Jesus stunned the Samaritan woman by saying, “The true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth” (John 4:23). When we gather as a church, we teach the truth of the Word of God, (Ephesians 4:25) and worship “in spirit” with biblical music. We are “addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with all your heart” (Ephesians 5:19). “One another” stresses the importance of the balance of priority, variety priority and unity in worship.
“Psalms” not only refers to the Old Testament book, but speaks of literally playing on a stringed instrument. With “rhythm, strings, pipes and cymbals,” utilizing melodic and rhythmic music, we “praise God in His sanctuary” (Psalm 150:1, 4, 5). “Hymns” comes from the word for celebration, while “spiritual songs” combine proclamation with adoration.
In Worship Services and Discipleship Groups, we seek to “make the best use of the time” (Ephesians 5:16) as we begin a new year. As a people’s church, we minister to all ages. As our crowds on Sunday swell, we offer a seasonal worship alternative at 11:00am. God’s hand has certainly been on the 11:00am contemporary service which has been meeting in the Worship Center, but beginning this weekend, we additionally offer a more traditional service in the Chapel with choir and orchestra.
The Lord uses gifted leaders, such as Dr. Todd Stearns and Rev. Eric Yeldell. King David knew the wisdom of delegation: “They were all under the direction of their father in the music in the house of the Lord” and utilized choirs and praise bands who were, “trained in singing to the Lord, all who are skillful” (1 Chronicles 25:6, 7). Of course, “let everything that has breath praise the Lord” (Psalm 150:6).
We will do a preaching rotation at 11:00am with me preaching every other week, in either the Chapel or Worship Center at that hour, and one of our gifted pastors helping in the other service. They will utilize the same text and themes with access to my notes and study, but interject their own insights. While folks tend to prefer “face-to-face” preaching, at times I may need to communicate to the whole church the same message at the same time via our media.
On Sunday evening this weekend, the church is invited to the Deacon Ordination Service of some wonderful new men. They have been prayerfully interviewed and affirmed. We trust them to “serve well as deacons and gain a good standing for themselves and great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 3:13). Pray for our new chairman, Terry Cole, and vice chairman, Keith Langham. Thank you, Philip Nemni and Ricky Garcia for your fine service.