The Missoula Reformed Bible Study is a mission work of the Belgrade United Reformed Church in Belgrade, MT. At this time, the work is organized and led by Jared Beaird (M.Div. Westminster Seminary California candidate) with oversight from the Belgrade Consistory.
We are about a Confessional Reformed church with “acceptable worship, with reverence and awe” according to the Word of God (Heb 13:28). God takes worship seriously so he devotes the first four commandments directly to worship, “You shall have no other gods before me,” “You shall not make for yourself an idol”; “You shall not misuse the name of the Lord” and “Remember the Sabbath day.”
These passages reveal a Reformed doctrine known as the Regulative Principle of Worship (RPW). We may only do in worship what is required explicitly or implicitly in God’s Word. It is not “May we do this?” but “What must we do?” So we are about worship God’s way.
An underlying theological reason for the RPW is the doctrine of Christian liberty. God alone is Lord of the conscience and no one can make us do what God has prohibited. In matters of faith and worship, we can only do what God has explicitly commanded. Parallel to this is the ministerial authority of the Church. The Church does not have creative authority. It can declare only what the Word of God teaches. We are only about the Word of God.
Another major theological reason is the lex orandi lex credendi; the way of worship is the way of believing. The way we worship has major implications for what we end up believing. We believe that our only hope and comfort is found in the fact that “I am not my own, but belong—body and soul, in life and in death— to my faithful savior Jesus Christ. He has fully paid for all my sins with his precious blood, and has set me free from the tyranny of the devil. He also watches over me in such a way that not a hair can fall from my head without the will of my father in heaven: in fact, all things must work together for my salvation. Because I belong to him, Christ, by his Holy Spirit, assures me of eternal life and makes me whole-heartedly willing and ready from now on to live for him” (Heidelberg A. 1). What we are about is the proclamation of the gospel of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.