This is the first of a series discussing the nature of the church’s liturgy. May the reflections in this series help us all engage in the liturgy more fruitfully, for the glory of God, for our edification, and for the well-being of the world.
One of the most important ways to understand and appreciate our divine service better is to ask ourselves the very important question: for whose sake do we worship? Several answers could be given to this question, some which come more readily to mind than others.
- We worship for our own sake – to be forgiven, taught, nourished, and blessed through the means of grace.
- We worship for our congregation’s sake – to support our brothers and sisters in Christ in their worship.
- We also worship for the sake of visitors, inquirers and those searching for faith.
- Importantly, we worship for the sake of the world – by our prayer, praise and proclamation we serve the community and world around us in seen and unseen ways.
- Ultimately, we worship for God’s sake – to give him the glory he is worthy of, to “keep his name holy”, and to “sanctify the Sabbath”.
All these aspects are part of the “why” of worship. You can see then that the “agenda” of worship is very broad, since we worship not only for our own sake, but for our fellow believers, for the community and world, and for the sake of God’s honour and glory.
Question: For whose sake are you worshiping today?
A series of studies on the Liturgy – Linards Jansons