Author: MATT MERKER
Publisher: Crossway Books
This very useful book appears at an important moment in history as so many churches and believers have had to consider what to do under lockdown restrictions. Matt Merker offers timely insights into Scripture and advice as to the centrality of being together regularly for the worship of God. He gives us plenty to think about regarding how we could engage with this in different cultural and church traditions.
The book looks at fundamental questions such as, ‘What does God intend the local church to be and do?’ and the basic question, ‘Do we need to gather?’ We are introduced to the rich implications of God’s Word for the church when it does come together, the author quoting from David Peterson: ‘Worship is an engagement with God on the terms that He proposes, and in the way which He alone makes possible.’
Merker moves on to consider why God gathers us to worship, what we should do when together, and how the whole church participates in the gathering. In each area there is refreshing guidance to help us think through what we do and why!
The theological stance is Reformed and Baptist, but it includes other church backgrounds in the discussions. The ‘regulative principle of worship’ that was espoused by the Reformers and Puritans is explained helpfully and discussed at some length.
The book is at a level suitable for a large majority of church members, taking us all back to the Word of God and the glory of God. No one will agree with all that is said, yet the whole book stands as a stimulating discussion to help us towards a biblically healthy understanding of corporate worship. Highly recommended.