Worship thrives on wonder. We can admire, appreciate and perhaps even adore someone without our having a sense of wonder. But we cannot worship without wonder. For worship to be worship, it must contain something of the otherness of God.
I've come to love that word—"otherness." It's such a great worship word. Otherness gives us a sense that God is so pure, matchless and unique that no one else and nothing else even comes close. He is altogether glorious—unequalled in splendor and unrivalled in power. He is beyond the grasp of human reason—far above the reach of even the loftiest scientific mind. He is inexhaustible, immeasurable and unfathomable—eternal, immortal and invisible. The highest mountain peaks and the deepest canyon depths are just tiny echoes of His proclaimed greatness. And the blazing stars above, the faintest emblems of the full measure of His glory.
Many music critics note that the skill of songwriter Bruce Springsteen lies in his ability to take the everyday, the ordinary, and make it sound extraordinary. Sometimes in the Church we find ourselves doing the total opposite—we take the extraordinary revelation of God and somehow manage to make Him sound completely ordinary! We fail to communicate the sense of God's otherness. As A. W. Tozer puts it, "Left to ourselves we tend immediately to reduce God to manageable terms."
Time after time the book of Isaiah reminds us of the uniqueness of God: "I will not give my glory to another" (42:8). "I am the first and I am the last; apart from me there is no God" (44:6). "To whom will you compare me or count me equal?" (46:5). "I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me" (46:9). In light of Scriptures like these, ...1
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The Otherness of God
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