Lewis on the Spiritual Value of Music

Today's Worship Quote by C.S. Lewis is another on issues of style as they relate to the music used in worship.

Christian Reflections
By C. S. Lewis

The first and most solid conclusion which (for me) emerges is that both musical parties, the High Brows and the Low, assume far too easily the spiritual value of the music they want. Neither the greatest excellence of a trained performance from the choir, nor the heartiest and most enthusiastic bellowing from the pews, must be taken to signify that any specifically religious activity is going on. It may be so, or it may not.

- C. S. Lewis, "On Church Music," in Christian Reflections (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1967).


Lewis, a non-singer, is obviously pushing the point that true worship is from the heart. See the first chapter of Isaiah to see what God thinks of religious observance without appropriate heart attitude.

Have a great week!

To learn more about Chip Stam and his Worship Quote of the Week, click below.

Stott on the Heart and Mind

Pastors and worship leaders often wrestle with the delicate balance between fact and feeling in worship, between the objective and the subjective aspects of our response to God. Today's Worship Quote of the Week comes from John Stott and deals with the heart and the mind in worship.

Authentic Christianity
By John R. W. Stott

The first characteristic of heart-worship is that it is rational; the mind is fully involved in it. For the 'heart' in Scripture is not simply equivalent to the emotions, as it usually is in common parlance today. In biblical thought the 'heart' is the center of the human personality and is often so used that the intellect is more emphasized than the emotions. Thus, the exhortation in Proverbs 23:26, 'My son, give me your heart,' has often been interpreted as an entreaty for our love and devotion. It has served as a convenient text for many sermons on whole-hearted discipleship. But in reality it is a command to listen, to pay attention, to sit up and take notice, an appeal more for concentration than for consecration."

-John Stott, Christ the Controversialist, InterVarsity Press, 1970, p. 162, as collected in Authentic Christianity: From the Writings of John Stott, compiled by Timothy Dudley-Smith, InterVarsity Press, 1995.


Lord, teach us that heart-worship is mindful worship. Amen!

Have a great week!

To learn more about Chip Stam and his Worship Quote of the Week, click below.