WORSHIP & GATHERING

Much has been written in recent years about various “styles” of worship, i.e. “Is your church’s worship traditionalcontemporaryblended?

The Old Testament, particularly in the Psalms, makes clear (1) that the purpose of worship is not to entertain or bless the participants, but that Almighty God might be exalted, praised, and thanked, and (2) that He alone is to be the object of our worship.  Singing, shouting, playing musical instruments, even dancing are all presented in Scripture as suitable means of the worship of God.   The New Testament has nothing to say about a preferred “style” of corporate worship, but our Lord did address the issue of the object of our worship on at least two occasions.

         “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all
            your soul, and with all your mind.”
 
   
                       - Matthew 22:37

         “The hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers
           will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father is
           seeking such to worship Him.  God is Spirit, and those who
           worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.”

                      
- John 4:23-24

Therefore, while the style of corporate worship is not specified in Scripture, the object of our worship is God the Father, and the purpose of our worship is to praise and thank Him.  Following the example of the early church, we have added worship in the form of sacrament, liturgy, and song offered directly to God the Son and God the Holy Spirit.  We make use of nearly all the English translations of the Bible in our worship services, drawing inspiration and illumination from the full spectrum of centuries of Christian scholarship. 

At C.O.S. our worship style can be described as "ancient-future".  We seek to draw from the best worship traditions dating all the way back to the Psalms.  We sing contemporary praise songs as well as the classic hymns of the Christian faith.  We recite the historic Christian creeds, utilize the Revised Common Lectionary and often include liturgy from the Book of Common Prayer, as well as other worship resources from the early church.  The sacrament of Communion is ministered on the last Sunday of each month.  The sound of worship at C.O.S. is, at the present time, acoustic, and we also like to sprinkle our music with some a cappella singing.  Though it is not an “every Sunday” feature of our morning services, we do also occasionally make use of video technology as a tool for worship.

Time is set aside each Sunday for each worshiper’s preparation for worship through confession.  Above all, we seek to worship the triune God in spirit and truth, as exhorted by our Lord.  That many in the congregation are blessed by our corporate worship is seen as a work of God’s grace:  He allows us to share in His own blessing and to enjoy our privilege as a community of believer-priests to offer up to Him our sacrifices of praise and thanksgiving, soli Deo Gloria.