Communion Service on First Sunday of the month.
WORSHIP: WHY WE DO WHAT WE DO: TEN GUIDING PRINCIPLES FOR WORSHIP AT . . .
FIRST, We believe that the focus of worship from beginning to end is the Glory
of God. Because worship
SECOND, We believe that the design of worship is to lead God’s people to Christ. Thus worship is to be saturated with the gospel. It is a mistake to view worship as an evangelistic outreach for the lost. But, it is also a mistake to presume everyone present is a believer. Sinners must come to Christ to be saved. But saints must also come to Christ to grow. Worship that is Christ-centered, grace-oriented and faith-filled will be “evangelistic” for both sinner and saint. The marks of such Christ-centered worship are its simplicity and clarity.
THIRD, We believe that the Bible is a sufficient guide for worship. Thus worship is filled with Scripture
We believe that devotion in worship is enhanced by music. God’s people
are called upon the “sing to
We believe that worship on the Lord’s day is fundamentally
corporate in nature. We recognize
SIXTH, We believe that corporate worship is a dialogue between God and his people. God speaks and we respond. God always has the first and last word because his words are most important. We enter by invitation and depart with benediction. It is his Word that creates the worshiping community. Thus we begin with a call to worship from our Heavenly Father and we respond in praise and adoration. We confess our sins and God responds with the assurance of his pardoning grace. We hear his word and then respond in the giving of our gifts. He offers his body and blood and we respond in thanksgiving. We show our gratitude and depart with his final words of blessing.
SEVENTH, We believe that since worship is a dialogue between God and his people, someone must be appointed to speak in God’s behalf. By virtue of their office, this should be the ordained elders and particularly the teaching elder or pastor. Pastors are not priests in the Old Testament sense, nor do they dispense grace in the Roman Catholic sense. But they do fulfill a priestly function (Rom. 15:16). When they speak the words of God, they speak them as from God. The invitation to worship, the promise of pardon from sin, the reading and exposition of Scripture, the administration of the sacraments, and the benediction are to be received as though Christ, not the pastor, were speaking to us. On the other hand, the pastor also ministers in a “priestly” manner when he represents the people before God. He offers prayers in Jesus’ Name and unites the congregation in corporate praise.
EIGHTH, We believe that the prevailing tone of worship should be that of reverence. The Bible clearly teaches this (Hebrews 12:28-29). We do affirm the place of both joyous celebration and sober contrition when we gather to worship the Lord. Nevertheless, the Lord remains holy and righteous and our demeanor should reflect that. He is our Creator and Redeemer, not our “chum.”
NINTH, We believe that we worship best when we respect the heritage and traditions of those who have gone before us. This does not mean that there is no room for improvement or fresh creativity. Every generation must “reform” its worship according to the Scriptures. However, many today who seek to “reinvent” worship will soon find that their new tradition does not have enduring value because it is too bound to modern pop-culture. The reason that certain traditions have stood the test of time is that its Biblical rootedness has been tested by the wisdom of the ages. Our Reformed heritage should not be quickly laid aside in favor for what is new and trendy.
We believe that corporate worship requires prior preparation on the part
of the worshiper. This preparation is