On Certain Forms of Contemporary Worship…

There is a familiarity, an ease, almost a glibness toward God in this worship that communicates to no one that he is a consuming fire, or that he is angry with the wicked every day, or that his eyes are too pure to behold iniquity, or that he will by no means clear the guilty, or that he dwells in unapproachable light, surrounded by a glory that no man has seen or can see. In this man-centered worship, in this worship that partakes of the atmosphere of a sales convention, the divine grace and love inevitably become mere niceness, almost politeness, not the astonishing stoop down to the unworthy and hell-deserving sinners that the Bible reveals us to be. And in that worship the cross absolutely must become considerably less than the torture and terror and the humiliation and the disgrace and the abasement of the Son of God that was absolutely required to pay the price of our sin and guilt and so satisfy the demands of God’s holiness in order that we might be saved. The cross must be lightened up. You can’t have anything that grim in a meeting whose spirit and atmosphere are so blithe and cheerful, in many ways so secular.–Robert Rayburn

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