Remembering Professor Carl “Chip” Stam

On Sunday night, May 1, 2011, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary Professor, Chip Stam went to be with the Lord.  His wife, Doris, posted these words from facebook:

With sorrowful joy, we write to tell you that Chip went to be with his Lord Jesus at 7pm tonight, May 1. He is now free from sin and rejoicing in God’s love–all because he is forgiven and the perfect righteousness of Christ is his by faith. He has gone now to a better country, a heavenly one (Hebrews 11:13-16). Although his outer body wasted away, God has prepared for him an eternal weight of glory and inheritance beyond all comparison (2 Corinthians 4:16-17). Chip fought the good fight, finished the race, kept the faith (2 Timothy 4:7). He did not fear death, knowing that the victory was already won through the cross and resurrection of Jesus. All praise to God!

For many years, Professor Stam produced a worship quote of the week  In a recent edition, Chip said:

Truth be told: My health situation is worsening. The LORD has put it on my heart to prepare for death, whether it be days from now or years from now. I am comfortable and content and confident in the arms of the Savior.

Dennis on Professor Stam:

It was my esteemed pleasure to sing under Chip as a member of the KBC men’s chorale in three different recent seasons.  It was in those times of rehearsals and worship services that I grew to know Chip, not personally, but spiritually.  I learned so much from Chip about Christ through his explanations of our choral pieces and his personal times of sharing his testimony.

It seemed as though I learned more in a day’s rehearsal with Chip than I did in an entire semester of particular music classes in college!  His insight, analogies, humor, Scriptural wisdom, and ability to communicate spoke directly to me and instantly made me a better person, conductor, leader, and minister.

Moreover, it was Chip Stam who indirectly introduced me to the Gettys (indirectly).  I remember attending a KBC concert “Journey into Worship” where they brought in Keith Getty and Stuart Townend and we sang “In Christ Alone” for the first time.  Later, I remember Chip (who was great friends with the Gettys) passing out a brand new hymn that was unpublished at the time for the chorale to sight-read and talk about.  The hymn was “Behold the Lamb (The Communion Hymn)”.  The Getty’s music has changed my life and I owe it to Chip.

I am thankful and grateful for the brief influence of Chip in my life and can only thank God for his influence on the lives of an amazing amount of STBS students and world-wide ministers of music.

Zach on Professor Stam:

I was saddened yesterday to hear that Carl “Chip” Stam had passed away.  Professor Stam had been in a long battle with cancer and definitely “fought the good fight.”  As a worship major, I had the privilege of sitting under him in many classes at Southern Seminary from 2002-2010.  Professor Stam was always upbeat and a model of a joyous human being.  His joy was an overflow of His love for Jesus Christ.  Although we were not close personally, I was deeply affected by his teaching.  His classes were instrumental in shaping my worship worldview.  He challenged each of us to make the Gospel the cornerstone of our ministries and lives.

Our momentary sadness over his passing quickly turns to rejoicing as we know He is now in the presence of the Lord.  I am thankful to have known this faithful servant of the Lord!

Here is a song appropriate for this time called “It Is Not Death to Die” .

John on Professor Stam:

One of my treasured memories of Chip is the phrase he often used right before a Kentucky Baptist Men’s Chorale performance: “Let’s go change a life.” He was convinced that scriptural truth sung as excellent choral music could have that impact on those present. And that conviction is what motivates those of us who teach and direct choirs in worship. His enthusiasm for that opportunity never failed to rekindle my enthusiasm for participating in life-changing art. There is no way of measuring the impact we had on listeners; but thanks to Chip’s spirit and intensity, there is certainly no denying the impact on those of us singing under his leadership. I am grateful to have known someone who embodied a passion for great choral music that was always servant to his passion for loving Jesus. Being around him changed my life.


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