What’s the difference between worship in heaven and here on earth? Well for one, in heaven there is a great multitude of people and they are all participating. They can actually see God on His throne, not to mention the glory and fire that comes from it. They are in the immediate presence of the Lord God. In heaven no one needs to be encouraged to worship God because they can’t help but do so. They can feel the river of God’s love wash over them in great waves. They are so caught up in the glory of God that to do anything else would be out of place.
There is a distinct contrast from earthly worship and heavenly worship in which every member of the multitude is engaged with one voice giving praise to the Lord. Many times when we come together to worship on earth the worship team is worshipping while many in the congregation are unengaged. They are leading us into worship but we’re not following; we’re just watching as though we were attending a concert. When we meet together we need to worship and not just watch, to participate and not just sit idly by. Corporate cooperation is essential to breakthrough and encounter with the living God. The Lord can meet with us when we’re not expecting it but I believe that He enjoys much more meeting with His bride when she is expectant, fully engaged, interested and passionate about Him and what He is doing. Therefore everyone who makes up the Bride of Christ ought to get involved.
Ultimately, we can’t be dependent on worship leaders to worship for us. Worship teams aren’t formed for the purpose of worshipping God in our stead. It is not their responsibility to set our hearts on fire for God; that is the work of the Holy Spirit. The role of a worship leader is that of giving a congregation direction and order within a given service. We all have a responsibility to be engaged in praise, worship and thanks to God personally and privately in our own lives. We can’t be content with watching others who are on fire for God; we too are capable by the Holy Spirit’s help to be a burning ones ourselves, ones who burn with passion for Him.
When everyone is engaged in worship everyday of their lives then when we meet together to worship as a body, the experience should be even more powerful. Everyone’s hearts will already be burning so that the fire spreads and the passion is even greater. The bottom line that Bob shares in this chapter is that the multitude should be the ones leading worship and the worship team ought to follow what the Holy Spirit is doing in the hearts of the multitude. We need to know our identity and realize that as sons and daughters of God, we have His attention. Jesus Christ has made the way for us to come boldly before the throne of grace to worship Him and experience Him on the sea of glass like the great multitude in heaven does.