I have noticed that many congregational worship services are built to climax at the evangelist's sermon. If our focus is to be on Christ and him crucified, shouldn't the focus and climax be the communion? Why are there 30+ minutes of listening to a sermon and only 5-7 minutes for people to share about what the cross means to them? What is the biblical precedent for the sermon? I know "they devoted themselves to the apostles teaching...," but that seems more like a daily thing, not a Sunday event. Sunday seems like it should be limited to communion and contribution (break bread, come together on the first day of the week). Are we following "rules taught by man"? -- C.T.

It is interesting how Protestant worship focuses on the message, while Catholic services focus on "mass." As long as everything truly focuses on Christ, I doubt there is a proper formula for constructing worship services. Would you not agree that a good sermon focuses us on Christ? And if so, the distinction between 5-7 minutes of communion sharing and 30+ minutes of preaching is an artificial one.

Biblical precedent for a sermon? The evidence is scant. Are people likely to give it up? I doubt it!

But "rules taught by man"? I think those words are way too strong. They apply, in context, to antibiblical traditions. I see no potentially unbiblical elements in view in our discussion. Maybe you are disappointed in your church... I do not know. But be careful not to reach for verses when speculation is the likely result.

As for contributions on Sundays, there is not even one NT passage on this. (There are two verses in Galatians and 1 Corinthians that show individuals set aside money on a weekly basis for a special famine relief contribution.) This does not necessarily mean it is wrong, however. For more, please keep exploring the website.