Shelby G. Floyd
The New Testament clearly outlines the essentials on worship. These are: the Lord’s Supper, the contribution, prayer, preaching, and singing. However, in the matters of judgment or incidentals the New Testament does not have a lot to say. This indicates that God leaves it up to our human judgment as to how we should carry out what he has commanded when he has not specifically stated how we are to carry it out!
A Window into Worship
In our text, we have a window through which to see a worship service of the New Testament church. This worship took place at Troas on Paul’s third evangelistic journey (Acts 20:1-12).
As Paul traveled around visiting the churches he encouraged them with the word of God. Comfort and encouragement mostly comes from the word of God: “He traveled through that area, speaking many words of encouragement to the people, and finally arrived in Greece” (Acts 20:2).
First Day of the Week Worship
We notice that worship at Troas was on the first day of the week. This is what we call Sunday. Why was worship on Sunday and not on Saturday or any other day of the week?
“Now on the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul, ready to depart the next day, spoke to them and continued his message until midnight” (Acts 20:7 NKJV).
Why did the New Testament church worship on Sunday instead of Saturday, which was the day of worship for the Jews? They worshipped on Sunday because Jesus Christ himself sanctified the first day of the week, by his own resurrection from the dead on the first day the week (Luke 24:1).
John Worshipped in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day
John the apostle was exiled to the island of Patmos, probably by Domitian (84-96 A. D.). He was away from the church on the mainland of Asia Minor. But on Sunday—the first day of the week, John described himself as being in the Spirit on the Lord’s Day (Revelation 1:10). This means, that he was in heart and soul with the congregation that worshipped on the first day of the week. On Sunday all Christians need to be present in body and spirit to worship the Lord.
Let us also be devoted to taking the Lord’s Supper on the first day of the week, to remember the salvation we have in Christ. “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer” (Acts 2:42).
Copyright © 2011-2016 Shelby G. Floyd, All Rights Reserved
Shelby G. Floyd
Heartland Church of Christ
1693 West Main Street
Greenwood, Indiana 46142