Spheres of Christian Worship
As a church we acknowledge the necessity of individual worship – that you and I are called as single souls to live a life of repentance and faith – and to joyfully marvel in God for saving and blessing us with every spiritual blessing in Christ (cf. Mark 1:15; Ephesians 1:3).
We also acknowledge the necessity of meeting as a local congregation to worship God each Lord’s Day as a vital means of grace for the health and encouragement of our souls (cf. Acts 2:42-47; Acts 20:7; Hebrews 10:24-25).
Far too often among American churches, however, there is a prevailing neglect of family worship. Yet this means of grace for our families is of utmost importance and is attested to in various ways throughout Scripture (cf. Genesis 18:19; Deuteronomy 4:9, 6:7, 11:18-21; Joshua 24:14-15; Psalm 71:18, 145:4; Proverbs 22:6; Isaiah 38:19; Ephesians 6:4; 1 Timothy 3:4-5, 5:8).
The great Scottish Reformer, John Knox, was fully aware of this essential, biblical teaching. He urged the heads of households to engage in regular, robust family worship:
“Within your houses, I say, in some cases, you are bishops and kings; your wife, children, servants, and family are your bishopric and charge. Of you it shall be required how carefully and diligently you have instructed them in God’s true knowledge, how you have studied to plant virtue in them, and [to] repress vice. And therefore I say, you must make them partakers in reading, exhorting, and in making common prayers, which I would in every house were used once a day at least.”1
Support for Family Worship
As a church, then, we want to do what we can to encourage and equip family worship in every household – whether the household consists of one or one dozen. To this end, we are releasing a supplement to family worship that includes two primary components: 1) a hymn of the month to sing with your family, which we will also be singing at each evening service for the duration of that month, and 2) a list of three or four ethnic groups from various nations that have been little or no evangelical witness; we will be praying for these groups at evening services over the course of the month as well. Though reading from Scripture is a chief component of family worship, we believe that it’s generally desirable for parents to pursue a reading plan for family worship that is suited to their circumstances and the needs of their children.
We are in no way pressuring or requiring families to incorporate these supplemental resources into their family worship, but are seeking to foster greater connection between family worship at home and corporate worship in our church meeting space. To this end, Family Worship Supplements will be uploaded to this blog each week. We hope that your family worship times are ever-increasing in fruitfulness and reverence for Christ.