Our Worship

CalvlibwebThe Bible is a fully sufficient guide for worship.  This doctrine, taught in all of Scripture (Exodus 20:4-6, Leviticus 10:1-2, Deuteronomy 12:29-32, Matthew 15:19)  was proclaimed during the Protestant Reformation with the words Sola Scriptura, and has come to be known as the regulative principle.  In practical terms, it means that whatever we do as worship when we gather as God’s people must be commanded by God in the Bible, or it is forbidden.  This principle keeps us safe, for although we are saved by grace, we are still sinners.  Our hearts are still inclined toward all kinds of idolatry and ungodly worship practices.  In God’s mercy he has given us all the instructions we need for worship in the Holy Scriptures.

Although the Bible does not give us a specific order for worship, it gives us all of the elements to be used in worship.  While we must only do what God has commanded, there is some liberty for the Church in the order in which it is done.  A gospel pattern or logic has historically been utilized in the best orders of worship as God’s people gather and worship him (e. g. the Genevan liturgy, the Savoy liturgy, the Westminster Directory for Public Worship, etc.)  There are also helpful patterns in the Bible.  Isaiah chapter 6 provides a picture of this pattern as the prophet sees the LORD in his glory and mentally processes what it means for him personally to be in the presence of God.  First, the prophet sees the Lord in his glory, reflected in his temple (6:1-4).  Then, he is immediately convicted of his own sin and unworthiness, and confesses it (6:5).  From this we learn that we must meditate upon and confess our sin whenever we enter God’s presence.  Next, he receives the remission of his sin from the altar of God (6:6-7).  Then, God speaks (6:8a).  Finally, Isaiah responds in faithful obedience (6:8b).

This is our order of worship:

Call to worship

Prayer of Confession of Sin

Assurance of Pardon

The Reading of the Law

Psalm or Hymn

Scripture Readings (Old and New Testaments)

Prayer of Illumination

Sermon

Psalm or Hymn

The Apostles’ Creed

Pastoral Prayer

Psalm or Hymn

Benediction

We are currently singing Psalm and Hymn selections from the old “blue” Trinity Hymnal.

Children are always welcome in our worship service.  “And Jesus saith unto them, Yea; have ye never read, Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings thou hast perfected praise?” Matthew 21:16

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