to sneak negative thoughts into my mind. Now I listen to K-Love and hear the same rhythms and beats, with lyrics that support my feelings of joy, bring me closer to God and His peace, which He so freely offers to all of us. We have choices in this life, some bring us closer to God and the abundantly joyful life He offers, and some lead us away from God and are the tools of the enemy.
We are to enjoy this life as we fulfill our part in His plan, Matt 12:50, “For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.” When we do the will of the Father, we are praising Him by our actions, we are leading others to Him and if it is not enjoyable, we are putting too much of ourselves in His plan. Paul and Silas teach us about the joy we are to feel, no matter what the circumstances, as they sang in prison after being beaten, Acts 16:25, “And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.” Living in the will of the Father should not be hard work, Matt 11:30, “For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
It is rather simple, follow Jesus and the Father’s plan for our lives and it will not feel like a burden. It will be totally joyful! Instead of sex, drugs and rock ‘n’ roll; we will have peace, joy, and eternal love! We will be celebrating with the only true Rock Star! Rock on!
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