FEB 14 8am
In a worship service, so many believers are so busy worrying about what others think, that it is hard for them to get into God’s presence. Over 40 years ago, at my first charismatic prayer meeting, I started thinking, what will people think if I lift my hands; then thought, what will they think if I don’t. I finally decided, I don’t care what people think, I am here to bless the Lord. That needs to be our hearts.
Some people don’t want to look too spiritual. Others want too. Both are wrong motives based on the fear of man. I have been in services where I’ve noticed some leaders not lifting their hands in worship. Are they too sophisticated or spiritual (works both ways)? Not a particularly good example to the congregation.
The Word talks of “lifting holy hands.” “I desire then that in every place men should pray, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting” (1 Tim. 2:8). Ah, is that why some hesitate to lift their hands in worship, a false humility, or not believing they have “holy hands?” I could see that holding back a purely religious person who doesn’t know the Lord. But, if you are Born Again, you have “holy” hands,” because Jesus dwells in you by the Holy Spirit. And we do it “without wrath and doubting [dissension].” It’s a matter of the heart, not our feelings or thought life. Is God not worthy?
It is a good tradition carried over from Old Testament times. “Let my prayer be counted as incense before you, and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice!” (Ps. 141:2); “And Ezra blessed the Lord, the great God, and all the people answered, ‘Amen, Amen,’ lifting up their hands…” (Neh. 8:6).
I noticed at a recent worship service with a mixture of evangelicals and charismatics that many evangelicals, even mainline believers, lift their hands in worship as well now days. Nothing particularly charismatic about it, other than it is demonstrative. It’s the Word, after all.