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Garris Elkins: "Worship Will Lead the Way in 2023"

Garris Elkins
Jan 4, 2023

From the Desks of Steve Shultz and Julie A. Smith:

Steve ShultzThis is such a now and needed word for this new year and beyond. Garris Elkins "tells it like it is," so to speak, as he's confronting the evil in our day.

Folks, we can no longer hide our face in the sand, hoping and thinking that all the challenges we face will go away by themselves.

What is a very important way that we will confront the darkness we see? WORSHIP.

Garris Elkins saw that our worship will elevate and get us ready for the days he says here:

Our ability to worship in all circumstances that arise in 2023 will be a critical part of our spiritual advancement... In the coming year, divine interventions by the Lord will take place, pulling down earthly thrones of authority that have been set up against the knowledge of God. Keep your eyes on the Lord, not on earthly developments. That focus will be critical in the coming year, especially during times of worship.

Garris also gives us confirming events that took place in biblical times as they worshiped the Lord in all circumstances.

Steve ShultzBe encouraged that your worship unto the Lord will lead the way in this new year, in ways you have never known. (To Subscribe to the Elijah List subscribe here.)

In Christ,

Steve Shultz and Julie A. Smith, Co-Editors
Elijah List Publications

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A Psalm for the New Year

When the Lord gave me the assignment to write this word, I had nothing to offer. I stopped and prayed a simple prayer asking Him if there was anything He wanted to say. After a moment of pause, I saw the number "73." At first, I thought it was odd that He highlighted a single number for me without providing context.

Then I made a connection. I turn 73 this week. In college, my football jersey was number 73. My wife Jan and I were married in 1973. After realizing the recurrence of the number 73 in my own history, I asked the Lord another question: "Do You have something that aligns with these numbers?"

Immediately, He took me to Psalm 73, written by Asaph. Asaph led the tabernacle choir. In our present context, he was a worship leader. His name means "to gather together." He wrote songs, played instruments, and was a talented singer. Asaph was also known as a prophet and poet (see 2 Chronicles 29:30; Nehemiah 12:46). He was one of David's primary musicians and employed his gifts to lead worship as the Ark was moved from the home of Obed-Edom to Jerusalem.

Asaph's style of leadership has been described as "distinctive, forceful, and spiritual" (see Bible Gateway's Encyclopedia of the Bible, under Asaph). In other words, his music was clear, to the point, and not vague in its content and presentation.

With this background in mind, I went to Psalm 73. I began to unpack the message of the Psalm to gather any instructions the Lord might have for us as we step into the new year.

Keeping a Pure Heart and Worshiping in All Circumstances

Our ability to worship in all circumstances that arise in 2023 will be a critical part of our spiritual advancement. Those who choose to worship God will move in step with Him toward greater truth and revelation, even as the world appears to move deeper into deception.

Solomon wrote that nothing touches the heart of our Shepherd King more than when we turn and look at Him – face-to-face with Him – especially in the most troubling times. He is undone by a single glance, even as our hearts are breaking over what is taking place in personal lives and in the world. We will only be able to worship Him in this way on this side of Heaven.

Asaph continues: "Truly God is good to Israel, to those whose hearts are pure" (Psalm 73:1). Worship motivates us to seek purity. It also helps us remain pure before the Lord. Before we devise a spiritual battle plan or take steps to correct the wrongs we see being perpetrated, we must make sure our hearts are pure and free from any agenda or opinion except the Lord's. This will require that we die to ourselves and the expectations of our preferred outcome. Otherwise, we will be stained by our pride or succumb to pleasing others at the expense of following God. (Photo via Piqsels)

Don't Betray Your Hope in God! In the Midst of Darkness, He Is at Work

In the following verses, Asaph defined the challenges he faced while trying to remain a pure vessel usable to God. Regarding the concerns he faced, Asaph said, "But as for me, I almost lost my footing... For I envied the proud when I saw them prosper despite their wickedness" (verses 2-3). He saw the perpetrators of evil scoff and speak only evil. In their pride, they sought to crush others of differing views. It was then as it is today, when an opposing point of view that challenges the accepted status quo is censored and crushed into silence.

Asaph wrote: "They boast against the very heavens, and their words strut throughout the earth" (verse 9). Yuval Harari is a top advisor to Klaus Schwab of the World Economic Forum (WEF). During an interview on, he said, "We don't have to wait until Christ's second coming in order to overcome death. A couple of geeks in a laboratory can do it, if you give them enough time and money."

The interviewer then pointed out something Harari wrote, where he stated, "God seems to be making a comeback, but this is a mirage. God is dead – it just takes awhile to get rid of the body." At that point, both the interviewer and Harari broke out in laughter. This is the spirit behind the initiatives being formulated which they are trying to force upon the nations for compliance.

Because of an overwhelming display of evil in Asaph's time, and in ours, something happens to people. They become dismayed and confused, taking in the words of the leaders and the culture of their day, thinking them to be true – never considering it could be the polar opposite to the will of God. As a result of the dismay and confusion, the people begin to ask, "What does God know? Does the Most High even know what's happening?" All the earthly attacks on the truth we see taking place have the image, nature, and sovereignty of God as their target.

Then Asaph asks an honest question that carries profound consequences, if we are brave enough to ask it: "Did I keep my heart pure for nothing? Did I keep myself innocent for no reason? I get nothing but trouble all day long; every morning brings me pain" (verses 13-14). Unless such negative reasoning is interrupted and corrected by the knowledge of God and His faithfulness, we could betray our faith in Him.

Asaph continued: "If I had really spoken this way to others, I would have been a traitor to your people" (verse 15). The word "traitor" is being tossed about with increasing frequency as our nation continues to devolve into deeper expressions of darkness. There is a form of "traitor" that is worse than betraying a nation. It is the betrayal of our hope in God.

This year, never forget that God is at work in ways we cannot yet fully understand. The shaking of what is false is necessary to redeem the nations and keep the Church focused on its mission of transformation.

How to Align with God and Recalibrate Our Faith

Asaph entered the sanctuary as a worshiper of God, inviting others to worship God with him. As he considered this assignment, he wrote the following words: "Then I went into your sanctuary, O God, and I finally understood the destiny of the wicked. Truly, You put them on a slippery path and send them sliding over the cliff to destruction. In an instant they are destroyed, completely swept away by terrors. When You arise, O Lord, You will laugh at their silly ideas as a person laughs at dreams in the morning" (verses 17-20). (Photo via Unsplash)

Worship aligns us with God when we are living in challenging times, and it reveals the attempts of Hell to delude and confuse us. The "silly ideas" Asaph referred to are being mirrored in our days. These silly ideas have horrible consequences, as they invade the thinking of our nation and, sadly, some elements within the Church. People are being asked to believe the lie of the existence of multiple genders; the ability to make a man into a woman or a woman into a man; or sitting our children before perversions while they watch dancing drag queens exposing themselves to our children to fulfill their perverted lust. These are silly ideas with the goal to turn each person and each nation into pagans, with no regard for God and His holiness.

After seeing all the displays of wickedness in his day, Asaph said, "Then I realized that my heart was bitter, and I was all torn up inside" (verse 21). To move forward as Asaph did, we need to experience a recalibration of our faith by worshiping Jesus and His majesty. Asaph offered evidence of his personal recalibration while feeling bitter and torn: "Yet I still belong to You; You hold my right hand" (verse 23).

In 2023, we will see a return to worship songs that declare the triumphant majesty of God – throne room that focuses on the power and authority of Jesus Christ. The outflow and expression of that kind of worship, and the resulting personal and corporate recalibration it brings, will become our pathway into the future.

God Will Have the Last Word

As we move into 2023, one thing is sure: God will always have the last word. Knowing that single truth will keep our hearts pure and at peace when the world and evil leaders keep attempting to take us down a dark path.

In the coming year, divine interventions by the Lord will take place, pulling down earthly thrones of authority that have been set up against the knowledge of God. Keep your eyes on the Lord, not on earthly developments. That focus will be critical in the coming year, especially during times of worship.

Asaph finished his Psalm with these words: "But as for me, how good it is to be near God! I have made the Sovereign LORD my shelter, and I will tell everyone about the wonderful things You do" (verse 28). Let that be our attitude and the confession of our mouths as we continue into 2023.

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Garris Elkins, Author and Prophetic Minister
Prophetic Horizons


Garris Elkins and his wife, Jan, are a spiritual father and mother to many, both in the United States and abroad. Garris' ministry, Prophetic Horizons, is a ministry of teaching, writing, and prophecy committed to raising up a prophetic generation to speak to the cultures of our world with the empowered voice of Heaven. Garris and Jan live in southern Oregon.

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