Every few weeks I like to share an example of one of our worship services from Grace Fellowship Church. I hope it serves as simply one model of how we can worship the Lord in a distinctly biblical way.
This service’s cast of characters included Steve as our service leader, Brian as our lead worshipper, Murray as the elder who read the Scripture text and prayed, and Paul as the preacher. Our band consisted of two guitars, cajon, and piano accompanying one female vocalist. The various elements of the service are in bold with the name of the person who led the element in parentheses. Items in quotes or blockquotes represent roughly what the person said to the congregation. Items not in quotes are explanatory. The entire service takes approximately 90 minutes.
Welcome & Call to Worship (Steve)
Steve began the service with a welcome which included a special prayer since a little girl whose family attends our church had just begun a heart-transplant surgery. (By the start of our evening service we were able to thank God that her new heart had begun to beat.)
- “O Come All Ye Faithful”
Opposite Text Reading & Prayer of Confession (Steve)
Steve read from Matthew 1:18-21 then led us in a corporate prayer of confession adapted from Daniel 9. He said,
Matthew wrote: ‘He will save his people from their sins.’ This is our biggest problem in life. Our sins. And while Christ has taken the eternal punishment for our sins on Himself on His cross, as Christians we must deal with the relational rupture our sins create with God in real time. Christian, pray along in your heart with me, as I read this prayer of confession from the Old Testament.
O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments. We have sinned and done wrong, we have acted wickedly and rebelled, turning aside from your commandments and rules. We have not listened to your Word. To you, O Lord, belongs righteousness, but to us open shame…because we have sinned against you. To you, O Lord our God, belong mercy and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against You and have not obeyed Your voice by walking in Your commandments. O Lord, according to all your righteous acts, let your anger and your wrath turn away from us. For your own sake, O Lord, make your face to shine upon us. O our God, incline your ear and hear. Open your eyes and see our brokenness and shame. For we do not present our pleas before you because of our righteousness, but because of your great mercy. O Lord, hear; O Lord, forgive. O Lord, pay attention and act. Delay not, for your own sake, O God, because we, your people, are called by your name. Amen.
- “O Come O Come Emmanuel” (We sang the variation from Sovereign Grace Music)
Pastoral Prayer (Murray)
Murray led the pastoral prayer. He prayed for a number of matters related to the life and health of our church.
Scripture Reading (Murray)
“Please take your Bible and turn to Revelation chapter 5. That will be on page 1030 if you are using one of our church Bibles.”
He began the reading with “This is what Holy Scripture says…” and ended it with “This is the word of the Lord” to which the congregation replied, “Thanks be to God.”
- “Come Behold The Wondrous Mystery”
Paul preached a message titled, “Jesus Reigns From Heaven” based on Revelation 5:1–5:14.
- “Jesus Shall Reign”
Lord’s Supper (Steve)
We celebrated the Lord’s Supper. We essentially have two variations of Lord’s Supper, one of which is fairly brisk and one of which is much longer. This was the brisk variation which is typically for a morning service. The longer variation is more typical for our evening services.
- “It Is Well with My Soul”
Steve commissioned the church to live out the truths we heard in the service and especially in the sermon. This served as a bridge to tell about some of the events and opportunities coming up in the week(s) ahead.
“Receive this blessing of the Lord from His Word: ‘The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.’ AMEN.”