Bless the Lord, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word,
obeying the voice of his word!
Bless the Lord, all his hosts, his ministers, who do his will!
Bless the Lord, all his works, in all places of his dominion.
Bless the Lord, O my soul!
Psalm 103:20-22 (ESV)
Worship is fundamental to our existence (Matthew 4:10) and can be defined as “rightly focusing on God and so appropriately responding to God” (Whitney). Worship is both confined (individual) and continual (Psalm 34:1; Psalm 103:1) as well as corporate (Acts 2:44ff; Heb. 10:25) and contained (Psalm 33:1-3). God is particular about how He is worshipped. It is possible to offer Him "strange fire" (Leviticus 10:1-5) and it is possible to worship in vain (Matt. 15:9); it is possible to have false worship (John 4) and it is possible to go through the external motions of worship but have hearts far from Him (Psalm 51:15-17; Amos 5:21-24; Matt. 23). God knows how He wants to be worshipped and so we will limit our worship to what is approved in Scripture (regulative principle of worship).
How Our Worship Is Guided
- Our desire is to offer God worship that is acceptable to Him (Heb. 12:27-29)
- Our desire is to worship the Godhead in spirit and in truth (Matt. 15; John 4:1-54)
- Our worship will be Word directed and Word focused; our intention is that the Word of God be central in what we sing, in our prayers, in our readings, in our preaching, and how we respond to His Word in our offerings, and in our repentance and commitment to obey (John 17:17)
- Our worship is offered in various ways during a corporate worship service; including singing (Psalm 33:1-22; Eph. 5:19), giving (Luke 21:2-3), public reading of Scriptures (Luke 4:16- 20), prayer, preaching and teaching, and the ordinances (Acts 2:40-41)
- Our worship will be Christ exalting; to worship God you must know God through Jesus Christ His Son (John 4:25-26; 1 Cor. 12:3; Romans 8:1-11)
- Our worship is to God and for God; our personal preferences are not our primary concern. (Rev. 19:10; Rev. 22:9)
How & What We Sing
- The words we sing should be true. Our desire is to be theologically correct in our praises.
- The words we sing should be a blend of psalms (Scripture), hymns and spiritual songs — old and new.
- The words we sing should be a blend of singing about God, to God, and in response to God both corporately and individually.
- The words we sing should be heard. Our desire is to be a singing church. Our focus isn't necessarily on what people like to listen to individually, but on what can be sung corporately.