Worship: Excerpts from Everett Ferguson

Ferguson, Everett. Church of Christ. Baker, pp. 207ff

Jesus set the pattern for rejecting any object of worship other than God (Matt. 4:10, quoting Dt. 6:13; 10:20). He taught the proper nature of worship (John 4:24). He rejected worship (Matt. 19)
How does salvation in Christ express itself in the activity of the church? Three things: (1) with reference to God, worship; (2) with reference to other humans in the church, fellowship/work/ministry; (3) with reference to other humans outside the church, work/ministry; (4) with reference to the individual, life.
These obviously overlap into secondary areas. For example, worship involves God, others, and self. Work and ministry involves God and self. But the suggested approach provides an outline with primary consideration. Another way of saying this is that activities of the church are both horizontal and vertical. One might add to the horizontal plane, both internal and external.
Thus, worship has a significant horizontal importance in relationship with other worshipers as well as a vertical relationship to God who is the object of worship. The work and ministry of the church is directed toward both fellow believers and to unbelievers, but is also a service to God. The new life we live in Christ as an ethical result of our commitment to follow him is personal, but is also social, including fellowship with other believers and a testimony or witness which shares the good news with unbelievers.

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Last updated March 21, 2001.