The Worshipping Church
“Worship that puts first the praise of God’s glory, worship that is according to God’s Word, worship that serves God and God alone does in fact edify the church. It edifies the church because it is the work of the Holy Spirit in the body of Christ. When in the worship of the church the Word is truly preached and the sacraments rightly administered, then God calls, teaches, and leads his people into a new way of life.”
-Hughes Oliphant Old
Mankind was created to worship the Lord. This is our chief end. The problem is that we have chosen to “worship and serve the creature rather than the Creator” (Romans 1:25), preferring the love of self rather than the love of our Maker. However, as the church of Jesus Christ redeemed through the blood of Christ and indwelt by the holy Spirit, we are able, by the sovereign grace of God, to fulfill our chief end once again. As Christians, we live to worship the Lord.
This is not something we do merely in private, but in public as well. As those who belong to Jesus Christ in body and soul, we belong not only to Christ as Head but also to His body, the church. As the body of Christ, we seek to glorify God and enjoy Him together week after week on the day which He has appointed for that purpose.
Our worship is unashamedly Christ-centered since God’s greatest desire is to glorify His own holy name, by exalting the supremacy of His Son, through the Spirit-wrought adoration of His people! In worship, the people of God, “with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another” (2 Cor. 3:18).
We believe that God gives Himself to us through the means which He Himself has provided for this end- specifically, the reading and preaching of God’s Word; the administration of the holy sacraments of baptism and the Lord’s Supper; and prayer..
Our liturgy is rooted in Scripture, centered upon Christ, and reflects that reverent simplicity and historic catholicity which our Reformed and Puritan forbears in the faith sought to cultivate when they gathered to worship God on the Lord’s day. The service consists of prayer, confession of sin, the singing of Psalms and hymns, the public reading and exposition of holy Scripture from both the Old and New Testaments, the confession of our faith, the collection of offerings, the public preaching of holy Scripture, and the administration of the sacraments of baptism. We celebrate the Lord's Supper on the last Sunday of each month. We also believe in covenant or infant baptism. God has entered into a covenant bond, not only with those who profess faith in Jesus Christ, but with their children as well. Both believers and their children constitute the visible church of Jesus Christ on earth and have from the very beginning of redemptive history. In a way similar to how the sign of circumcision was administered to the infant males before coming of Christ, so now— the sign of covenant, which is baptism (Col. 2:12-13)—- is to be applied to the children of every believer since they remain members of the visible church. This has very practical implications for how we view and rear our children. We view our children as disciples of Jesus Christ to be nurtured in the faith and as heirs of the covenant promises of God, promises centering upon Christ which must be received through faith.
Our purpose, as a church, is to glorify our Triune God by making disciples throughout Northeast Pennsylvania. As Christians who believe that Christ is reigning now, we believe that His crown rights extend to every sphere of life and thought. Thus, we seek to see all of life transformed by the gospel of His saving grace- not just a private sphere of spirituality cut off from the outside world. In all things, we seek to act justly and love mercy as we follow in the footsteps of our Savior. Whoever you are, whatever your sins and struggles may be, whether you’re a Christian or not, we’d love for you to join us and hear the good news of God’s grace in Christ!