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Page 274

Why should our attitude toward Scripture reading be similar to that of Samuel's, "Speak LORD; for Thy servant heareth"
(I Samuel 3:9b)?

Do you view the worship service prayers as the prayer of an officebearer, or of the congregation? What significant difference would result from these two views?

    Mary half-heartedly listened to the Scripture reading in church on Sunday morning. A new, visiting minister was preaching and she was anxious to hear what he would say.

    Imagine an absent father writing a personal, important letter to his family. One teenage daughter is not very interested in reading or listening to the reading of his letter. She is interested in listening to others talk about the letter, but not in the letter itself.

    Using this example, explain why Mary's attitude toward Scripture reading is both wrong and strange.

5. Congregational Prayer - Concerning prayer when worshipping in God's house, Christ testified, "My house shall be called the house of prayer" (Matthew 21: 13). Prayer is an important component of any form of worship, also the church worship service.

Congregational prayer should:

  • Be congregational prayer - Through the means of its spokesman, its minister or elder, the entire congregation prays to God. The officebearer is not offering a personal prayer to God in the church service, but a congregational prayer. All gathered for worship are called to pray from their hearts with the one they have chosen to be their spokesman. They are called to pray in unity, in spirit, seeking grace to agree, identify, and become one with the prayer as it is being offered. Prayer in the worship service is to be congregational prayer.

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