There can be no doubt that God takes our worship of Him very seriously. Even a cursory reading of the Bible makes this abundantly clear. The whole of Leviticus, the accounts of Nadab and Abihu, Ananias and Sapphira, the pastoral epistles all confirm this. Logically this makes perfect sense, God made us, He owns and He tells us how we should approach Him. Just as there is a certain protocol when one approaches the Queen of England or the CEO of a multinational so God tells us how we should come to Him.
The Lord has given us the specific components of worship. He tells us to pray, sing corporately, read the Bible, preach the Bible, practice the sacraments of communion and baptism, and church discipline when necessary. This is why you won’t find us replacing a Lord’s Day service with a puppet show or a Passion concert.
But how are we to do everything? The Apostle Paul writes to the church at Corinth and tells them that when they gather to worship, “All things should be done decently and in order.” (1 Cor. 14:40) In the pastoral epistles, Paul’s letters to Timothy and Titus, Paul is concerned about what the world will think of the Church if she does not behave in a fitting way. Sadly, we have all seen or read about the ridicule that is heaped upon the Church when professing churches behave foolishly. Paul wants the Church, like Israel of old, to be a light to the nations. We are supposed to show through the way we worship that God is beautiful, good and true.
The biblical triumvirate of Goodness, Beauty, and Truth must be seen by those who attend a Lord’s Day service. It is for this reason that we seek to be faithful to God’s Word when it comes to the elements of our services (Goodness). In the content of our prayers, our songs and our preaching we seek to proclaim Truth. What is often forgotten in our crass age is that we should seek to do everything excellently, to God’s glory. This includes our singing, relevant eloquence in preaching and praying, and the aesthetics of our gatherings (Beauty).
As elders we are constantly looking for ways to improve every area of our worship services. Our motto is that of the Dutch Reformers, semper reformanda (always reforming). We want everyone who serves on the Lord’s Day to realise that they are not serving the elders but the Lord. As they fulfill each task with beauty, goodness and truth they are pointing people to Christ. As the Lord provides financially we will seek to make the venue as welcoming and aesthetically pleasing as possible. We desire to see more musicians helping us to worship the Lord in a beautiful, truth filled way. Paul tells Timothy, a pastor, that his progress must be seen by his congregation (1 Tim. 4:15). As pastors our preaching, wisdom, guidance, holiness should be progressing.
What an incredible privilege to be involved in the worship of the triune God. To be able to reflect back to God and out towards others the ultimate Beauty, Truth and Goodness of the Lord Jesus Christ. May the Holy Spirit help us to do it better every Sunday.
Soli Deo Gloria