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What Should Worship Look Like? 3 Questions to Ask When Planning a Worship Service

We serve a God who is worthy of worship and praise, and we must wisely consider three factors in planning worship.
What Should Worship Look Like? 3 Questions to Ask When Planning a Worship ServiceAni's Photography / flickr

I've always loved worship.

As a failed worship leader (every church planter has to play guitar, right?), I found worship both meaningful and powerful. Some of those times are when I am by myself—worship dominates my personal prayer time. ...

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Displaying 1–5 of 9 comments.

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Ron Hanson

February 05, 2014  10:13am

Many aspects of this blog are dead on, but it seems to have a hidden agenda, as well, with statements like “culturally appropriate” and “unique taste”. However, one aspect of worship that seems to be missing is excellence. I fail to see how the removal of music notation and punctuation (for two) displays excellence. Rote can portray excellence, but rote alone is laziness. Also, in my circles, “Christians listen to, enjoy, and are edified by all types of music” is an inaccurate statement. It would be more preferable to relax and apply Phil 4:8, but our “unique taste” will most likely prevent that.

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Rick Dalbey

February 04, 2014  3:58pm

Alan, perhaps the liturgy and the eucharist are not mentioned is because they are not essential. They are not mentioned in the order of the service in 1st Corinthians 14 where Paul is quite explicit. “When you assemble, each one has a psalm, has a teaching, has a revelation, has a tongue, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification. If anyone speaks in a tongue, it should be by two or at the most three, and each in turn, and one must interpret; but if there is no interpreter, he must keep silent in the church; and let him speak to himself and to God. Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others pass judgment.” No priest, no eucharist, no liturgy. Communion is a shared meal of remembrance as it was with Jesus and the disciples. Like the early church, Baptists (the largest denomination in America), Assembly of God, Foursquare, Nazarene, Church of God in Christ, none follow a liturgy or eucharist. NT worship is direct, heart felt and expressed to God, not scripted


February 04, 2014  2:39pm

Christian worship is about setting God--Father, Son, and Holy Spirit--in the place of highest worth in our lives and thus dethroning any idols threatening to claim that spot. It is also about spending time relating to God, his inspired word, and his covenant people,...bringing our prayers before God and committing ourselves to answering his calling. It is right that we thoughtfully order the service so that these needs can be met. I agree with those who emphasize the Lord's Supper; In fairness to Ed Stetzer, I believe he included this under the term ordinances--which is Baptistese for the Lord's Supper and baptism. In terms of music, I think that it is important that its words and sounds be designed to serve the worship purposes of the church. I am not talking so much about the style of music as about the message and tone of the words and music. Are they suitable for their purpose? Do they further the purpose of magnifying God and transforming and empowering God's people?

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Alan Beagley

February 04, 2014  12:15pm

1. The one essential part of worship for the early church is not mentioned at all (unless it is relegated to the "etc."): the Eucharist/Lord's Supper. 2. I was recently reminded that one of our professors had told us that "the liturgy" (the prescribed structure for services) "protects the congregation from the minister"; perhaps that should now be expanded to say that the liturgy also "protects the congregation from "worship committees/leaders," and from 'creative worship.'" 3. We should keep in mind that "church services" are primarily for God and for the people of God to worship Father, Son and Holy Spirit, "the life-giving Trinity," and, having worshiped and having been fed at his Table, to go out to evangelize by word and deed. They are not *for* the unbelievers, but unbelievers who show up may (we hope and pray) realize the greatness of God and be converted.

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Kyle King

February 04, 2014  12:07pm

Create Space for--- Repentence & Confession///Singing Praises///Apostles Teaching & the Word///Prayers for the world and those in need, Almsgiving & Tithes///Adoration & The Eucharist///Doxology-- Sent Out as Agents of the Kingdom/// If all of these areas are led by the Spirit and a sound mind, worship should be transformative and touch on all important areas-- personal sin confessed, thanksgiving to God given, the poor remembered and served, the sacrifice of Christ remembered, offered and received.

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