One of the popular trends that continues to build steam is the dominance of “contemporary” worship services. Pop music and a casual atmosphere have replaced the pipe organs and reverence as the church has sought cultural relevance. Many contemporary services eliminate Bible reading, prayer, preaching on sin and salvation, and hymns in favor of videos, simplistic praise songs, dramas, and sermons focused on “practical advice” and “relevance” (as if the Gospel itself is irrelevant). Go to a Brethren church, a Vineyard, a Church of Christ, a non-denominational megachurch, or even a PCA church, and you are likely to hear the same worship songs and the same books recommended.
Has this not impoverished worship? Compare the average contemporary worship service with this Presbyterian liturgy. Do you see a difference? Note the prayers, note the Bible reading, the confession of sin, the communion, the prominence of prayer. Traditional worship tends to be more formal and reverent than contemporary worship. But as Michael Horton said, it’s more of a question of substance vs. shallowness than traditional vs. contemporary. Much of contemporary worship is based on a flawed purpose and the discarding of tradition.