Values For Corporate Worship, pt.4

Values For Corporate Worship, pt.4 October 13, 2014

What arethe values that unite us in our corporate worship? For what are we aiming whenwe gather together on Sunday morning?

For thelast several weeks, I’ve been answering these questions, one value at a time.So far, I’ve explained that we want our worship gatherings to be God-centered,cross-centered, and Scripture saturated.

Our fourthvalue for corporate worship is congregational participation. We want our peopleto be involved in the service as much as possible—singing, praying, readingScripture, actively listening, giving, serving, and more. There are severalreasons we pursue this goal. First, we believe the New Covenant spreads out thepriesthood to include all of God’s redeemed people. Through Christ, everyredeemed man and woman is a priest before God with full access to His presenceand full authority to bring their offerings directly to Him. So when we gatherfor worship, all the priests should be involved!

Second, webelieve worship is something we do—that is, primarily a verb instead of a noun.Unfortunately, the self-centered, consumeristic, entertainment-driven societyin which we live predisposes our own hearts toward getting not giving,evaluating not participating, and using not producing.

Third, webelieve corporate worship offers a setting where certain aspects of God’scharacter and certain facets of the Christian life can be most fullyexperienced.

Practically,this value we place on congregational participation means:

  • We invite thewhole assembly to participate actively in each part of the meeting, givingexpression to our belief in the priesthood of all believers.
  • We involve as manyof our members as possible in simple expressions of leadership in the meeting,recognizing no hierarchy of function within the New Covenant community.
  • We makecongregational worship elements the norm rather than individual ones,endeavoring to counteract our culturally furnished appetite for entertainment.