Worship In The New Testament..Hopefully With Some Current Application

today in class we were doing a summary of what we have been looking at in new testament worship.. we were using words, word pairs ad phrases to create a mesh of what was included or important in the scope of it all.

some of the contributions that stood out to me, were paradoxical in nature…particularly ‘individual & community’.

it’s very current context to think of worship as an individual, even private affair between us and God. but the primary forms that we see in the new testament are community based, around festivals and incarnational ideas of meeting the needs of the community, thus living out faith in practice, as well as internal attitude.

so how do you balance that salvation is personal? or is it? can you be saved without existing in community? can you be saved by grace of the community you live in?

these are not questions that i am asking necessarily, but they were raised by the class. i think that it’s both our personal salvation being worked out within the scope of our individual lives and our communal lives. i think we struggle because we are so used to thinking in the terms of complete, finished products. community isn’t a completed action, it’s essentially going to remain unfulfilled, incomplete until the end of it all, when Christ returns. so it’s hard for us to understand how to be both individual and communal, because we so often get the communal wrong.

so how do we continue to allow grace to unify our diversity?? unify our mistakes? cover over our sins? grace is the application of Perfect Love… and yet grace allows for so many of the shades of gray that separate us as the Body of Christ [global] and allow for so many distinctions.

more and more questions to be answered. meanwhile i am reflecting on Colossians 2.8.

“See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ.”

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