The Worship Quote of the Week for (07/28/2009):

Push-Button Spirituality
There is a health update at the end of this message.
Please see the note below about music/worship study at
The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
is still available at

Today's WORSHIP QUOTE is another from the pen of A. W. Tozer. He was the pastor of Chicago's Southside Alliance Church from 1928 to 1959. He never went to a Bible school, seminary or university, but his many writings have consistently and powerfully directed the reader's attention to the amazing God who desires our love, devotion and worship. Even sixty years ago (1948), he warned against the Christian church relying on entertainment, salesmanship, and "push-button techniques" to foster a deep, Christ-centered, Spirit-empowered relationship with the Almighty God.

A generation of Christians reared among push buttons and automatic machines is impatient of slower and less direct methods of reaching their goals. We have been trying to apply machine-age methods to our relations with God. We read our chapter, have our short devotions, and rush away, hoping to make up for our deep inward bankruptcy by attending another gospel meeting or listening to another thrilling story told by a religious adventurer lately returned from afar.

The tragic results of this spirit are all about us. Shallow lives, hollow religious philosophies, the preponderance of the element of fun in gospel meetings, the glorification of men, trust in religious externalities, quasi-religious fellowships, salesmanship methods, the mistaking of dynamic personality for the power of the Spirit; these and such as these are the symptoms of an evil disease, a deep and serious malady of the soul.

---A. W. Tozer, in THE PURSUIT OF GOD, Harrisburg, PA: Christian Publications, 1948, pp. 69-70.

[Lord, protect us from spiritual counterfeits. Give us perseverance to abide in You, to walk with You, to trust in You, to believe and savor Your Word, to submit to Your Spirit's work. Forgive us for our desire for quick fixes and rapid-fire spiritual growth. Have mercy on us. Amen.]


Perhaps you have heard about the recent changes in music study at Southern Seminary. I canít tell you how many people have contacted me, asking if I would come teach somewhere else since my job had been terminated. FUNNY! Here is the real story: The School of Church Music and Worship and the Leadership School at SBTS have been brought into a single school which is now called The School of Church Ministries. Dr. Thomas Bolton is stepping down as dean (after nine years), and he will continue to teach after a well-deserved sabbatical. I have been granted tenure and look forward to getting back to the classroom and the podium this semester. I will continue to serve as the director of the Institute for Christian Worship. Dr. Esther Crookshank has been named director of the new Academy of Sacred Music that will oversee the Seminary Music Academy, the R. Inman Johnson Concert Series, and certain lectures on hymnology and the like. Dr. Douglas Smith plans to retire in December. Dr. Greg Brewton will oversee the music portion of the new school. Dr. Ronald Turner and Dr. Sandra Turner are still here and going strong. That gives you a little glimpse of things ahead. We are still admitting students and look forward to many, many years of training church musicians for service in the Lord's precious church. Please pray for us and let me hear from you if there are prospective students whom I should contact (


Dear Praying Friends,

There are photos and longer journal entries at See also for past updates and comments.

"Steady as she goes!" describes life this last week. I will visit the Brown Cancer Center for a checkup on August 14. Over all, we are rejoicing in the great results of the stem cell transplant treatment and in my progress towards a full schedule of activities. I will teach this semester at the seminary and will begin planning and leading worship at Clifton Baptist Church on August 2. Join us in thanking God for these significant blessings.

Please read the important note above about the recent changes in music and worship studies at our seminary.

Thanks for praying for my full and PERMANENT recovery.

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

To subscribe, unsubscribe, or view a complete
index of worship quotes, please visit