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Discussion Forum : Revivals And Church History : Awful, wonder, mystery and worship

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Joined: 2003/6/11
Posts: 9192
Santa Clara, CA

 Awful, wonder, mystery and worship

Made mention of this elsewhere and thought it might be good to develop and see what others expressions might be.

For starters, this old 'archaic' word and what it used to express at least to the saints of days gone by. A note of appreciation about deriving our definitions from inside and outside of scripture (Thanks Ron). Will give both;

AWFUL, a.[/b] [awe and full.]

1. That strikes with awe; that fills with profound reverence; as the awful majesty of Jehovah.

2. That fills with terror and dread; as the awful approach of death.

3. Struck with awe; scrupulous.

A weak and awful reverence for antiquity.

Shakespeare uses it for worshipful, inspiring respect by authority or dignity.

Our common people use this word in the sense of frightful, ugly, detestable.

From Ye Old Websters 1828 Dictionary


Being that a scriptural equivalent is not exacting, might need a couple to gain the same sense and do correct me here if I am off;

A primitive root; to fear; morally to revere; causatively to frighten: - affright, be (make) afraid, dread (-ful), (put in) fear (-ful, -fully, -ing). (be had in) reverence (-end), X see, terrible (act, -ness, thing).

Deu 7:21 Thou shalt not be affrighted at them: for the LORD thy God is among you, a mighty God and [b]terrible[/b].

Deu 10:17 For the LORD your God is God of gods, and Lord of lords, a great God, a mighty, and a [b]terrible[/b], which regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward:

Neh 9:32 Now therefore, our God, the great, the mighty, and the [b]terrible[/b] God, who keepest covenant and mercy, let not all the trouble seem little before thee, that hath come upon us, on our kings, on our princes, and on our priests, and on our prophets, and on our fathers, and on all thy people, since the time of the kings of Assyria unto this day.

Psa 47:2 For the LORD most high is [b]terrible[/b]; he is a great King over all the earth.

My goodness, have hardly begun here and the sense of awe, the sense of difference in fear of a reverential sort. Will pause here to hear what you all might bring to this, something tells me this could be very, very productive to our understanding.

Mike Balog

 2005/11/24 12:10Profile

Joined: 2005/1/11
Posts: 234
United Kingdom

 Re: Awful, wonder, mystery and worship


I am not entirely sure what you want one to do, but I presume to examine the four words and just try to bring out the depths of there meanings from various sourses other than strictly biblical, I am a little slow at 11.30pm, but here is my best shot.

'Unto whom I [b]swore in my wrath[/b] that they should not enter into my rest.'
Psalm 95:11

'Let us therefore [b]fear[/b], lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it.'
Heb 4:1

The sermon on this past Sunday was in Hebrews and our Pastor spoke about this 'fear', I checked with my esword and found the verse in Psalms associated with it.

Now when my Dad used to swear in his wrath, it was an awful moment of deep terror to one's very marrow. It was a terrifying moment. I can think of others, when my headmaster a man I deeply revered and feared, had to cane me for the first and only time, I was so afraid of him, not the punishment I was to receive but the words that would come from the mouth of this master debater.
His name was Mr Whiteford. {After the hiding, I never returned to his office again. It was a moment of awful terror.)

I have often wondered about the passage to follow....

'It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God.'
Heb 10:31

Certainly if one reads a little Jonathan Edwards on the topic, one will have a brand new respect for the English language. 'Sinner in the hands of an angry God.'

That's it for me.

In Jesus,

Eric John Sawyer

 2005/11/24 16:28Profile

Joined: 2003/7/31
Posts: 2774
Phoenix, Arizona USA

 Re: Awful, wonder, mystery and worship


[i]as a verb[/i];
BDB Definition:
1) to be astounded, be stunned, be amazed, be dumbfounded
1a) (Qal) to be astounded
1b) (Hithpael) to astonish yourself, be astounded, be astonished at one another
Part of Speech: verb

(Hab 1:5) Behold ye among the heathen, and regard, and wonder marvellously: for [I] will work a work in your days, [which] ye will not believe, though it be told [you].

[i]as a noun[/i];
BDB Definition:
1) wonder, marvel
1a) wonder (extraordinary, hard to understand thing)
1b) wonder (of God’s acts of judgment and redemption)
Part of Speech: noun masculine

(Psa 77:11) I will remember the works of the LORD: surely I will remember thy wonders of old.

If God is present at every point in space, if we cannot go where He is not, cannot even conceive of a place where He is not, why then has not that Presence become the one universally celebrated fact of the world? The patriarch Jacob, 'in the waste howling wilderness,' gave the answer to that question. [b]He saw a vision of God and cried out in wonder, 'Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not.'[/b] (Gen_28:16) Jacob had never been for one small division of a moment outside the circle of that all-pervading Presence. But he knew it not. That was his trouble, and it is ours. Men do not know that God is here. What a difference it would make if they knew. -from [i]The Pusuit of God[/i] by AW Tozer

He saw a vision of God...Oh Lord, anoint our eyes with eyesalve that we too may see, and wonder!

In Christ,


Ron Halverson

 2005/11/24 18:34Profile

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