“Ancient-Future Worship”

I remember writing book reports growing up and I always thought that it was a peculiar practice. What value was there in regurgitating what the author said? Now a little bit wiser I can assure there is some value to this practice, as it ensures (or not) that you understand the author’s purpose for writing the book and the thesis therein. It also gives the one writing the review an opportunity to affirm or critique the author.

174px-Zoso_John_Paul_Jones_sigil_interlaced_triquetra_overlaying_circle.svgThis is my first book review here on TalkingWorship.com and it will come from arguably the most influential book on my worship ministry. Influential in that it was the first book I read that truly explored what worship is and how it is enacted and in that it has provided avenues to other authors and books to read in my pursuit of worship and liturgical studies.

Here is Baker Publishing Group’s summary of the book:

“God has a story. Worship does God’s story.Read More »

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Stage Presence and the Worship Leader

All sorts of websites, blogs, and resource pages have “Stage Presence for Worship Leader” articles and quite frankly they are just not helpful. Well, not for me anyway. “Know where the Spirit is taking you”, “Pray beforehand”, and “Read your congregation” have no practical ramifications. This article is going to actually offer practical ways to improve your worship leading stage presence.

Now, to stay consistent with my attempt at reconciling theology and praxis, let us look at a couple of theological ideas that shed insight onto what it means to have good stage presence as a worship leader.

The idea that worship leaders usher the congregation into the presence of the Lord is an incredibly misleading theology that needs to be reconsidered. God calls His Church to the assembly and He is our host. Therefore, in our response to assemble we enter into the presence of God. For worship leaders this ought to be liberating! You are not responsible for bringing the congregation into the presence of the Lord. By the faithful’s decision to assemble they have already entered the presence of God.Read More »

What Is “Biblical” Worship?

The purpose of this website is primarily for myself. It is an outlet where I can translate the thoughts and ideas in my head to writing. This will be achieved in several ways: writing my own original articles, writing book reviews (coming soon), and writing article reviews. I read published academic material so the articles will frequently appear from peer-reviewed journals. It is important to interact with other authors of the same academic field so that is what I intend to do here today.

Crop_Book_of_Isaiah_2006-06-06Michael A. Farley is an adjunct professor of theological studies at St. Louis University. His article “What Is Biblical Worship? Biblical Hermeneutics and Evangelical Theologies of Worship” appeared in the September 2008 issue of the Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society. This article brings up an important topic that evangelical worship leaders must study and be able to articulate their own theology and philosophy. How do we discern what is biblical worship and therefore our theology of worship?Read More »

Turns Out You Are A Theologian Too!

BREAKING NEWS: THIS JUST IN – It turns out you do not need a Doctor of Philosophy in Theology to be a theologian!

Yes, I said it. You do not need to have fancy advanced theologapple-256263_1280ical degrees to be a theologian.
Now before all my academic friends start blasting me out of the water for this statement, let me say this: I personally desire to obtain a Master of Divinity and Doctor of Philosophy in Theology. Academia is a passion for me and I desire to join the conversations of some of my favorite theologians. Education is a joy for me!Read More »

“We’re Gonna Need A Class For This…”

Evangelical Christian conversations have a topical turnaround that competes with pop radio. One week viral articles are about topic A and the next week they are about topic Z. Conversations are discussed and then dropped as if they never happened at all.

ClassroomOne such conversation that I imagine will be out of the mainstream dialogue shortly is that of evangelical liturgicalism. Robert Webber’s Ancient-Future work (Baker Publishing) has breach
ed the spotlight and Melanie Ross has written a book about this supposed contradiction in Evangelical versus Liturgical?: Defying a Dichotomy (2014).

Some churches have simply passed over this dialogue believing that there is no place for such practices (the reasons for this can be numerous: Roman Catholics do that, liturgy is dry and boring, etc.), some have applied certain practices to be “hip”, and others have developed a genuine interest in a liturgical approach to worship.Read More »