Selecting Music for Worship (Part 3): Know Your Church

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Preparing music for worship is a task that requires diligence and study. Church musicians should, of course, take the time needed to practice and rehearse the music itself. But simply knowing the music well is not sufficient to make wise and helpful choices in selecting music for worship. There is more to consider. In previous…



Selecting Music for Worship (Part 2): Know Theology

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How well do you know the music your church sings in worship? Can you think, for example, of a song that teaches that sin corrupts and deceives the heart? Or a song that unfolds the work of the Trinity in our salvation? If you were to measure the depth of doctrine and the breadth of truth…



Selecting Music for Worship (Part 1): Know the Word

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Leading God’s people in song is a great joy. It is a rewarding responsibility to sing and play psalms and hymns and spiritual songs in praise to God. But like other aspects of worship—reading and preaching God’s Word, lifting up prayers in behalf of the congregation—with the joy comes labor. It takes time to plan…



Speaking the Truth in Love

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One of the sins that we must continually fight against is the sin of pride. This is especially true for those of us who love doctrine. Even in such a glorious endeavor as studying and pondering the truths of God’s Word, pride can too easily find its way into our thinking and taint our efforts….



How Long, O Lord?

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Worship propels us to mission. And our mission is to go and to make disciples (Matthew 28:19). We want others to find and know the same joy and peace that we experience in Christ. We want others to come and add their voices to the prayers and praise of God’s people. We are zealous of…



Doing the Work of an Evangelist

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Now I saw, upon a time, when he was walking in the fields, that he was (as he was wont) reading in his Book, and greatly distressed in his mind; and as he read, he burst out, as he had done before, crying, What shall I do to be saved?I also saw that he looked…



Echoes of Eden

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One of the books I have especially looked forward to reading this summer is Echoes of Eden: Reflections on Christianity, Literature, and the Arts by Jerram Barrs (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2013). As a teacher of Fine Arts, I was intrigued by the title and curious as to how Barrs would navigate a subject to which…



The Baptist Psalmody and Abram Poindexter

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When the Southern Baptist Convention met in Nashville in 1851, the hymnal that was recommended for use in all the churches was The Baptist Psalmody. When The Baptist Psalmody was published in 1850 by the Southern Baptist Publication Society, its editors, Basil Manly and Basil Manly Jr., sought to include not only the older, proven…