Worship (Part 3) – Clarifications

Points of middle ground: the unity of church servants and the Holy Spirit.

A. Preaching and the aesthetic of musical worship are not in opposition towards each other. Just because preaching is the pinnacle of worship does not make musical praise any less important. The music provides the crescendo towards the great clash of God’s word being taught. They must be unified and not devalued in any overemphasis or misdirection. Although it may survive, a church does not thrive with great preaching and a no aesthetic joy of musical praise. Songs of praise make up a major part of the Scriptures and have no less value than the epistles and pastoral letters. Singing tends to move the affections greater than mere oration, and this is a great triumph of God’s design of the human heart. Art is incalculably valuable to the Christian life because of its creative portrayal of God. The aim here is the correction of the current devaluing of Biblical exposition and exultation at the pulpit – hopefully it is not seen as an over-correction.

B. The Holy Spirit is the vitality of worship. The great error one may delve from my past posts on worship is the excessive responsibility of man. Towards great clarity: man can only worship inasmuch as God has worked worship in Him. Man’s responsibility hinges on working out what God works in. These posts have all centered around the methodology of God’s gracious bestowal of the ability to worship Him. Now carrying on with full excuse, it is a dangerous idiom of Christianity to call the Holy Spirit the “great worship leader.” Although this is true, it is quite limiting to the nature of the Holy Spirit. He is not a mere presence for communal gatherings, He is a power for Christian obedience. The latter is the truest form of daily worship. So let us not lean towards seeing the Holy Spirit as a mere communal deity.

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