For the last two thousand years, Christians have gathered all across the world on Sunday morning to celebrate and declare their faith in the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. We join them in this celebration every Sunday morning at 10:30 a.m. Here is a brief explanation of what this looks like for our worship gathering every Sunday.
What is Worship?
All people worship, but not all people worship alike. To worship means to declare ultimate worth to someone or something. This means some worship material things, such as money, cars, houses, or people. Others worship immaterial things like power, control, or pleasure. These things, however, do not hold the worth because they are temporal and fallible. The one thing, or we should say the only One, worthy of worship is the Triune God revealed in the Bible. Only He is worthy of worship and He cares deeply about how He is worshiped not only in the private setting of our individual lives but the corporate setting of the gathered church. Since the Bible gives specific instructions with the freedom to express worship in different ways, we want to share with you how and why we worship the way we do in our corporate gathering on Sunday mornings.
How We Worship
Every church is different when it comes to music style, arrangement, time, translation of Bible used (we use ESV), and decoration. While many churches are different, some elements remain the same. Here is how we order our service and it comes inspired by the experience of the prophet Isaiah in Isaiah 6.
Call to Worship
Our worship gathering begins with a brief reminder of why we are gathered. A portion of Scripture is read (usually from the book of Psalms) and the congregation reads a portion of the passage together out loud.
Song of Adoration
The first song is meant to fix our focus on the Lord, His character, His glory, and His awesomeness. So much of our time is spent looking at ourselves when what we need is a gaze at the Lord.
Prayer of Confession
The natural response to looking at the Lord is to see one’s sin. We realize how much we are not like Him. We spend time privately and publicly confessing our sin through prayer, being led by our worship leader.
Song of Atonement
It would not be wise to end just with the confession of sin. We also confess our Savior, Jesus Christ, who died to pay the penalty for our sin, to deliver us from the wrath of God, and to give us eternal life. We sing a song that focuses on the death of Jesus Christ as our only hope of atonement before God.
Song of Assurance
Following the song of atonement is the song of assurance where we sing of our confidence in what Jesus Christ has done for us on the cross. It is finished!
The majority of our time spent together is in this element, the preaching of the Word. A pastor will lead us in this time, which is typically through books or passages of the Bible. Expository preaching is the method of our proclamation. Sermons vary from 35-55 minutes depending on the passage.
Response to the Word
God’s Word never returns void and it always demands a response. We spend time responding to God’s word through prayer and praise. We challenge everyone from the preacher to our first time guests to spend time reflecting and responding to God’s Word. Sometimes this means taking the Lord’s Supper together and other times this means following in baptism. After a time of prayer, we invite everyone to stand and sing.
Song of Action
In response to our response, we sing a song that is a call to action. Not just to hear the Word, but to do the Word.
Response through Giving
This is an opportunity for us to express our thanks to the Lord for His provision and to faithfully support the ministries of our church family. There are several ways to give and we always challenge everyone to give according to God’s faithfulness to give to you.
Events for Mission
We don’t call them announcements. Everything we do is intentional towards our mission to make disciples. Everything from Bible studies to church picnics is about the advancement of the Gospel and the enjoyment of the implications.
Benediction and Pastoral Prayer
Our pastors pray over our church family as we are reminded the worship does not end once we depart. God has called us to a great mission taking the gospel into our homes, our workplaces, our schools, and our neighborhoods. As soon as we leave, the mission begins.