The Regulative Principle of Worship

Dr. Darryl G. Hart speaks about a key feature to Reformed worship, the regulative principle. Generally speaking, the principle seeks to allow worship to be governed strictly by the Word of God. Dr. Hart is Visiting Professor of History at Hillsdale College in Hillsdale, MI and has written several books such as A Secular Faith: Why Christianity Favors the Separation of Church and State and Deconstructing Evangelicalism: Conservative Protestantism in the Age of Billy Graham. He has also co-authored a number of other books with John Muether, including With Reverence and Awe: Returning to the Basics of Reformed Worship.

Participants: , ,

Christ the Center focuses on Reformed Christian theology. In each episode a group of informed panelists discusses important issues in order to encourage critical thinking and a better understanding of Reformed doctrine with a view toward godly living. Browse more episodes from this program or subscribe to the podcast feed.

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


8 years ago

I’m close to the end of this program, it is very good, thanks guys. I always enjoy hearing from Dr. Hart. I do have a question regarding extemporaneous prayer and the your collective thoughts on the relation of a practice to the regulative principle. My church has a practice where congregants are, occasionally, asked to give short-sentence prayers on a specific topic (thanking God for the Trinity on Trinity Sunday, or some such). Dr. Hart spoke a bit on his wariness of too much uncontrolled spontaneity, which I agree with, but I am of the opinion that this practice is a helpful way to include at least relatively spontaneous contributions in the service from the laity. So, my question is, does this skirt the bounds of the regulative principle as understood historically, or would you say it is a gray area? Thanks.

Terry M. Gray

8 years ago

Good stuff. Thanks for the interview. Often (in RPCNA circles) this discussion turns into exclusive psalmody or whether or not there should be instruments. I appreciate Darryl’s emphasis on the major elements of worship. Song can sometimes be pedagogical and thus not prayer but declaration of Biblical truth, so in terms of the dialog it could be considered God’s speech.

John Divito

8 years ago

Thank you for the latest edition of your podcast–I am really enjoying this interview. However, I am wondering if anyone could provide me with a link or with more information on the article that David Gordon wrote which Darryl Hart mentioned several times. Thank you in advance for your help!

Mark G

8 years ago

T. David Gordon discusses regulative principle in a book review in Modern Reformation. It is copyrighted but posted with permission here:


He has a number of interesting articles posted here:




Reformed Forum
115 Commerce Dr., Suite E
Grayslake, IL 60030

+1 847.986.6140

Copyright © 2020 Reformed Forum