Friday, May 02, 2008

Evangelicals and Liturgy

Over at CT, there is an article by Mark Galli on A Deeper Relevance which asks why are so many evangelicals attracted to this thing called liturgy? I think churches need to maintain a healthy focus on Spirit, Word, and Sacrament in their worship services for three reasons:

1. If you focus predominantly on the power of the preached Word, but push the Sacraments to the corner and domesticate the Spirit to suit your theology, then you'll turn the church into a Mosque.

2. If you focus on the experience and euphoria of the Spirit, and have the Word eviscerated into some pop-psychology, and relegate the Sacraments to something too "liturgical" and passe you'll soon find yourself practicing Mysticism.

3. If you focus on the Sacraments as instruments through which we encounter God, but reduce the Word to sound bites of moral advice, and censure the Spirit as the concern of a few eccentric enthusiasts, then you'll find yourself pushing Magic.


Paul Cat said...

Liturgy is doing the world the way the world was meant to be done. Liturgy transcends. It accomplishes more than what the ritual of any cult can accomplish. It is cultic only to the extent that it tries to form Christian culture. It is the work of the people. It is the work of God. It is the work of Love.

hrobins said...

Hello Mike,

You've commented on the necessity of balanced liturgy in this and previous posts. I agree with you, and I'm interested in the practical application of your assertions. If we were to realise this beautifully organised service, what do you think it would look like?