Thursday, November 12, 2009

Reformed Worship

In part, Reformed worship comes from an Augustinian understanding of salvation and God's irresistible grace. Left to ourselves, Augustine believed that humans do not possess the moral capacity to willingly and freely seek after God. Our natural inclination is to see after what we find pleasing in our own eyes. We accept this portrayal of our condition as accurate and biblical. We were without God and hope in this world, but now through Christ Jesus, we who were once far off, have been brought near through the blood of Jesus Ephesians 2: 12-13. Furthermore, the hallmark of Reformed worship is the appeal to the authority of the bible over Church tradition. Ultimately, we worship not for mutual edification but to give glory to God. Worship, in this tradition is not for our good, tastes, likes, dislikes, styles of music, but for God and God alone Psalm 115:1.

The following is Augustine's prayer after being lost in sin and then found by God. Don't miss his ardent focus on loving God!

"Too late have I loved you, O Beauty so ancient, O Beauty so new. Too late have I loved you! You were within me but I was outside myself, and there I sought you! In my weakness I ran after the beauty of the things you have made. You were with me, and I was not with you. The things you have made kept me from you - the things which would have no being unless they existed in you! You have called, you have cried, and you have pierced my deafness. You have radiated forth, you have shined out brightly, and you have dispelled my blindness. You have sent forth your fragrance, and I have breathed it in, and I long for you. I have tasted you, and I hunger and thirst for you. You have touched me, and I ardently desire your peace."

St Augustine, Bishop, Writer, Doctor