When we gather to worship God, we do so as His covenantal people. God has bound us to Himself through the saving work of His Son. The Bible attests to this covenant and can be seen as a continual dialogue between God and His covenant people. God speaks and His children respond. It is out of this principle that we structure our worship service as a conversation of sorts. Below, you’ll see each element in our worship services—its meaning, purpose, and place in the conversation.
Orland Park CRC worship exists to further the Gospel of Jesus Christ through song and word in our Sunday services.
Each week we tell the gospel—salvation by grace, through faith in Jesus Christ—through the liturgical elements of our service. We do this for the glory of God the Father and the nourishment of His people, through the power of the Holy Spirit. We desire that through each service, those present are drawn into a deeper understanding of who God is and thus who we are.
Greeting From God: To begin our service, we are greeted and blessed by God through the pastor. God brings us into fellowship in worship and is always the one to start the conversation. This reminds us that God is the initiator of our relationship with Him.
Call to Worship: This is a call from the worship leader to come and worship God, for he is worthy of our praise. Often in the form of a scripture passage or proclamation, the Call to Worship declares God’s glory, His majesty, and His sovereignty over the earth.
Songs of Response: These songs are the first opportunity for God’s covenantal people to respond. God has spoken, He has blessed us, and we have heard of His glory, His majesty, and His sovereignty. Now we can respond with thankfulness and adoration by singing together.
Confession of Sins: God’s glory makes us sense our own unworthiness before Him. When we grasp the perfection of God, we realize that we are, in fact, imperfect beings. We fall short of the glory of God. Scripture says, “the heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick,” thus we are called to confess our sins before him—both collectively and individually.
Assurance of Pardon: The Assurance of Pardon announces God’s forgiveness. Through the saving work of Jesus Christ, we receive pardon from sin. Even more, we are new creations, adopted into God’s family and “sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it to the praise of his glory (Eph. 1:13-14)."
Offering: God has forgiven us and made us His children, not due to any personal merit, but because of His great love. The offering reminds us that nothing we have is our own. “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it (Ps. 24;1)." "For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich (2 Cor. 8:9)." We give because He gave.
Prayers: God in His goodness hears our prayers. We bring our thanks and our requests to God as a community often in the form of a congregational prayer, given by a pastor.
Sermon: The minister brings a message to the congregation for the glory of the Father and by the power of the Holy Spirit. The message explains what the Scripture says and how the Scripture reveals Jesus Christ and His saving work. The message also expresses why this matters to the congregation. It is by hearing the Gospel that people are saved and how God’s people deepen their faith.
Benediction: The Benediction reminds us of God’s grace, and that His favor rests on us because of the saving work of Jesus.
Song of Sending: With a fuller understanding of and thankfulness for the Gospel, we go out in song, ready to live our lives as a response to the Gospel.