The Worship Quote of the Week for (01/24/2006):

Christ-Centered Songs and Sermons
Perhaps you have heard the saying, “The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.” That sounds pretty great to me, but sometimes I wonder if leaders in our churches would agree on what that main thing really is. Today’s WORSHIP QUOTE by Kevin Navarro insists that the main thing is Christ.

We must be more Christ-centered in our worship services. When it comes to our songs, we must be concerned about the theology in the lyrics. . . . Our songs need to retell the Jesus story. If you want to see power reenter your worship services, just start singing about Jesus again.

Furthermore, our preaching needs to celebrate Christ. The more I think of my preaching as an act of worship and not merely as an act of exhortation, the more gospel I will have in my messages. Teach the Bible, but for heaven’s sake, preach Christ. The pulpit is not the place to share ideologies and opinions but the place to gossip the gospel. Declare the mighty acts of God.

— Kevin J. Navarro, from THE COMPLETE WORSHIP SERVICE: CREATING A TASTE OF HEAVEN ON EARTH. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2005, p. 37. ISBN 0-8010-9183-7

[Perhaps “gossip” isn’t the best word to use for communicating something as life-giving as the gospel of grace; but the idea of freely speaking and singing “Christ” is a good one. “The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.” Does anyone have solid research that shows where this popular phrase originated? I would like to nail that down. A pastor colleague of mine used to say, “We want to major on the majors and minor on the minors.” That is sound advice. How sad when our worship services are “famous” for things that are distractions to the amazing grace of God through Christ Jesus.]

Have a great week,

Chip Stam
Director, Institute for Christian Worship
School of Church Music and Worship
The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Louisville, Kentucky

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