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Liturgical Worship

Liturgical Worship

Lutherans believe that worship is an act of receiving God’s gifts. That’s why the worship service we use is called the Divine Service. It’s a time during which God comes to us through His Word and Sacraments (baptism and Lord’s supper).

Lutherans use the terms sacramental and sacrificial to distinguish (1) the parts of the service in which God serves us with His Gospel gifts from (2) those in which we respond with prayer, praise, and thanksgiving. The Lutheran Divine Service has a particularly well-tuned balance between the two. This comes fundamentally from building the service around those two great gifts of Word and Supper. The service then provides appropriate ways for us to respond to God’s gifts.

Martin Luther described the Divine Service as a person coming with an empty sack. As we worship, God fills our sack with forgiveness, peace, love, and mercy. In response we praise Him and confess Him to be our Lord and Savior. We leave the service with the sack over our shoulders and quickly find ourselves in need of what the Lord has given us.

Whether you come from a liturgical church body or not, you may wonder what the various parts of the liturgy are all about. If that is you and you would like to know more, you may follow this link for an explanation of the Lutheran liturgy.