Y O U N G P E O P L E ' S D I C T I O N A R Y O F S C R I P T U R A L • & • R E L I G I O U S T E R M S
Homage is in some ways, similar to the word worship. However the use of the word
homage today is very different from the word worship. Thus it is important to
understand this word’s meaning.
The French word homme means man and this is where the term homage came
from. It describes a ritual which took place many years ago, when kings ruled over
nations. Feudal lords owned large estates and submitted their wealth and power to
serving the king. On these feudal estates, peasants lived and worked for the feudal
lords and were called vassals.
To become a vassal, a peasant would present himself before the feudal lord of that
region, and pay homage to the lord. By doing this, the peasant would place himself
under the protection and authority of the lord of those lands. From that day the
peasant, now a vassal of the lord, was responsible to fully obey all that his lord
required of him. In turn, he received protection, care, and a place to live, within the
estate of his lord.
As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, we by faith own his “Lordship” in our lives. In
Romans 10:9 we read: “if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus (or
“Jesus as Lord”), thou shalt be saved”. This is paying true homage as worship by
faith to our wonderful Lord Jesus. We own Him as our “Lord” with full rights to be
the One and only authority in our lives, and He grants us eternal life, blessing and
joy, as those who belong to Him.
There is, however, an important difference between “homage” and “worship”.
Homage is paid to another who has some right of power and authority over me. I
pay homage by respecting and honoring that individual. In the world homage is
often and rightly paid to men in places of authority and dignity. But we as
Christians are never to worship a man.
We worship God alone. This is one way we show reverence for Who He is. We are
commanded not to worship any other being than our God. The Lord Jesus fully
defeated Satan when the wicked one tried to get our Lord Jesus to worship himself.
The Lord told Satan: “And Jesus answered and said unto him, Get thee behind me,
Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt
thou serve” (Luke 4:8).