The Worship Quote of the Week for (05/21/2002):

How Weird Is Christian Worship?
In planning faithful Christian worship, church leaders must decide whether to
use a "language" that is quite similar to that of the world around us ("all
things to all people"), or one that is distinctly "not of this world." In
todayís WORSHIP QUOTE the authors make an argument that Christian worship is
and should be VERY DIFFERRENT, even odd or weird when viewed by nonbelievers.
What do you think?


HOW WEIRD IS CHRISTIAN WORSHIP?
True worship will be odd and perhaps even weird to the watching world. This
oddness is not lamentable but essential to the churchís faithfulness and
witness. For is the gospel is foolishness, it is foolishness only to those
who do not believe. The church may use a human tongue as its language of
worship, it may use worldly time to determine when to meet for worship, it
may even use electricity drawn from state-run utilities to heat the building
and amplify the ministerís voice. But when the church assembles for worship
she is not at all like the world. She invokes the name of Christ. She prays
and sings to a God who cannot be seen . . .. She eats a holy meal whose
portions are tiny, but which, by the blessing of Christ, nourishes Godís
people for eternal life. In all these ways the church at worship is different
from the world. All elements of worship look weak and foolish to those
outside the house of God. But to Godís people they are manna that sustains
for eternal life.

óD.G. Hart and John Muether, WITH REVERENCE AND AWE: RETURNING TO THE BASICS
OF REFORMED WORSHIP, Phillipsburg, New Jersey: R&R; Publishing Company, 2002,
p. 34. ISBN 0-87552-179-7


Have a great week!


Chip Stam
Director, Institute for Christian Worship
School of Church Music and Worship
Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Louisville, Kentucky
www.carlstam.org
www.sbts.edu