Raising hands during worship – acceptable or not?

Depends. The answer to the question totally depends on who is being worshiped. Raising hands during worship is not patent to the charismatic groups. And hence it is necessary to understand that the question is not about which system of worship style is acceptable.

If you are in a church where it is normative to raise hands, wave, clap and make other gestures that make it look like you are lost in worship, and you think that you must behave like others around you to feel accepted, then you are seeking to make the “others” your idol. If you are in a church where it is normative to look very sober, and you think that you must behave like others around you to feel accepted, then you are seeking to make the “others” your idol. So it comes back to who are you worshiping? If you seek to worship God – the God who created the heavens and the earth, the God who saves and the God who judges – ┬áthen he decides what is acceptable and what is not.

The Bible has examples of kneeling, raising one or both hands, waving hands, clapping, waving leaves, lying prostrate, bowing heads, eyes closed, eyes open. And all of these are acceptable to God when he is the only object of our worship.

We should be willing to worship God with our hearts, minds, souls and strength. Our emotions also play a part in our worship. When we play a game we yell, we lift our hands, we emote. When we worship God, why should we be who we are not. If you are an animated person be an animated person, if you are not do not pretend. Whatever you do, be yourself. Feel free to lift your hands up in worship when you feel like surrendering or praising. Feel free to kneel down if you are overwhelmed by the sovereignty of God.

As long as when you worship you are not disruptive in the gathering. All things must be done in an orderly manner. Within that guideline, we are free to worship God without holding back our emotions. Feel like raising your hand during worship, go right ahead!

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