Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Tozer was a Pharisee!

Occasionally I upset a few people with what I blog about. For instance, a few people have thought that this post was way off base and so I am a "Pharisee" because I don't feel like "Friends in Low Places" to be an appropriate song for church (or anywhere for that matter.)

Now, my opinion is really not worth two cents, so I thought I would post a few quotes from someone whose opinion is really worth something when you look at the impact they have had in Christianity, even though he is no longer living. So, here's a little bit of A.W. Tozer on worship and the Church.
A religious mentality characterized by timidity and lack of moral courage has given us to a flabby Christianity, intellectually impoverished, dull, repetitious and to a great many persons just plain boring. This is peddled as the very faith of our fathers in direct lineal descent from Christ and the apostles. We spoon-feed this insipid pabulum to our inquiring youth and, to make it palatable, spice it up with carnal amusements filched from the unbelieving world. It is easier to entertain than to instruct, it is easier to follow degenerate public taste than to think for oneself, so too many of our evangelical leaders let their minds atrophy while they keep their fingers nimble operating religious gimmicks to bring in the curious crowds.
Yes, I don't think Tozer would be real comfortable with "Friends in Low Places" at church, and I don't think he was real big on "seeker sensitive" either!
We must have a new reformation. There must come a violent break with the irresponsible, amusement-mad paganized psuedo-religion which passes today for the faith of Christ and which is being spread all over the world by unspiritual men employing unscriptural methods to achieve their ends.
This next quote is great considering that today churches aren't just running "like" nightclubs, but now there are churches that "are" nightclubs - with the pastors drinking it up just like everyone else!
We are running our churches the way you would run a club. I wish we might get back again to worship so that when people come into the church they instantly fall on their faces and worship God.
So much for "seeker sensitive"!
Some of these attractions that we have to win people and keep them coming may be fine or they may be cheap. They may be elevated or they may be degrading. They may be artistic or they may be coarse-- it all depends upon who is running the show! But the Holy Spirit is not the center of attraction, and the Lord is not the one who is in charge. We bring in all sorts of antiscriptural and unscriptural claptrap to keep the people happy and keep them coming. As I see it, the great woe is not the presence of these religious toys and trifles--but the fact that they have become a necessity, and the presence of the Eternal Spirit is not in our midst!
Well, I guess A.W. Tozer must have been a Pharisee too!!


  1. Excellent post, Jon. Thanks.

  2. Welcome to the Pharisee Club! Just mail me your dues...

  3. The writings of A.W. Tozer never really interested me (I've never been into reading anything, really), but after reading the excerpts you posted I can see that he has a lot of good to say. While the church we attend would be considered by many that I grew up around to be a "worldly" place of "worship" because we have a worship band, everybody isn't pressured to dress "to the T," and we accept everyone, no matter who they are. With that being said, we are not one of the "sensitive" churches that you posted about. Sin is sin, no matter how you slice it. It is strongly preached that if you do not have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and are walking in His light, then nothing else in the world matters. Just wanted to clarify that....

    As for the karaoke of “Friends in Low Places”.... I definitely agree with you on that one. You will hear no cries of “Pharisee” coming from my direction. I did wonder, however, about the alleged profanity that you mentioned was in the song. Yes, the actual non-album-released lyrics do include what some people consider to be profanity, but I did not hear any of it on the video.

    There’s my $.02....

  4. Angie Davis: It's funny that you make a statement like "Welcome to the Pharisee Club! Just mail me your dues." with such lightheartedness but you and the blog author take playing a silly country song in church with such arrogant seriousness. Joke about being a Pharisee all you want, even if they were the ones physically responsible for the crucifiacation of Jesus and we're constantly made examples of what not to be. Defending yourself with Tozer doesn't float with me. Defend yourself with scripture. I'm more worried about what it says. No offence Tozer.

    What's so wrong with that Garth Brookes song anyway...all it does is reference drinking. When did drinking become a sin? It's not. Being addicted, drunk, or making alcohol any sort of idol is a sin....but biblically - drinking isn't a sin. Don't fire back with the "wine is a mocker" verse either. I know the verses, and like I said, drinking isn't a sin. There was no profanity in the performance of that song either, I'm not sure where that came from.

    They only thing I have against you folks and this blog is that it seems to concentrate more on pointing out flaws in the church rather than concentrating on the lost and discipleship. I still believe the author of this blog is acting like a Pharisee. Period. I made my comments so that he may check himself and run it over with God. Maybe he will see that he is spending too much valuable time searching for ways to criticize the church rather than concentrating on saving the lost, discipleship, and making a difference in a broken world. If he feels that he is doing what God has called him to do with this blog and with his time then so be it. I just think he should stop focusing on bringing growing churches down and grow his own. What he does is between him and God and he will have to answer for it. Just as Perry Noble and whoever else will have to answer for their efforts as well.

  5. I guess anonymous was too afraid to sign their name, but I wanted to mention something to this person.

    If you have a business, and tis failing. Do you then concentrate on growth only? Do you search new areas to spend money advertising? Do you hit the streets promoting your businees that is failing? Or do you first sit downa nd determine what you are doing wrong taht is making your business fail?

    I ask that to say this. As I look at the church world, I see us FAILING. Preachers aren't proclaiming truth anymore. Many years ago preachers preached on principles in the Bible and preached holiness of heart and action and tongue. What is there now? entertainment to get numbers. Churchs which you can attend for a couple years before anyone knows you are there. Churches where kids check into SS by using their fingerprints on a machine.

    I have to agree with Jon Earls. The time has come if we want to "take America back", we must determine where we are wrong and go for the Bible. I also know that Jon is very active in getting new people to God. His church is growing and I am sure is through love not entertainment. I am sure he preaches truth straight from the Bible, and doesnt' sing about drinking.

    Lets go back to the holiness preaching and see souls truly saved again..

    THe drinking thing is in the Bible.. Does the Bible have to outright say that something is sin for it to be wrong? There are enough principles in the Bible that teach us to abstain from such things taht anyone who Loves God and who is more concerned about a holy heart than gettin by with whatever they possibly can will steer clear of the drink and the making light of drinking etc.

    Keep up the good work Jon!

    PS I know these comments were months ago.. but my duct tape needed venting lol