Perhaps there are several answers to this question.
At any rate, over the years, how we’ve chosen to engage this question is the single most important element that has shaped and influenced our worship and how we do church.
Stop. And think about it.
Well, recently I received an answered that caused me great concern. Along with a few others, I heard one leader say that the purpose of gathered worship was to reach the lost. So the music we sing, the preaching, how we do announcements, and the prayers should all be about reaching the lost.
It’s that seek-sensitive approach.
But gathered worship is for believers to receive strength and encouragement from each other as they prepare to engage the world and the lost for Christ and his kingdom (1 Corinthians 14).
We gather around the Word, the sacraments, in the name of the Triune God, to offer ourselves to the Lord and to one another, and to receive from the Lord and one another, for his glory and our good.