The Worship Quote of the Week for (11/04/2008):

All or Nothing: Jesus Is Lord
CHRISTOS KURIOS! (Jesus is Lord!) is the short confessional statement that is drawn from the second chapter of Philippians--most likely a first-century hymn in praise of Jesus the Christ. In today’s WORSHIP QUOTE, pastor-author Tim Keller talks about the ultimate allegiance of the Christian.

A Christian is literally "Christ's one," someone who is not just vaguely influenced by Christian teaching, but who has switched his or her most fundamental allegiance to Jesus. Christians understand the all-or-nothing choice that is forced upon us by the magnitude of Jesus' claims.

From the earliest days, the confession of Christians was CHRISTOS KURIOS--"Jesus is Lord." In the historical context, in which it was required to say KAISER KURIOS, "Caesar is Lord," this confession meant that Jesus was the supreme power. He was not just a divine angelic being, but, as an early Christian hymn put it, he had "the name above every name" (Philippians 2:9). In him "All the fullness of the godhead dwells bodily" (Colossians 2:9).

--Timothy Keller, THE REASON FOR GOD: BELIEF IN AN AGE OF SKEPTICISM. New York: Dutton/Penquin Group, 2008, pp. 228-29. ISBN-13: 978-0-525-95049-3. Highly recommended.

[How does your congregation sing, "JESUS IS LORD"? Here are two of my favorite hymns that deal with the "Jesus Is Lord" passage from Philippians 2:5-11.

1. "Jesus Is Lord" by Keith Getty and Stuart Townend (2003)

2. "At the Name of Jesus" with text by Caroline Noel (1870); sung to a variety of tunes, but I like WYE VALLEY or CAMBERWELL (by Michael Brierley, 1960).

I commend these to you for private and corporate worship. I remember hearing a sermon some years ago that included a reminder that the idea of saying "No, Lord!" is a clear indication that Christ is not really the Lord of our lives. All-or-nothing is the way to go.]

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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