It has been a while, but I wanted to get back to our series on Cornerstone’s Liturgy or Order of Worship. Back in June, I wrote about the Praise and Adoration portion of our worship service. Continuing in our series, I want to now address the Scripture Reading portion of our service. In our order of worship, we pause after two hymns of praise and adoration to read God’s Word publicly.
We have this time of the public reading of the Bible for a couple of reasons. One, we are instructed to do so in Scripture. Paul gives this instruction to the young elder Timothy, “Until I come, devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching.” (1 Timothy 4:13 ESV) As obedient followers of Christ, we want to honor our Lord by reading the Word of life together so that we may know God’s will and His truth for our lives.
Another reason that we have this portion in our service for Scripture reading is to read other passages in the Bible that complement the sermon text. The ancient rule of faith is to interpret Scripture with Scripture and this public reading is a way that we can look at other places in the Bible that shed light on the sermon text. Additionally, it is hard for a preacher to read and include all the biblical truth that he would like in the sermon and so this portion of the service gives us an opportunity to meditate on God’s Word that will help us listen to and apply the sermon.
Finally, another reason we have the Scripture Reading at this point in the service is to provide a natural break in the service. After singing two hymns, this allows time for our musicians to transition, to give our voices a break, and to give us an opportunity to praise God by the reading of the Word and prepare to sing one more hymn before we are seated.
Another important element that we have added this past year is a response to the reading of God’s Word. Most of the time, one of our pastors is leading the Scripture Reading and then an opportunity is given to us to respond. The pastor states, “This is the Word of the Lord” affirming these are not man’s ideas we are reading but God’s holy, inerrant Word. We then have the opportunity to respond, “Thanks be to God.” What better way to respond to God’s gracious instruction to us than with thanksgiving!
Looking forward to worship with you this Sunday!
by His grace and to His praise,
|Preparation for Worship – September 1, 2019|
|This Sunday’s sermon: “The Preeminence of Christ: Gospel Fruit” Colossians 1:1-8|
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In preparation for the sermon: “Hope’ in Paul’s vocabulary has to do with the ultimate future; it is that confident assurance and expectancy of the vaster blessings in store for believers in the life of the world to come.” – R. C. Lucas
Hymn of the week: He Will Hold Me Fast
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