Insights From My Upcoming Book

WorshipFor many years I have had a great concern for the quality of corporate worship in evangelical churches. In my soon-to-be-published book, The Pastor’s First Love, I explore this idea from several angles. Here are a couple of paragraphs on this subject, adapted from the book:

“But what happens when an elevated vision of God no longer dominates every part of corporate worship? Worship may then become a combination of the refined and the trite – or even the utterly casual (“bring your coffee with you”). Congregations may still enjoy being together, but a serious malnutrition of the spirit sets in. The horizontal lines of human fellowship may remain intact but they will lack the bonding that grows from a humble sense of the great price Jesus Christ paid to redeem us.

“And the vertical lines of adoration and awe will weaken. Worship leaders may become verbose because the whole event is not regulated by a deep sense of reverence. Style dominates substance, and worship and entertainment become intermixed. Ultimately God’s people leave the event lacking the cleansing and renewing effect of true worship.

“The essence of worship is reflected in the cry of the Heavenly Beings in Isaiah’s temple revelation: ‘Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory’ (Isaiah 6:3). It is reflected in the declaration of Peter when Jesus asked, ‘Who do you say I am?’ Peter replied in a flash of holy insight, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God’ (Matthew 16:16).”

It is my opinion that if churches of many denominational origins are going to stand ready to offer hope to our culture in its current and future times of testing, they must recover a deeper sense of corporate worship when they gather. Let us pray together to that end.

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4 thoughts on “Insights From My Upcoming Book

    • Thanks, Brenda. It is now in the hands of the designer and should be available before the end of the month. Because we no longer have any delivery system as a denomination I’m looking for all the help I can get to make its availability known. We will have it on The title is — The Pastor’s First Love: This and Other Essays on a High and Holy Calling. DNB.

  1. I am a Greenville College alumnus from the 70’s and I want to first thank you for all the great insights I gained while you lead the college church. I think you are that same Bastian. :). I agree with your insights and do bemoan that the cleansing of that time of reverence can be lost because we want so desperately to connect. Corporate Worship is that time. In our western culture there is no other time like this.
    When else can we lay our hearts in front of the Living God with our families and neighbors and friends in attendance?
    Or what can substitute for the infusing of corporate combined unified Worship thru prayers spoken from our hearts and songs sent to heaven that drown out the insanity of the everyday?
    Please get this word out to the church. We desperately need to find a way FORWARD to touch the hem of His Garment.

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