From a teaching series on Worship, this lesson explored the notions of Sphere Sovereignty and the limits of authority that God has placed upon certain institutions. It then explored the notion of Liberty of Conscience and how it affects our understanding of corporate Worship.
The lesson notes can be downloaded here: Christian Liberty and Liberty of Conscience
Westminster Confession of Faith, Chapter XX
Of Christian Liberty, and Liberty of Conscience
I. The liberty which Christ hath purchased for believers under the gospel consists in their freedom from the guilt of sin, the condemning wrath of God, the curse of the moral law; and, in their being delivered from this present evil world, bondage to Satan, and dominion of sin; from the evil of afflictions, the sting of death, the victory of the grave, and everlasting damnation; as also, in their free access to God, and their yielding obedience unto him, not out of slavish fear, but a childlike love and willing mind. All which were common also to believers under the law. But, under the new testament, the liberty of Christians is further enlarged, in their freedom from the yoke of the ceremonial law, to which the Jewish church was subjected; and in greater boldness of access to the throne of grace, and in fuller communications of the free Spirit of God, than believers under the law did ordinarily partake of.
The Regulative Principle of Worship (RPW) simply defined is this: Whatever God has not specifically commanded in worship is forbidden.
The Old Testament is full of either implicit or explicit condemnation of Judah and the Israelites on the basis of false worship. It is the fundamental reason for their downfall. In fact, if you read the 1st Chapter of Romans you can see that man either worships God as He is and is thankful to Him as Creator or he turns to idolatry. Idolatry leads to a “giving over” to folly, which, in turn, leads to depraved actions – a downward spiral of unrighteousness. But it all begins with false worship.
To ask “Where has God told us not to worship Him except as He has commanded?” Try Exodus and Leviticus for starters.…Read More