Corporate Worship Philosophy at CCD

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1 ! Intrductin Crprate Wrship Philsphy at CCD We were created t wrship. This is clear frm the beginning f the Bible t its end. The primary Old Testament wrd fr wrship has a dual meaning t serve and t wrship telling us that the tw g tgether. Adam was created t wrship/serve Gd in the Garden. His vcatin was priestly! There was nthing that Adam did that was nt wrship. The apstle Paul says as much fr the Christian in Rmans Thus, wrship is a 24/7 prpsitin. Having said this, when Gd's peple cme tgether as a lcal church bdy, particularly n the Lrd's Day, we cme t wrship crprately. T wrship in this case is 1) t " prclaim the excellencies f him wh called yu ut f darkness int his marvelus light" in wrd, sng and prayer, 2) t celebrate the rdinance f the Lrd's Supper, 3) t hear frm Gd and encurage and exhrt each ther t faith and bedience, and 4) when necessary, t exercise church discipline. The cntent f what fllws cncerns ur crprate wrship philsphy.! General Principles We desire ur wrship t be Gd-centered We see all the cmpnent parts f the wrship service as wrship We believe that wrship has internal and external aspects t it The Cmpnents f the wrship service: The Order f Service The apstle Paul exhrted the Crinthian church t, "Let all things be dne prperly and in an rderly manner". He was speaking abut their crprate wrship services. While he did nt prescribe t them (r anywhere else in his New Testament letters) any particular rder, he did prvide a principle fr us t fllw. The early church's crprate wrship fllwed the pattern f the synaggue frm which it was birthed. This included prayer, singing, the public reading f Scripture, and a message, i.e. sermn. What fllws is CCD's rder f service, including a ratinale fr each cmpnent part with the hpes f making yur entire crprate wrship experience at CCD mre meaningful. Prelude The prelude is intended t transitin ur minds frm the cncerns f the wrld and everyday life. It is a call fr Gd's peple t fcus n the great bject f ur wrship, Gd ur Father, thrugh Jesus Christ ur Mediatr, in the pwer f the Hly Spirit ur Sanctifier. It is a summns t prepare ur hearts and minds t readily engage in every aspect f the wrship service. Welcme and Annuncements (W&A) The welcme and annuncements tell us abut events and circumstances surrunding the life f ur bdy. In essence, they remind us f ur life tgether in Christ. It is ur intentin t limit relatively superfluus infrmatin in the W&A; the bulletin bard serves that purpse.

2 Affirmatin f Histric Creed In an attempt t recgnize ur place in church histry that we are nt an island unt urselves we affirm ne f the majr creeds tgether as a lcal bdy. It als serves the purpse f ur testifying t what Christians dwn thrugh the centuries have always believed, what cnstitutes Christianity at its cre. Opening Prayer This prayer is intended t be an invcatin. In it we are asking Gd t manifest his glrius presence in ur midst thrugh the Hly Spirit. Frm a heavenly perspective, we are asking him t pen ur eyes t the reality f ur presence with "the festal gathering" f the heavenly Jerusalem (cf. Hb 12.22f). Music Set The music set serves the primary purpse f preparing us t hear Gd thrugh His wrd in the sermn. The sngs are purpsefully and thughtfully selected accrding t the theme f the passage t be preached. The rle f music in wrship is addressed further belw. Pastral Prayer Prayer is an integral part f wrship. It expresses ur dependence n Gd and is truly an expressin f faith. As in persnal prayer we address Gd as ur Father, asserting his greatness in his persn and purpses fllwed by ur requests, s the pastral prayer is an pprtunity t d s crprately. Arguably, the Lrd's Prayer is a crprate prayer, "Our Father..." Offertry As an act f wrship we present ur mnetary fferings t the Lrd. They are given cheerfully fr tw reasns. The first is in respnse t his tender mercies shwn t us in ur salvatin. The secnd is in respnse t his cmmand. As a lcal bdy f believers, we are bligated t participate tgether in the gspel enterprise. This participatin requires funding which the ffertry accmplishes. Scripture Reading Paul exhrted Timthy t give attentin t the public reading f Scripture. At the heart f wrship is hearing Gd speak and shwing ur faith in him by yielding urselves t what he says. This is the reasn why the Scripture reader says, "This is Gd's wrd". The expected respnse is "Amen". Message In additin t what was just said, we believe that the preached wrd is authritative s lng as it accurately reflects the wrd f Gd. Therefre ur apprach t preaching is expsitry by nature. Gd's self-revelatin is the basis f all wrship. Clsing Sng

3 The clsing sng supplies the crprate "amen" t Gd's wrd. Therefre, the clsing sng is especially selected t reflect the theme f the passage just preached. In singing the sng tgether, we prfess with ne vice that we d in fact agree and accept what Gd has just tld us in his wrd. Clsing Prayer and Benedictin This nt nly serves the practical rle f signaling the end f the wrship service, it actually requests f Gd that he bless his peple accrding t his prmises a request with which a faithful Gd will nt but cmply. Pstlude Just as the service began with cntemplatin in anticipatin f meeting with Gd, the pstlude prvides an pprtunity t reflect n having met with Gd. It is desirable fr thse participating in the wrship service t remain seated fr the first prtin f the pstlude fr this purpse. The rder f service just utlined abve is, as stated earlier, based n principle and is nt prescribed by Scripture. Therefre, it can and will be mdified frm time t time t prvide freshness and avid the danger f falling int wden traditinalism. The rle f Music in Crprate wrship Music is ne f Gd's grandest gifts given t man. It is a pwerful means f expressing ur adratin t Gd. It can als be a means f great cntrversy in the church. Thus, we want t use this Gd given gift in a manner that edifies the saints and nt in manner that divides them. The basis fr selecting music at CCD is, in large measure, thematic based n the rder f service. Our prelude music is selected in accrdance with an invcatin. Our ffertry selectin has t d with thanksgiving r ther aspects f giving in a sacrificial manner. Our music set and clsing sng reflect the theme f that particular mrning's passage. The suitability f any given sng is thus determined by the cntent f the sng. This means that the categries f cntemprary and traditinal are nt particularly useful as selectin criteria at CCD (see mre belw n this issue f music selectin). We recgnize that many cme n Sunday mrnings with preferences fr a certain music style and even instrumentatin. The Western church is a diverse grup (in terms f nn-essentials) and is becming mre diverse all the time. At CCD, ur expectatin and hpe is that as we cntinue t mature as a cngregatin and as individuals, we will, in the spirit f lve, be willing t give preference t thers in this matter f music selectin. Fr instance, if the type f music and/r the manner in which it is sung is nt appealing t smene's persnal tastes, we wuld like t see that persn cnsider a cuple f things: First, hw the sng glrifies the Lrd by reflecting especially the theme f the passage being preached, and secnd, that ther brthers and sisters in the bdy might actually enjy the way the sng is being sung. After all, the wrship service is a crprate service and shuld nt be viewed, at least primarily, as a persnal wrship experience. This last statement als applies t hw we express urselves in wrship. One f ur cre principles stated abve is that wrship has internal and external aspects t it. Gd has given

4 each f us distinct persnalities thrugh which we manifest ur adratin t Gd in respnse t His truths and presence. Sme f us are mre subdued while thers are mre animated. T negtiate this cntinuum in ur wrship services, ur expectatin is, nce again, that each f us wuld understand urselves t be part f a wrshipping cmmunity. This means that we ught t shw ur adratin t Gd in a manner that edifies the bdy and nt in a manner that either draws attentin t ne's self r therwise distracts the cngregatin frm its wrship. Because f ur thematic apprach and ur desire fr grwing in Christian maturity, the cnclusin shuld nt be drawn that we d nt prescribe specific parameters in selecting music. Our baseline criteria, aside frm being thematic, are as fllws: True By true, we mean the sng must be true t the Scriptures. D the lyrics reflect the truth f Gd's wrd? Related t this is nt merely whether a sng qutes frm Gd's wrd, but hw well the sng, in a sense, preaches thse wrds (which requires thelgical depth). In ther wrds, the sng must be true bth quantifiably and qualitatively. Clear The sng must be clear t thse wh are singing it. The terms and images f the sng must cnvey an verall singular message that the peple singing it can readily understand and assent t. This may require that ur musicians, at times, explain certain phrases r images befrehand. Sing-able Fr a cngregatin t wrship tgether, it must be able t sing tgether. Sme sngs were designed t be sung either by accmplished singers r by chirs. These types f sngs limit wh is able t actively participate in this part f the wrship service. When these types f sngs are sung, it wuld be apprpriate fr the wrship team t sing them sl r t again teach the cngregatin hw t sing them musically. A mre thrugh descriptin f criteria is fund in the Sng Evaluatin Standards statement. The Senir Pastr, the Pastr f Wrship, r whmever the Senir Pastr may designate will be respnsible fr either selecting r apprving the sngs fr Sunday services. Criteria fr regular participatin in the crprate wrship ministry at CCD Participants must be partners at CCD (r a child f a partner) Participants must be abve reprach Having a gd reputatin inside and utside the church Be in agreement with CCD's wrship philsphy Nt be divisive, but ne wh seeks unity

5 Additinally, participants in the music ministry must... Be accmplished musically at least t the pint f cntributing t and nt distracting frm the wrship service Be ld enugh/mature enugh t interact at an adult level In shrt, we desire fr anyne serving in the upfrnt ministry t be characterized by humility and nt self-prmtin. When this persn serves up frnt, he r she must fade t the backgrund drawing the cngregatin's attentin t the Lrd and his excellencies.

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