Let's be honest. Attending a service at a new Church can be more than a little scary. Yet if we have a general idea about what we might encounter, I think a great deal of the fear can be eliminated.
It is definitely worth the effort to find a good Church home because the fact is that God never intended that the Christian life should be lived in isolation. We were never meant to "do Christianity" by ourselves. The Bible tells us that the members of the early church "devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers." (Acts 2:42)
It is true to say that God saves each of us individually but He immediately sets each of us as Christians in a family, called "the Body of Christ" and in a visible expression of it called the local Church. This is a place where we can be equipped, nourished and strengthened in our faith and is the primary place where we can receive the "means of grace" to grow in our walk with God and as a disciple of Christ. Its also a place where we can use the gifts God has given us to help and serve others. Being a member of a local Church is an indispensible part of God's intended will for each one of us.
Another Scripture in Hebrews 10:24-25 says, "And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near." As the return of Christ draws near we are told to make our gathering together an ever greater priority and focus.
Our purpose in meeting together is to worship our great God, to be equipped and strengthened by the word of God, and to serve and encourage one another as disciples of Christ.
Because of these convictions, you are likely to see the following features in a Sunday worship service at the King's Church:
We start with a time of praise and worship as we come into God's presence with singing, celebrating who He is and His amazing grace towards us in the gospel. Our music is contemporary in style as we sing both new songs as well as more familiar hymns.
Our worship continues as we give in the offering to honor God and support the work of the local church and mission projects locally and around the world.
We then include a short time to welcome our first time guests and make announcements.
We then take a few minutes to greet one another, get children to their classes and prepare to listen to the word of God.
Our worship then continues as we hear a portion of the word of God read to us and then through preaching, its meaning and life application is made clear to us. We call this "expository preaching" and it constitutes the main part of our service. What exactly is expositional preaching? A sermon is expositional if its content and intent are controlled by the content and intent of a particular passage of Scripture. In other words, the preacher says what the passage says, drawing out the intended meaning of the author, and that the sermon accomplishes in his listeners exactly what God is seeking to accomplish through the chosen passage of his Word.
To aid us in our study of God's word, outlines of the sermons are normally provided.
Prayer and personal ministry is available.
We endeavor to be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit in our services.
We receive communion together as a church family usually once every month.
Our Sunday morning service lasts approximately 90 minutes.
Just a word on Bible translation - Our generation is so blessed. In contrast to former generations where access to the word of God was very rare, there are many good Bible translations available to us in the English language today. How we thank God for this. It is simply a fact of history to say that many have paid the ultimate price (forfeiting their very lives) so that we would have access to the word of God in our native tongue. Yet now, because there are so many translations available to us, if the version used from the pulpit is not the same one we have brought to the service it is often difficult to follow a preacher's sermon. Therefore, it may be helpful to know that we mainly use the English Standard Version of the Bible (ESV) in our services.
We hope the above comments are helpful to you. By the way, you can come in casual or smart clothes - either is fine with us. We look forward to seeing you at one of our services very soon.
Pastor John is often asked which study Bible he would recommend. Again, there are a number of good ones available, but in terms of accurate translation and helpful study notes, the two he most recommends are:
1. English Standard Version Study Bible (available in a number of formats to suit most price ranges, including hardcover, trutone, bonded leather, genuine leather and even calf skin leather). You can read about the amazing features of this Study Bible at www.esvstudybible.org
Here's a video by showing some of the features of the ESV Study Bible:
2. The Reformation Study Bible (ESV) - (the ESV text along with very helpful study notes)
Here's an 8 minute video by Dr. R. C. Sproul showing some of the features of the Reformation Study Bible:
*** Should you be interested, both of these study Bibles above can be obtained at a substantial discount (40%) online from www.monergismbooks.com ***