Monthly Archives: August 2012

“The New Covenant is like a marriage bond between God and His people. Their meeting each week properly brings joy and delight. So the saints sing Psalms to God.”

From the RPCNA Directory for the Worship of God:

“7. The New Covenant is like a marriage bond between God and His people. Their meeting each week properly brings joy and delight. So the saints sing Psalms to God.

8. The heartfelt singing of praise is an element of public worship. The Psalms of the Bible, because of positive biblical warrant, their inherent excellence, and their divine inspiration, are to be sung in the public worship of God, to the exclusion of all songs or hymns of human composition. They are to be sung without the accompaniment of instruments, since these are not authorized for New Testament worship. For the sake of unity, the Psalm versions used in the praise of God should ordinarily be those approved by the Synod of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America. Psalms, or portions of Psalms, should be chosen for the appropriateness of their content within a particular service of worship. If only a portion of a Psalm is sung, careful attention must be given to the larger context. Congregations should not fall into the habit of using only certain favorite Psalms, and sessions should consider a plan of singing systematically through the Book of Psalms.

9. The people of God are to sing thoughtfully, reverently, and enthusiastically, with grace in the heart. Careful attention should be paid to the music and to the leading of the precentor, that the praise might resound with a beauty reflective of the glory of God and His holiness. Those chosen to be precentors should have the marks of Christian maturity and the gifts to perform this function. They should lead the singing in a simple, orderly, and dignified manner. They should not interject interpretations or comments on the content of the Psalms sung. One of the fruits of the Reformation was the restoration of the biblical practice of congregational singing. A choir may be formed to help lead the praise, but singing must not be left to the choir. Congregational singing ought always to be the norm.

10. The Psalms have a depth of meaning and beauty that will repay the most careful study. It is vitally important that the congregation understand what is sung. Therefore, it is helpful for the elders to make brief comments on the Psalms sung. It is particularly helpful if one of the Psalms is selected for a more substantial, succinct explanation by an elder before it is sung. Attention should be given to how the Psalm reveals the work of Christ and the blessings of the New Covenant.

The RPCNA Directory for the Worship of God, F-4

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The Tucson Reformed Presbyterian Fellowship is meeting in a new location

The new location for the Tucson Reformed Presbyterian Fellowship (RPCNA) is:

The Doubletree Hotel Tucson-Reid Park
445 S. Alvernon Way,
Tucson, AZ 85711-4198

From their website:

“Our morning worship begins at 9:50 AM & Evening Worship at 4:30PM

Today, our worship seems unique, even strange to some.  We sing only the 150 Psalms without the use of instruments.  Strange as it may seem, for thousands of years, this was the norm in the church.  (see Dr. W. Robert Godfrey, Ancient Praise for a brief history of Psalm singing)

We hold to what is called the ‘Regulative Principle of Worship’, which states that God is only to be worshiped as He has revealed in His Word (Deut. 12:32). What God commands is to be employed in worship; if God does not command something, then it is forbidden.

This means that a simplicity of worship will be obvious as Word-centered worship is offered to God. The Tucson Reformed Presbyterian Fellowship will have the following elements in her public worship:

  • Reading of the Scriptures of the Old and New Testament.
  • The Preaching of the Word of God in an expository manner.
  • The Prayers of the saints and on behalf of the saints.
  • The collecting of gifts and tithes to sustain the advancement of Christ’s Kingdom.
  • The singing of Psalms without instrumentation.
  • The New Testament Sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper.

The Tucson Reformed Presbyterian Fellowship (RPCNA) is committed to the full inspiration and authority of the Bible in all matters of faith and life. We believe that the truth of Scripture is knowable and necessary for salvation. Faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the Word of Christ (Rom. 10:17). Since Christ commissioned the church to make disciples of all nations (Matt. 28:19), we believe it is part of our duty to, set forth the truth of Scripture clearly and publicly by way of preaching and teaching, and creeds and confessions, so that they may be to taught to observe all that Christ has commanded (Matt. 28:20).

In light of the above, we believe that the most comprehensive and accurate summary of what the Bible teaches is to be found in the Westminster Confession of Faith, together with the Westminster Larger and Shorter Catechisms. The Westminster Confession was completed in England in 1647 as a comprehensive statement of Christian belief and practice, with the desired intention of helping Christ’s church become unified in doctrine, government, and worship (John 17:11). In addition to the Westminster Standards, we also maintain the Testimony of the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America, which is our continuing and contemporary application of the Word of God to our current culture and context.

Each of these documents is considered to be subordinate to, and correctable by, the Word of God. We hope that you will take some time to read our Confessional Standards and contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

For a theology of New Testament worship, please see “The Worship of the Church.”

The Tucson Reformed Presbyterian Fellowship (RPCNA) is a new work planted by the First Reformed Presbyterian Church of Phoenix AZ.

The “Reformed” in our name refers to our adherence to the biblical principles reasserted in the Protestant Reformation of the 16th and 17th centuries. The Reformers reasserted that salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, for the glory of God alone. We stand with our forefathers in affirming the doctrine of “Sola Scriptura” – the conviction that the Scriptures are God-breathed and sufficient for all matters of life and godliness (2 Tim. 3:16).  Our spiritual heritage particularly comes from the Reformation in Scotland and the Scottish Covenanters.  “Presbyterian” refers to our form of church government. Each congregation is under the oversight of a plurality of elders, who are also part of broader courts known as Presbyteries and Synod.

Our heartfelt desire is to worship God according to His will, in spirit and in truth (John 4:24). We desire to glorify Him in our lives as individual Christians and as a body of believers united to Jesus Christ our Lord. If you live in the Tucson area, or are planning to move or visit here, we invite you to come and worship with us!”