Joint Liturgical Studies 1
The words of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount ‘Think not that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets: I came not to destroy but to fulfil’ (Mt. 5: 17), apply as much to worship as they do to other aspects of the Christian gospel. The originality of Christian worship is not that it abolishes Jewish worship but that it reforms and develops that worship, in accordance with Jesus’ teaching and in recognition of his saving work. Thus, the background to Christian worship is, at the outset, Judaism, and especially Jewish worship, as established in the Old Testament and as practised in the first century. By studying this we learn to recognise what is new in Christian worship, as well as what is old.