Psalm 95:6 O come, let us worship and bow down: let us kneel before the Lord our maker.

Psalm 99:5 Exalt ye the Lord our God, and worship at his footstool: for he is holy.

Leviticus 10:3 Then Moses said unto Aaron, This is it that the LORD spake, saying, I will be sanctified in them that come nigh me, and before all the people I will be glorified. And Aaron held his peace.

Isaiah 42:8 I am the Lord: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.

Luke 18:9 And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:

10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

12 I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.

14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.


MEMORY VERSE: Though the LORD be high, yet hath he respect unto the lowly: but the proud he knoweth afar off. —Psalm 138:6


CENTRAL THOUGHT: The scriptures give us principles of the right attitudes of worship: bowing, kneeling, glorifying God alone, humbling ourselves, being aware of our needs and seeking His mercy, and having an attitude of reverence and godly fear.




Psalm 95:6 “Kneel”: to bless; adore with bended knees. It is the same word as “I will bless the Lord” in Psalm 16:7 and other passages.

Leviticus 10:3 “Sanctified”: to be set apart or consecrated. We “sanctify” the Lord when we set Him up on high and apart from everyone and everything else and “consecrate” Him to have first place. “Glorified”: from a root meaning heavy; weighty. In a good sense, this means honourable, abounding, rich.

Isaiah 42:8 “My glory”: the honor due to Me (Jehovah).

Luke 18:14 “Justified”: to show to be or declare righteous. “Exalteth”: elevate; lift or raise up. “Abased”: to make low; humiliate.




Our lesson begins today with the call to worship; to bow down in humility because He is holy, and to kneel to bless and adore Him because He is worthy; to lift Him up as Lord in our hearts and in our lives. This is a psalm of David, as confirmed in Hebrews 4:7. The ninety-ninth is also supposed to be written by David.

The verse from Leviticus comes from the tragic story of Nadab and Abihu, Aaron’s two sons, who offered strange fire upon the golden altar and were immediately devoured by fire from the Lord. Some suppose they were under the influence of wine, or that they were lifted up in pride because of their office. However that may be, their offense was aggravated: they took common fire instead of fire from the altar; they went together into a place where only one was allowed; they offered it at a time which was not appropriate; and they were unauthorized to perform the incense service. They ventured carelessly and presumptuously into the place where only the high priest could go. Moses’ stern command to Aaron forbade grief or bitterness because of their death, establishing a precedent for Israel that the worship of the most holy God was utterly sacred and must not be defiled by pride, presumption, carelessness, or any “human” element.

God, speaking through the prophet Isaiah, reiterates the concept of honor, reverence, and glory to be given only to God.

The story Jesus told about the two men praying in the temple shows us what God will bless and justify in worship. Only the heart that is humble and senses its need of God and His redemption will receive His approval.

—Sis. Angela Gellenbeck




  1. A Consuming Fire: What brought about the swift judgment fire upon Nadab and Abihu?
  2. Of No Avail: Can we hope for blessing and approval from God if we are arrogant and selfrighteous? (But I am doing everything right! Isn’t that important?)
  3. Near or Afar Off: Which treatment do we want from God, and how can we approach Him to gain His nearness?



Someone has said that pride is the chief vice which tempts the most righteous. If that is indeed true, then professors of holiness have a responsibility to guard against all arrogance or presumption, especially as we worship. Beware of looking down on others nearby who may have glaring spiritual needs. We may not be aware of our own needs, which are just as glaring in God’s eyes. We must ever resist the temptation to glory in our spiritual progress, to think that we have special privileges, or that we are beyond having boundaries or limitations. This is obviously what made Aaron’s sons so reckless and headstrong.

Every aspect of a worship service must be bathed in humility and a strong sense of our need of God. “All is vain unless the Spirit of the Holy One comes down.” Let there be no glory in man or man’s abilities. A worship service is not a talent show. It is not a place to applaud one another or stroke egos. Although we show honor to the aged, seniority doesn’t always designate who is used of the Lord to minister. We are all just empty vessels; we are all just brethren on the same level. And we’re all here to bring glory to God.

Reverence toward God and a lowly estimation of ourselves in regard to our brother— these are vital ingredients in worship.

—Sis. Angela Gellenbeck



In Matthew Henry’s Study Bible it speaks concerning Psalm 138:6 of the “favor God bears to this humble people. He smiles upon them as well-pleased with them, and sooner or later, He will put honor upon them, while He knows the proud afar off; knows them, but disowns them.” In Matthew 7:21-24 where it refers to the end of time, there were people who were saying, “Lord, Lord,” as if surely He should know them. But He said, “I never knew you. Depart from me ye that work iniquity.”

Our world has strayed so far from God with entertainment and noise, the Spirit of God has long departed. It reminds me of I Kings 18:21-38, when Elijah and the 450 false prophets of Baal had a showdown. The false prophets made so much noise and emotion they tore the place apart trying to get their god’s attention. But Elijah quietly put things back together, humbly knelt down and prayed, and the real fire fell from heaven, convincing the people whose God was really God.

True worship to God honors Christ in the same humble way today. We have nothing to be ashamed of when we worship God in spirit and in truth. In “Humble Thyself to Walk With God” (# 298 in the Evening Light Songs), the first verse reads,

“If thou wouldst have the dear Savior from heaven Walk by thy side from the morn ‘till the even, There is a rule that each day you must follow; Humble thyself to walk with God.”

Let us not be ashamed by our humble way of worship to God, in kneeling before Him when we pray and lifting Him up in our singing with heartfelt praise. Our God loves to be honored.

—Bro. James Bell