The regulative principle of worship

Discussion in 'Liturgy, and Book of Common Prayer' started by Distraught Cat, Mar 2, 2023.

  1. Distraught Cat

    Distraught Cat Active Member

    Posts:
    138
    Likes Received:
    70
    Country:
    United States
    Religion:
    Christian
    Unless I have wildly misunderstood, the relative principle of worship is the reformed idea that worship of God must include that- and only that - which He has expressly declared in the scripture, so that whatsoever may not be found therein is prohibited; if I understand still further, this is not part of Anglicanism at any stage past Elizabeth, but there doesn't seem to be any thread dedicated to critiquing it or exposing it. I infer that the main arguments against it are that it uses the Scriptures in a way for which they were not intended, and that there's not any patristic precedent, but I thought that this community might like to comment.
     
  2. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    3,416
    Likes Received:
    1,714
    Country:
    UK
    Religion:
    CofE
    I would think that anything not actually forbidden in scripture is OK in worship, provided it meets the requirement of it being done 'truthfully, in the Spirit'.
    .
     
    Br. Thomas and Rexlion like this.
  3. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    4,214
    Likes Received:
    2,153
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Christian attending ACNA
    Quite true. I think they call that the "normative principle," don't they? Not that I have ever researched all of the reasoning or arguments made for either principle.
     
  4. Thomas Didymus

    Thomas Didymus Member

    Posts:
    74
    Likes Received:
    43
    Country:
    United States
    Religion:
    Christian
    Ahoy Distraught Cat,

    My understanding is that for Reformed Christians, especially Presbyterians, scripture is the basis for everything church-related but does not determine the Church's existence.

    twin
     
  5. Br. Thomas

    Br. Thomas Active Member

    Posts:
    234
    Likes Received:
    182
    Country:
    U.S.A.
    Religion:
    Anglican Catholic
    I sit and read all of the writings about what is correct and what is accepted and smile and ask myself if it will matter on Judgement Day? Will we stand before God and be asked if we adhered to this or did that, when it is much of what man adds to Scripture as religion? I need only reflect back to a Roman Catholic chaplain being asked, "Father, which is the true way to God?" His response was not what most had anticipated. He said religion and its Path to God were much like a dollar. How many different ways can Man put coins together to attain a dollar? Such is religion. There are Roman Catholics, Lutherans, Episcopalians, Anglicans, Presbyterians, Baptists and whatever denomination of Christianity one can think of, yet ALL direct one on a Path to God. Scripture directs us and gives us guidelines and Commandments. Man adds his interpretation and will it all matter if one truly accepts and believes in Jesus Christ as their Savior and repents of their sins? This is just the rambling of an old man with an opinion.
     
  6. Shane R

    Shane R Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    1,166
    Likes Received:
    1,209
    Country:
    USA
    Religion:
    Anglican
    I would add one clarification to this: what is generally meant by 'Scripture' is only the New Testament. It is a rare thing to see a church that promotes the regulative principle using things like ceremonial vestments, incense, and some other practices that were part of the ceremonial law. Any approach to Christianity that discounts the Old Testament in this fashion is really Marcionite at its core.
     
  7. Tiffy

    Tiffy Well-Known Member

    Posts:
    3,416
    Likes Received:
    1,714
    Country:
    UK
    Religion:
    CofE
    Surely something permitted under The Covenant must therefore be at least permitted under the New Covenant, it being better and more gracious than the Old, unless specifically superceded by New Testament statements of scripture, such as we may find in The Letter to the Hebrews. Animal sacrifices are therefore no longer necessary or acceptable to God. The sacrifices acceptable are of an entirely different order.
    .
     
    Shane R likes this.
  8. CRfromQld

    CRfromQld Moderator Staff Member

    Posts:
    460
    Likes Received:
    217
    Country:
    Australia
    Religion:
    Anglican
    I think that would be overly restrictive. On the other hand saying what is not expressly prohibited is permitted would veer too far in the other direction.
    From what I have seen on line some (particularly USA) churches tend more toward entertainment than worship.
    May I suggest that what is directed to worship of God should be permitted.