Or sermon and worship?
In the church where I first came to faith, there was a very ‘high’ view of the preached Word. In that particular culture the worship was very definitely the ‘bit before the sermon’. In others, the sermon is seen as the ‘bit after the worship’. It depends on your point of view, really.
I spent most of yesterday with a number of London’s Baptist ‘grafters’ – the Small Church Connexion. These men and women are engaged in a long steep climb to establish their small churches, often in adverse circumstances. Not that you would have thought it from the worship, mind you. The worship was not in the least heavy or sombre. Not only that, but in the hands of an exceptionally gifted worship leader it became almost difficult to tell where his worship-leading ended and my preaching began. The two were woven together in such a way that neither could be described as overture or finale, but both were movements in a symphony whose sounds were drawn both from the room in which we worshipped and the contexts in which these people serve.
It was a privilege to be there, and I trust that worship and sermon will far outlive the event itself.