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Liturgy is for the Purpose of Discipleship

I would get freaked out by the term liturgy. I thought that anything liturgical would be dry, boring, and dull. More than that, in some of the circles that I have traversed, you say "liturgy" and they respond with "dead". But, when you dive into the definition of the word, you discover every church has a liturgy one way or another.

Liturgy is simply a regular public patterned practice of a group of people in worship. Say that five times fast!

Every church has a liturgy. We all have a pattern when we get together. Often in evangelical churches, we have music and then we have preaching. That's a pattern.

What's the purpose of the pattern in a worship service? Why is your worship service patterned the way it is? At the core of the patterns in the Old and New Testament as well as throughout church history, is a desire for folks who participate in the liturgy (see definition above) to be formed holistically and spiritually. It's for the disciple to experience wholeness or Shalom for the glory of Christ.

Our pattern at Riverstone Church is for the purpose of spiritual formation and discipleship. There is an intentional pattern in our worship framed around the story of the gospel. Our songs, prayers, creeds, confession, Scripture reading, and preaching is framed around the story of God and retelling it to each other in worship. Simply put, we follow the pattern outlined in 'The Lord's Prayer'.

And then, we are to carry this pattern over in the spiritual disciplines that we practice throughout the week. This is offering a life in worship to Christ.

I am in much debt to the theologian on worship, Robert Webber. These concepts are mulled over as I think on his 'Ancient-Future' series of works. You should check them out. They will be referred to much on this blog!

Here is a link to a book I love on this subject. Yes - I am an amazon affiliate and am eligible for commission on valid purchases through this link below.

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