Formed By What?

We all have habit and routines that shape us. As my beloved Adventures in Odyssey taught me: addictions can be habit forming. The same is true of our weekly worship services. Whether we like to admit it or not, our corporate gatherings are times that shape our view of God. This means we need to think through the songs we sing, the architecture and decor of the church and even the use of the Bible in the services. Everything we do affects our view of God, either positively or negatively.

Bryan Chappell in his book Christ Centered Worship argues that throughout history, the church has followed a gospel centered liturgy. That means that our worship services from the flow to the language used in the service should lead us through the gospel message each and every week. In the book, he lists several components that comprise a gospel centered service:

  1. Calls
  2. Prayers
  3. Scripture Readings
  4. Music
  5. Offerings
  6. Creeds and Affirmations
  7. Benedictions and Charges
  8. Rubrics
  9. Sermon
  10. Sacraments
  11. Expressions of Fellowship
  12. Testimonies
  13. Oaths
  14. Ordinations and Commissionings
  15. Church Discipline
  16. Fasting
  17. Other?

All of these will not take place every time we gather, but should be regular parts of our worship. Which of these do you see taking place regularly, and which ones do you not see? How are some ways you think the church could grow in their reminders of the gospel routine? How can you personally better grow in your re-telling of the gospel in your own life?

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