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Friday, March 13, 2009
Ordering Worship: Part 3
I want to continue this conversation about worship and order. Questions abound on this issue. Why does worship need an order? Why not just open ended spontaneity? Doesn't order constrict the freedom of the Spirit? Isn't this just tradition? Where is it in the Bible? An Order of Worship is for more high formal liturgical churches isn't it; for people who have bulletins?

The bottom line:  We all operate in worship out of some kind of order. Call it what you will, written down or not, pre-planned or off-the-cuff, over time some consistent pattern will emerge.  

We've been talking about the four basic movements of worship:  God gathers a people to himself. He speaks his Word to them. They respond in covenant obedience or disobedience. (most often in a covenant meal or ceremony) God sends them out into kingdom work or exile. The four movements of this order come from the storied way God works with people.   Take a look at this chart. (click on it to enlarge)

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posted by John David Walt | at 3/13/2009 10:40:00 PM



Blogger JAy. said...

Not sure I completely agree with the table. Particularly, the "Isreal" column is a stretch in my mind.

That said, I do not disagree with the concept of Gather, Word, Response, Send. This is especially true, in my mind, if you are using the Eucharist as the "Response". You need the Gather and Word to prepare for the Eucharist, and of course you have to Send last.

Last night I read a story of a church where the worship was basically unscripted, even to the point that when it was time to sing, the congregation just called out hymn numbers and one was selected. Having been raised in a relatively high liturgical church, that concept made my skin crawl. I am not saying that it isn't authentic worship, just that I don't think I could do it.

Guess I am a pretty traditional guy, even if I like contemporary music at least on occassion.

9:48 AM EDT  

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