The Worship Quote of the Week for (01/23/1996):

Empty Religion
This week the WQOTW comes from John Stott.

We need to listen again to the biblical criticism of religion. No book, even
by Marx and his followers, is more scathing of empty religion than the Bible.
The prophets of the eighth and seventh centuries BC were outspoken in their
denunciation of the formalism and hypocrisy of Israelite worship. Jesus then
applied their critique to the Pharisees of his day: "These people . . . .
honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me" (Is. 29:13; Mk.
7:6). And this indictment of religion by the Old Testament prophets and by
Jesus is uncomfortably applicable to us and our churches today. Too much of
our worship is ritual without reality, form without power, fun without fear,
religion without God.

--John Stott, in THE CONTEMPORARY CHRISTIAN (InterVarsity Press, 1992)

Have a great week,

Chip Stam