Jonathan Aigner at his blog, Ponder Anew, asks the right question – “But contemporary worship brings people to Jesus! Right…?
Churches think they have found the magic bullet by a smokin’ praise team and “practical” sermons. This needs to be questioned. Jesus authentically worshiped and glorified and a clear Gospel continue to be the real magic bullet. But we have an unquestioned confidence in the power of technique.
Just to be clear, I am a fan of contemporary praise music. It has allowed me to express my heart for Jesus in a way that the hymns I grew up with in large part do not. My concern is not with praise music, as it is with most people my age. I am not a “hymnophile.” My concern is about the confidence in technique vs authenticity.
I think I have heard more bad praise music by more bad praise teams than I ever heard bad hymns. It’s painful. While congregations could sing hymns energetically and naturally, they are being forced into forms that are constricting and inauthentic for them. How many times have I seen praise teams composed of 50 and 60 years old being looked at by other 50 and 60 year olds who have to be wondering “what are we doing?” And yet they do it. People will come if we do this. And yet they don’t. Everyone is discouraged and yet the praise music rolls on.
Give Aigner’s article a read. Worth thinking about.