Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Why Worship? | Navaz D

This message was shared  by Navaz D'cruz at Word of Grace Church on January 28th, 2018. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here.

This year we want to go wider and deeper. We could easily jump into the what and how of worship. But first let’s look at why worship? Is it because of tradition? Is there something more? The basis of all our beliefs is the Word of God.

Q. Why do we worship?

We worship because we were created for worship. The westminister catechism says, the chief end of man is to worship God. At the fall, we were separated from God. But God was always looking for relationship. Psalm 118 talking about idols says those who worship them will become like them. The more we worship God, the more we become like him. We wont become God but we reflect Christlikeness. We choose to identify which kingdom we belong to. Every time we glorify God, it is a declaration against principalities. Whatever becomes the focus of your worship, you will begin to reflect.

Idolatry and Adultery go hand in hand because it is betrayal of where your devotion should lie. In adultery, affection that is meant for one in a covenant relationship, is given to another. In the same way, when we worship anything apart from God, it is idolatry, it is adultery.

John 4 tells us that God is looking for worshippers, not worship. He is looking for you. It is always about a relationship.

Col 3:16 “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”

Eph 5:18-19but be filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart”

Singing is repeated so many times! The psalms are full of singing. It is one of the chief ways of worship. Music, melody, art, dance, creativity, all these give a voice to the mystery and the hiddenness of God.

Q. Who is worship for?

It is the first command. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength.
Worship is about the presence of God. It is not about how good I feel. Worship is God centred. The object of worship is Jesus. It is a heart response to God.

1.      thanksgiving- is a response to God for what he has done.
2.      Praise- Acknowledgement of who he is.
3.      Worship- where we bow low and acknowledge who he is and respond with who we are.

Do you need to sacrifice in thanksgiving and praise? Yes. In worship, you are the sacrifice- I will give you all my worship. Worship is saying that I am here and offer myself to you. You trust what you worship. When we trust in God, you become like what you trust. 

Trust is an expression of Worship.

In worship, we minister to God, we minister to each other, we minister to the lost. When we minister to God first, the other two taken care of.

Q. Is worship a means to an end?

No. It is focus on the person who is worthy of worship. It is like my children hugging me and kissing me only because they wanted something from us. Payment for affection- is prostitution. We come to god in worship bargaining for things- that is not worship. Worship is because he is worthy. But because God is good and abounding in his riches, he pours out. He cannot withhold his goodness when he sees us delight in him.

We need to keep our focus on the wonder of the person we are worshipping.

Q. How do we worship?

As a son/daughter of God and from this place of identity we worship Him. His spirit in us cries ‘Abba, Father’. We often ask you to bring a scripture or prophetic word or a song. The cross declared all of us priests and kings to God. Somewhere we lost it. There came a clergy and laity divide. Church became front-led. 

1 corinthians 12:7; 1 corinthians 14:12; 26- everyone has a psalm, hymn, a spiritual song, something to edify the body.

Prophecy is revealing the heart of God. Sometimes prophecy is foretelling, what is to come. Prophecy will not contradict scripture and will not condemn. Prophecy is there for our strengthening. We have seen such amazing things happen when each one comes prepared with something to share with one another. When we all tune ourselves to Jesus, we will all be in harmony. There will a beautiful symphony of worship. This is the deeper we want to go into in 2018. We want to go wider in that each one of us is able to share and prophesy.


We want to see God’s presence. When it does, the unbeliever will say, surely God is in their midst. You and I are the presence bearers of God. Wherever we go, we take His presence with us.


Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.or

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Unity in the Church: Part 3 | Daniel Macleod

This message was preached  by Daniel Macleod at The Regions Beyond Conference 'the HUB' in November 2017 and the video replayed at Word of Grace Church on January 21st, 2018. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here.

7 declarations for a United church- these are not suggestions, but declarations:

1.      A people who take on jobs they don’t want to do if it means our church will thrive. Jesus wanted the cup taken away but did his father’s will. We may not all work in our sweet spot of gifting. The church is built on hundreds of mini-sacrifices for each other’s success.
2.      We are a people who will say sorry quickly- Not waiting for the other person to respond. In church, people will annoy you and you will annoy them. As a leader, he is the first to apologize. Leaders take on more criticism than they deserve. That’s what Jesus did.
3.      We are people who build up the church and not our self-esteem- I’m not earnestly desiring more gifts so that I can feel good about myself. It is for the edification of the body.
4.      We are a people who are happy for our names to be forgotten- “ Good to great”- it rises and falls on the leadership. An iron strong will to see the company thrive. CEOs who are humble. How much should this be true of the church- that we are willing to work hard for her success even if we don’t get noticed.
5.      We are a people who do not have to defend our reputation- George Whitfield when people criticized him said “ Let my name perish but let Christ be crucified”. You don’t need to defend yourself.
6.      We are a people willing to give our position to another- whether it is passing on the baton, or there is a more gifted person, this is the reality of the church. Settle in your heart now how you will respond.
7.      We are a people who celebrate the success of others in front of them and behind their backs with genuine joy- especially when they are doing as well at something that you do too.
We disappear in this world if we do all the above. But it says, therefore God exalted Jesus to the highest place. If we forgo glory in this world, there is a glory that awaits us. Revelation 3:21- Jesus will say come and sit at my throne. Look at what was done. You name is written in the Lambs book of life.

Discussion points:
1.      Evaluate yourself on all the above points. Be as transparent and honest as you can before God. Share one thing that you heard that touched you deeply.
2.      If your groups evaluate each other. If you have seen a person doing any of the above can you encourage them by telling them that you have noticed “so and so” about the person?
3.      Share in your groups 2 things you will do differently as a result of hearing this message.

4.      From the above, which area are you putting into practice, and in which ones are you struggling? Maybe you could share this with your spouse or friend and ask them to hold you to account so that you could grow in that area.


Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.

Unity in the Church: Part 2 | Daniel Macleod

This message was preached  by Daniel Macleod at The Regions Beyond Conference 'the HUB' in November 2017 and the video replayed at Word of Grace Church on January 14th, 2018. To listen/download the audio please click here

Source of Unity:

Philippians 2:3 roughly translates to- we are here for one another’s success. Think about others- other church plants, others’ finances, fatigue etc. If I am doing that to others and all are doing to each other we have a wonderful matrix of unity and a body of powerful witnesses. Paul wants to send Timothy because there is “No one like him”. 

Don’t you want that reputation? Always be there for the other person.

This is not a try harder message. We need to beware of pride creeping into our hearts- we may think we try harder than most.

We need to be baptised afresh into the God we love. Paul reminds us of who we are in Christ. When we are in Christ we should automatically become like him. We should know Him deeply in our hearts.

Phil 2:4-8- It comes in these 4 verses. If you want prominence, hierarchy etc. there is nothing higher than Jesus. In Isaiah 6:1- he saw God high and lifted up. In Colossians 1:15-18 he is called the image of the invisible God. But in Phil 2:2, He became a servant. He emptied himself of his glory and majesty that would attract us to him. He came as a peasant boy born out of wedlock. He acted as a servant. Every time anyone tried to give Him empty glory, He walked away. He knew his role was to descend and not to ascend. Rejection marked his ministry.  

In Phil 2:3-4 it says that he was obedient to death and rejection. To the point that even His father forsook him- left destitute to die alone- from the highest highs to the lowest lows.

The cross is not an exalted thing. He was crucified like a common criminal. We would not have even realized it was him. He did this all for you and me. This was the way He walked and this is the way we should walk in our communities.

Points for Discussion:
1.      We say we are a part of an apostolic movement/ group of churches. Is there anything that we do at Word of Grace reflective of that value?
2.      How can we as individual members of Word of Grace and collectively do something to express the biblical value.
3.      What does being there for one another look like? Give concrete examples.

4.      Have you been there for your brothers and sisters? Have you felt supported as well?

Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Unity in the Church: Part 1 | Daniel Mcleod

This message was preached  by Daniel Mcleod at The Regions Beyond Conference 'the HUB' in November 2017 and the video replayed at Word of Grace Church on January 7th, 2018. To listen/download the audio please click hereTo listen to the Sunday's worship and prophetic contributions please click here.

Phil 1:27- 3027 Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, 28 and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God. 29 For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, 30 engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.

Zinzindorf made a village for the Christians who were being persecuted who were from different backgrounds. But they could not get along with one another and had a fall out. He prayed and preached on unity. He created a document of covenant centred around Christ crucified.

We need to unite around essential things. The whole village came together and broke bread. The power of God came- the meeting lasted 10 hours. There was weeping, joy etc. They instituted a prayer meeting that lasted 100 years. From there, many people went out with the gospel. They realized they could not do without the power of God.

I pray we would experience power and it would lead to a missionary movement from this place. The success of the Kingdom of God through Regions Beyond depends on our unity. The speed of gospel advance is based on unity. Paul in prison is more concerned with gospel advance and not his own situation in jail.
Throughout the book of Philippians, this seems to be a driving force. In chapter 4, he is pleading with 2 women to agree with each other. He is pleading for the unity of the church.

UNITY- what is it?

It is not organizational. It’s not some magic potion. It is not even about doctrinal uniformity. Eph 4- Unity of the faith is important, but not on every minor point.
Paul is talking about being of one mind. A heart attitude- it is a relational thing. It is about having each other’s back.

Q. What is the result of Unity?

1.      It created an effective army- Those 2 women went from being shoulder to shoulder to being face to face. In the strength of unity there is more freedom for advance. Eg: Rugby- Binding.

2.      Church Unity displays the character of God: In John 17 Jesus prays that we may be one. In  God we have 3 distinct being, yet He is One. Phil 2:1-2 “So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, 2 complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind” Then it is our role to live it out in unity. When people come to your church, they should experience the unity and the Trinitarian God through you.

Q. Do people walk into the presence of God in your worship?

3.      A united church proves the power and reality of the gospel: Our life should provide evidence of unity and the power of God. We are in a very fractioned world. Social Media that ought to connect people has become a platform for disunity and hate speech and lonliness. We don’t want a friendly church, we want friends who are loyal and trustworthy. “How we display a united church is the validity of our faith”- Zinzindorf

THE ROOT OF DISUNITY:

Philippians 2:3- “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves” Paul does not sugarcoat it. Where there is jealousy and selfish ambition, there will be disorder. Glory in this world is fading and finite. Satan reflects this- he was ambitious- he wanted to ascend above God and make a name for himself. This is the exact opposite of our God who descended.

Here is the tough thing- you can try and build God’s church with Satan’s attitude. You can be a leader that has this satanic attitude that thinks I want to build this church so I ascend some spiritual career ladder! If you do that, the result will be a fractured, divided and painful community. If you got to where you have with that attitude, don’t be surprised if others around you are doing the same thing and want your position. We don’t want that.

Selfish ambition and empty glory will always end up in disunity.

Study Guide for Part 1:

Points for reflection and Discussion:
  1. How would you define unity? What does it look like in a local church?
  2.  Is unity uniformity? Can you have diversity in unity? How is it expressed in the local church?
  3. What from the above can you relate with personally? Have you ever been in a situation that has not helped advance unity: in your family, Church or job? What did you do about it?
  4. How can you help advance unity at Word of Grace. Be very practical in your answer.


Word of Grace is an Evangelical (Born Again),  Spirit filled (Charismatic), Reformed, English speaking church in Pune that upholds the Bible as God's inspired Word for life. We are a church community that have people from every part of India and parts of the world. We are here to put the Great Command and the Great Commission into practice by equipping and releasing every member into works of service. To know more about us please log onto www.wordofgracechurch.org.
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