The Worship Quote of the Week for (08/17/1999):

Worship and Evangelism
Today's WORSHIP QUOTE is another from the most recent book by Marva Dawn. In
a chapter entitled "Don't Let the People Cop Out of Witnessing," the author
offers thoughtful insights on the important differences between worship and

Worship is the language of love and growth between believers and God;
evangelism is the language of introduction between those who believe and
those who don't. To confuse the two and put on worship the burden of
evangelism robs the people of God of their responsibility to care about the
neighbor, defrauds the believers of transforming depth, and steals from God
the profound praise of which he is worthy.

Of course the distinction is not total, for if believers worship with
gladness and passion, anyone not yet a part of the community certainly will
be attracted to the One who is the object of their worship. But to focus the
worship on evangelistic introduction deprives believers of deeper nurturing
toward Churchbeing and deprives God of the intimate and involved worship due
him from the Church.

BEING CHURCH FOR THE WORLD, Chapter 9, "Don't Let the People Cop Out of
Witnessing," Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1999, p. 124.

[Here's a little more from the same chapter]
As you read these pages, keep in mind that I am convinced that we SHOULD be
using new music and new worship forms; however, we use them not to attract
people, but because they are faithful in praising God and transforming us to
be his people. If we choose a certain musical style or other elements simply
to appeal to those outside our walls, then we are forcing worship to bear the
brunt of evangelism, which is instead the task of all believers. Don't
misunderstand: good worship WILL BE evangelistic, but that is not its primary
purpose, for it is directed toward God, not toward the neighbor. No passage
in the Scriptures says, "Worship the Lord to attract the unbeliever." Rather,
in countless texts we are commanded, invited, urged, wooed to worship the
Trinity because God is worthy of our praise. As stated at the beginning of
this chapter, WORSHIP can actually be done only by those who recognize that
worthiness. (p. 123)

Have a great week of worship, but don't cop out of evangelism!

Chip Stam
Pastor of Worship and Music
Chapel Hill Bible Church
Chapel Hill, North Carolina