Dictionary Meaning of Praise and Worship
Praise: express warm approval of or admiration for…(Concise Oxford Dictionary) (esp. to intelligent beings or deity, it can also be to unintelligible or non-living things.)
Worship: the feeling or expression of reverence and adoration for a deity. Religious rites and ceremonies. (Concise Oxford Dictionary)
When ‘praise and worship’ is mentioned, we or most Christians think of praising God with music, singing and probably dancing too. Praise and worship is also a genre for contemporary church songs. Praise is used for songs with faster beat and worship for slower ones. Songs by Hillsong, Sonic Flood, I Worship, Matt Redman, and Chris Tomlin are good examples of the praise and worship genre. Other gospel songs fall under different genres like hymns, gospel rock and so on. It doesn’t mean they are not songs of praise. We can praise and worship God in all category of music. Let us just remember that God don’t care about style. All that we really need is a heart of worship.
Biblical Revelation of Praise and Worship
Praise: To glorify, magnify, to give thanks etc. etc. because of the things God has done for us. To proclaim His greatness.
Worship: All of the praise meaning, however, focusing more on submission, reverence, adoration, awe, and to marvel God’s glory. To revere His Greatness.
Praise and worship is about God and for God, it belongs to God alone, focusing only on God’s glory. Therefore when we sing, “I surrender all…All to Thee my blessed savior I surrender all” we’re rather committing ourselves to God and not actually praising or worshiping. Gospel songs can be songs of petition, testimonial songs, confessional songs etc.