To hear most christians speak of “worship,” or a “worship service,” one might have to conclude that the word “worship” found in the scriptures involves something to do with music or singing. It’s pretty common for the song-leader in a “church” to be called to the platform to “lead us in worship.”
Like much of what gets peddled in christianity, there is actually no truth to this christianese. It’s something that has morphed over the years because the foundations of the true faith were abolished by christianity when it was invented, so spiritual truths have been hijacked by false interpretations and vacuous counterfeits of their actual meanings—like this notion that worship is an event that people attend.
At the onset, understand that, in scripture, there are two different things that are called “worship,” and neither of them has anything to do with music or singing. One concept that gets translated “worship” means “to prostrate or bow down in reverence to.” This is what most would think of when speaking of “worshiping an idol,” as we can visualize someone bowing down in front of a statue.
The other meaning from the original languages is simply “to work, or to labor.” This also correlates to the word that gets translated “study” in 2 Timothy 2:15, which actually doesn’t precisely mean what many understand it to mean. The word translated “study” there merely means to “work diligently or earnestly.” It is not really associated specifically with “book learning,” but with a diligent pursuit of something.
Now, back to “worship.” In John 4:24, Messiah Yahoshua explains to the Samaritan woman, referring to the temple in Jerusalem, that the physical Jews (foreshadow) worshiped at the physical temple (foreshadow), and that was because the temple was where the physical covenant (foreshadow) was housed.
But, there was coming a time when such worship would no longer happen (because it was merely a foreshadow, not the spiritual real substance). The time was coming when the reason worship occurred at the physical temple (the housing of the covenant) would be placed, as its real substance, within Yah’s people (not the physical Jews, who were only a foreshadow of Messiah’s bride, but the spiritual Jews—those who have the spiritual covenant indwelling them).
The physical covenant (Ten Commandments) would be revealed as its spiritual real substance (Holy Spirit’s seal), and those who are indwelt by the covenant would “worship” wherever they are. Both of those covenants (physical and spiritual) were given on the Feast of Weeks, seven Sabbaths plus one day from the Feast of Firstfruits. The physical was only a foreshadow of the spiritual, which is what we see in Acts 2.
So, those who are indwelt by the spiritual covenant (Holy Spirit) are to “worship” wherever they are—which means they are to reverence Yah at all times, and they are to go about working to further His kingdom (Yah’s kingdom on earth is Messiah’s bride—the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit—His temple, 1 Corinthians 6:19). This is not an event they attend, but a primary purpose of their earthly existence.
To pervert the true meaning of “worship” into an event is actually pagan to the core. During the New Testament era, it was pagans who attended houses of worship (temples) to venerate their pagan deities. And, it was the pagan sun worshipers who honored their sun god on the first day of the week (which is why it got called “SUNday”).
It was Constantine who, out of bitter hatred for the Jewish people, changed the weekly day of assembling for christianity to “the venerable day of the sun.” Note, Constantine remained a sun worshiper and a worshiper of Zeus until his death. So, after converting to “christianity” (a counterfeit of the true faith), Constantine and his Roman cohorts annihilated the Father’s traditions, and replaced them with paganism. Thus, his mandate for honoring the sun god’s day, and not Yah’s ordained day.
Christians are so accustomed to the paganism that they actually call SUNday “the lord’s day,” not understanding that the “lord” of SUNday is the sun god, not Messiah Yahoshua or His Father. Yah’s day has ALWAYS been the seventh day—His weekly Sabbath.
Now, nowhere are we told that New Testament believers had something called a “worship service.” That’s an invention of christianity. The true believers actually worshiped all the time—they set as their primary earthly labor the advancement of Yah’s kingdom (the bride—the dwelling of the Holy Spirit). Worship was not a weekly event, but a lifestyle.
Scripture tells us that the Father desires His children to honor His weekly Sabbath by setting it apart as a day of rest and HOLY CONVOCATION, which simply means “rehearsal.” This means that, on the Sabbath each week, the believers would rest and assemble together in fellowship at their homes (not separate temples), as rehearsal for Yah’s people eternally dwelling together in fellowship. As part of their fellowship, they would come together in prayer and in spiritual instruction, being taught by spiritual elders.
What the believers did on the Sabbath was merely a PART of their lifestyle of worship—the fellowship of Yah’s people. There were no set liturgies—no announcement time, or offering plates being passed, or emotionally-charged invitations. They honored the Sabbaths (weekly and feasts), as the entire Sabbath system is of Messiah (the Sabbaths are part of the Father’s traditions, and they are instructive in doctrine, which guards against being misled by false teachings, like much of what is taught in christianity—which is why Paul taught the Father’s traditions to the Gentile converts—1 Corinthians 11:2, 2 Thessalonians 2:15).
I had a pastor friend ask me, trying to defend his weekly SUNday meetings, “Yes or no. Can someone be saved and worship on Sunday?” This just shows the lack of spiritual understanding rampant in christianity (again, this was a pastor). Worship is not an event, and the day of the week one assembles does not determine whether he is saved. That is determined ONLY by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit—and those who have the covenant are TOLD directly by the Holy Spirit that they are Yah’s children.
However, Yah’s people are to honor Yah’s days—His Sabbaths. So, choosing to ignore Yah’s days, and to identify, rather, with the pagan days of Babylon (the christian holydays), it must be understood that the Holy Spirit can have NO PART in such gatherings, for they are based on what is false (that Yah’s ordained weekly day was changed to SUNday), and looking back at what Messiah Yahoshua said in John 4:24 about worship, those who worship MUST do so in spirit and in TRUTH.
The word “MUST” clearly precludes the Holy Spirit’s participation in what is not truth, and SUNday gathering is not truth, but is a false teaching from a counterfeit of the true faith. And, who is the source of ALL spiritual counterfeits? He often masquerades as an angel of light. To honor the SUNday as “the Lord’s day” actually venerates the one who promulgated that false doctrine—Satan himself. It is actually what it means to take Yah’s name in vain (which is to attach Him to what is false, worthless, or idolatrous).
For more information: Saturday or Sunday? Does It Even Matter?