Our WorshipWhatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it. Deuteronomy 12:32
Come Before His Presence
Worship the Most High God
Here at Grace and Truth we place a high priority on the worship of the true and living God. This is ultimately what we were made for and it is what we will continue to do throughout all of eternity. In some ways, worship even takes a priority over our salvation. For salvation is not the goal, but rather the means to a more ultimate end, which is the true and spiritual worship of the triune God: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Worship is to be Scripturally based, spiritual, and simple. Only that which God has prescribed in the Bible ought to take place in the service of worship. Concerning the regulation of worship in the Old Testament, God said in Deuteronomy 12:32, “Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it.” Although the way we worship God has changed in the New Testament era, the principle of worshiping Him only in the way that He has revealed in His Word remains the same, for He is “the same, yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).
In fact, Christ echoed those words of Deuteronomy when He gave His Great Commission to His apostles, and by extension, to the entire Christian Church as well, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:19-20).
Interestingly, what we find is that there is nothing all that new about worship after the coming of Christ. Under the Old Testament era there was the preaching and teaching of the Word (mostly from the prophets), the public reading of the Scriptures, prayer, and praise, just like there is now under the New. The real change that took place was the removal of the ceremonialism of the Old Testament: animal sacrfice, temple worship, the festal calendar, etc. And so the worship instituted by Christ and the apostles, although much more simple, is essentially the same. God has always wanted to be worshiped “in Spirit and in truth,” i.e. from a heart that is right before God (by the work of the Spirit), and in accordance with His revealed will. Anything more than this falls into the error of the Pharisees in Jesus’ day who were rebuked by Christ when He said of them, “in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men” (Matthew 15:9).
So at Grace and Truth you really won’t find anything other in our service of worship than simply what God has revealed for us to do in His Word. In that sense, it is truly apostolic in nature. Below is an example of our order of worship. Something along these lines is what you will find if you decide to stop by for a visit:
Come Before His Presence
Order of Worship
Call to Worship: Exodus 15:2
Singing of God’s Word: Psalm 1A*
Prayer of Invocation
Old Testament Reading: Psalm 51:1-19
Meditation on Psalm 51
Singing of God’s Word: Psalm 51A*
New Testament Reading: John 8:1-11
Singing of God’s Word: Psalm 51B*
Prayer of Confession, Intercession, and Illumination
Preaching of God’s Word: Exodus 20:3
“No Other Gods Before Me”
Prayer of Thanksgiving
Singing of God’s Word: Psalm 19B*
* Congregation Standing
If it be inquired, then, by what things chiefly the Christian religion has a standard existence amongst us, and maintains its truth, it will be found that the following two not only occupy the principal place, but comprehend under them all other parts, consequently the whole substance of Christianity, viz., a knowledge, first, of the mode in which God is duly worshiped; and, secondly, of the source from which salvation is to be obtained. When these are kept out of view, though we may glory in the name of Christians, our profession is empty and vain.