Today a brief look at the opening prayer in the worship service, sometimes called the invocation. This is also a response to God’s Call to worship Him. We can pray before or after we sing, it doesn’t matter much. The point is to exalt and magnify God with our words, and ask Him to be present for our blessing as we worship Him. If you know the ACTS acronym for worship – adoration, confession, thanksgiving, supplication, you’ll notice that the worship service follows this pattern. We adore God in response to His call to worship Him. We confess to Him. In the consecration section we offer prayers of thanksgiving and petition.
Some are bothered by asking God to be present, invoking His presence, when He is already everywhere. This might be a problem if we didn’t see so often in Scripture God’s promise to bless or be with or to save someone, and then they turn around and ask for that very thing. Abraham believes God and then asks how he will know for sure, Gen 15:6-8. God promises Moses He will go with Israel in the desert, and Moses then asks that God go with Israel in the desert. God promises David to build him a house, and David asks God to do what He promised. God speaks words of greeting and blessing to us in the call to worship and greeting, and we petition Him to be with us and to bless us.
Next week, the confession of sin