The Westminster Confession of Faith
Chapter 21 - Of Religious Worship, and the Sabbath Day
1. The light of nature showeth that there is a God, who hath lordship and sovereignty over all, is good, and doth
good unto all, and is therefore to be feared, loved, praised, called upon, trusted in, and served, with all the heart,
and with all the soul, and with all the might. But the acceptable way of worshipping the true God is instituted by
Himself, and so limited by His own revealed will, that He may not be worshipped according to the imaginations and
devices of men, or the suggestions of Satan, under any visible representation, or any other way not prescribed in
the holy Scripture.
2. Religious worship is to be given to God, the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost; and to Him alone; not to angels, saints,
or any other creature: and since the fall, not without a Mediator; nor in the mediation of any other but of Christ
3. Prayer, with thanksgiving, being one special part of religious worship, is by God required of all men: and that
it may be accepted, it is to be made in the name of the Son, by the help of His Spirit, according to His will, with
understanding, reverence, humility, fervency, faith, love, and perseverance; and, if vocal, in a known tongue.
4. Prayer is to be made for things lawful, and for all sorts of men living, or that shall live hereafter: but not
for the dead, nor for those of whom it may be known that they have sinned the sin unto death.
5. The reading of the Scriptures with godly fear; the sound preaching and conscionable hearing of the Word, in obedience
unto God, with understanding, faith, and reverence; singing of psalms with grace in the heart; as also, the due administration
and worthy receiving of the sacraments instituted by Christ; are all parts of the ordinary religious worship of God:
beside religious oaths, vows, solemn fastings, and thanksgivings, upon special occasions, which are, in their several
times and seasons, to be used in a holy and religious manner.
6. Neither prayer, nor any other part of religious worship, is now under the Gospel either tied unto, or made more
acceptable by any place in which it is performed, or towards which it is directed: but God is to be worshipped everywhere,
in spirit and truth; as in private families daily, and in secret each one by himself; so, more solemnly, in the public
assemblies, which are not carelessly or wilfully to be neglected, or forsaken, when God, by His Word or providence,
7. As it is the law of nature, that, in general, a due proportion of time be set apart for the worship of God; so,
in His Word, by a positive, moral, and perpetual commandment, binding all men, in all ages, He hath particularly
appointed one day in seven, for a Sabbath, to be kept holy unto Him: which, from the beginning of the world to the
resurrection of Christ, was the last day of the week; and, from the resurrection of Christ, was changed into the
first day of the week, which, in Scripture, is called the Lord's Day, and is to be continued to the end of the world,
as the Christian Sabbath.
8. This Sabbath is then kept holy unto the Lord, when men, after a due preparing of their hearts, and ordering of
their common affairs before-hand, do not only observe an holy rest, all the day, from their own works, words, and
thoughts about their worldly employments, and recreations, but also are taken up the whole time in the public and
private exercises of His worship, and in the duties of necessity and mercy.