Liturgy of Covenant Grace Church
When people hear the word liturgy, many different thoughts come to mind. Some have a negative thought because it conjures up boring and sterile memories from the past. Some have preconceived ideas that ligury in gathered worship is boring, but have never actually attended a church with a defined liturgy.
At Covenant Grace Church, we believe that a well thought through and defined liturgy benefits the people who gather together on Sunday morning. It is not the purpose of this article to explore the many benefits for the people, but rather to discuss the well thought through liturgy that we will follow each Sunday morning when we gather together.
Welcome - There are some business items that need to be communicated to the people that attend. Sometimes there are events coming up, there are visitors to inform how to get more information, and other practical items to share with those who are in attendance. As we roll into the next section, we invoke God for His assistance as our authority with a Prayer of Invocation.
Adoration/Revelation/Declaration (All are called to worship God) - God is a God who has an open invitation for everyone to worship Him, so right from the start, we want to sing songs and read Bible passages that declare who God is and stand in awe of Him together. We will sing about His holiness, grace, and many more of his amazing attributes.
Confession (All are sinners before God) - As we see God for who He is, we will then see ourselves for who we are: sinners. This levels the playing field. Christians who attend church regularly are no better than those who don’t. We are all sinners and need a Savior. We will read Bible verses that remind us of where we fall short, confess our sins to God, and then celebrate with the reading of a Bible passage that reminds and assures Christians of their pardon that is found is Jesus alone. We will then sing and praise God for the forgiveness of sin.
Proclamation (All need to hear from the Word of God) - The next section is where we hear the Word of God preached. The Bible, the 66 books found in the Old and New Testament, is our final authority. God has given us everything that we need to know from Him contained in His Word. We don’t stand above it to critique it, but rather we submit to what it tells us. One of the elders will take a Bible passage, explain it and apply it. The gospel and God’s grace will always be the focal point during the time of proclamation.
Expiation / Celebration (All must come to God for Salvation) - By grace alone, through faith alone can man be saved, and each week we will celebrate the Christian’s union with one another as a body of believers as well as union with Christ, the giver of salvation. We do this through the Lord’s Supper. As we hear from the Word of God, the Holy Spirit reveals areas in our lives where we still fall short. This is a time when we pray silently and repent of the things that should prevent us from approaching a Holy God. But we don’t stay there. We turn and celebrate that, because of Jesus’ atonement on the cross, we no longer stand condemned, but are forgiven and can boldly approach God as our loving heavenly Father! Then we sing and celebrate together.
Benediction and Commission (Christians are sent out on mission in the world) - As we close, a passage from or based on the Bible is read blessing God’s people with his grace and peace and reminding us that we go out to share the love of Jesus with a lost and dying world who desperately needs to receive the free gift of salvation only found in Jesus.
Each of these items are the result of many things that we believe. We believe that the Word of God and the gospel are the center of the Christian’s worship and our gatherings. This is why there will be so much Bible read and prayers offered. We seek to arrange our gathered worship so that God is seen for who He is, the work of Jesus is magnified, and the help of the Spirit is sought. Our worship of God is Trinitarian, meaning God is revealed in Christ through the Spirit by means of His Word.