“Worship God.”

Rev. 22:9

“Fear God, and give glory to Him… and worship Him that made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and the fountains of waters.”

Rev. 14:7




All the Works of the Westminster Divines on Worship

The Regulative Principle of Worship

The Grounds of Christ the Mediator Receiving Divine Worship

The History of Scottish Worship



Order of Contents

The Regular Elements of Worship
Special Elements
Related Issues
On Natural vs. Instituted Worship



Regular Elements of Worship

“…after solemn calling on them to the worshipping of the great name of God…”¹

“Prayer, with thanksgiving, being one special part of religious worship… the reading of the Scriptures with godly fear; the sound preaching, and conscionable hearing of the word, in obedience unto God, with understanding, faith and reverence; singing of psalms with grace in the heart; as also the due administration and worthy receiving of the sacraments instituted by Christ; are all parts of the ordinary religious worship of God”²

“After which… let the minister dismiss the congregation with a solemn blessing.”¹

¹ Westminster Directory of Public Worship
² Westminster Confession of Faith, 21.3.5


Call to Worship


Singing of Psalms

Reading of Scripture


Baptism and the Lord’s Supper




 Special Elements of Worship

“…beside religious oaths and vows, solemn fastings, and thanksgivings upon special occasions, which are, in their several times and seasons, to be used in a holy and religious manner.”

Westminster Confession of Faith, ch. 21.5

Oaths and Vows


Days of Thanksgiving



Related Issues of Worship

Musical Instruments

Religious Images in Worship

Images of Christ


Head Coverings

Responsive Readings

The Lord’s Day 

Other Religious Holidays

Children in Public Worship 

Tithes and Offerings

Saying Amen at the End of Prayers

Dancing & Drama

Fentiman, Travis – ‘Visual Imagery, Drama & Dancing in Worship’  2017  140 paragraphs

Begg, James – ‘Dancing in Worship’  1866  12 pp.  being Appendix no. IV in The Use of Organs and Other Instruments of Music in Worship, p. 257-269





Rutherford, Samuel – ‘The Introduction’ & Ch. 1 of The Divine Right of Church Government  1646

Poole, Matthew – Evangelical Worship is Spiritual Worship as it was Discussed in a Sermon  1660  24 pp.

Wilson, John – A Brief Discourse Concerning the Spirituality and Simplicity of New Testament Worship  1667  140 pp.

MacWard, Robert – Dialogues 2, 3 & 5  in The True Non-Conformist  1671

MacWard was the protege of Samuel Rutherford.  He here defends the non-conforming presbyterians during the era of persecution in Scotland against the criticisms of an Anglican.  For the topics addressed, see the Table of Contents to the dialogues.



Binnie, William – The Christian Ordinances, 1882, p. 52, 58 pages, from his The Church

Binnie was of the Free Church of Scotland.




Gillespie, George – A Dispute Against the English-Popish Ceremonies Obtruded on the Church of Scotland  1637

This launched the 2nd Reformation in Scotland, in 1638.  Gillespie here argues, with the authority of God’s Word, against much of contemporary presbyterian and reformed worship.



On Natural vs. Instituted Worship

Ames, William – ‘Natural Worship & Instituted Worship’  from The Marrow of Sacred Divinity, book 2, ch. 5, sections 1-8 & ch. 13  Includes a footnote of Samuel Willard on the topic, from his Body of Divinity, Sermon 159

Cheynell, Francis – ‘Trinitarian Worship: Natural and Instituted’  from The Divine Trinunity of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit  (1650), pp. 354-360

Owen, John – Questions 1-2 of A Short Catechism on Worship: Dr. Owen’s Instruction in the Worship of God, by Way of Questions and Answer; with an Explication and Confirmation of Those Answers  (1667)

Heidegger, Johann Heinrich – ‘On Natural Worship’  from Body of Christian Theology, 25.2




“Let us also learn that nothing is less consistent than to punish heavily the crimes whereby mortals are injured, whilst we connive at the impious errors or sacrilegious modes of worship whereby the majesty of God is violated.”

John Calvin
on Ex. 32:29

“The worship of Christ, if he be not God, is idolatry, and the Christian religion damnable sin.  So we must be very sure that Christ is God before we worship him.”

John ‘Rabbi’ Duncan




Related Pages

The Church

Family Worship

Personal Godliness