Dr. Pipa will be addressing a subject that is of vital importance: the public worship of God in our churches. Since the corporate worship of God constitutes an essential part of the functioning of the church, the subject of public worship has become prominent and at times controversial in the evangelical community. The ongoing debate regarding this subject during the last few decades has resulted in considerable experimentation with various forms of public worship, and numerous churches now offer contemporary worship services. Consequently, worship in some churches looks and feels decidedly different in the 21 st century than it did earlier in the 20th century.
We have therefore invited Dr. Pipa to open the Scriptures for us to determine what God has revealed to us regarding the subject of public worship. Given the fact that God gives us explicit directions in His Word as to how we are to worship Him, we need to address the urgent question whether our (contemporary) worship in the 21 st century is truly to the glory of God. The importance of this question is underscored by the words of Christ: “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:23-24).
We are hopeful that Dr. Pipa’s exposition of the Scriptures will help us arrive at a clear understanding of the fundamental principles of biblical, God-glorifying worship—and possibly prompt a reformation of our worship practices should this be needed.