“Sing praises to the Lord, O you His saints, and give thanks to His holy name.” Psalm 30:4
As Choir members (soloists, vocalists in ensembles or Praise Teams), we are in a position of leadership in Worship Ministry every time that we are in the loft or on the platform.
We need to have a clear understanding of praise and worship in order to both personally worship the Lord and to lead others in worship. First, we must understand the difference between praise and worship.
Consider this fact: the Bible speaks about praise and worship in distinctive ways, sometimes using both words in the same passage of scripture.
* “O Lord, open Thou my lips, and my mouth shall show forth Thy praise.” Psalm 51:15
* “Make a joyful noise to God, all the earth; sing the glory of His name; give to Him glorious praise!” Psalm 66:1
* “I will praise the name of God with a song; I will magnify Him with thanksgiving.” Psalm 69:30
* “Praise ye the Lord; O give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good; for His mercy endures forever. Who can utter the mighty acts of the Lord? Who can show forth all His praise?” Psalm 106:1 & 2
In the verses above, certain facts about praise begin to emerge.
1. Praise is outward. It is sung or spoken; it is uttered; it is shown forth.
2. Praise focuses on the attributes of God and what He has done.
3. Praise is obviously important, for we are told repeatedly to do it.
Now, lets look at some verses that talk about worship.
* “Honor and majesty are before Him, strength and beauty are in His sanctuary. Give unto the Lord, O ye kindreds of the people, give unto the Lord glory and strength. Give unto the Lord the glory due unto His name; bring an offering, and come into His courts. O worship the Lord in the beauty of Holiness; fear before Him, all the earth.”‘ Psalm 96:6 – 9
* (Jesus speaking) “The hour is coming, and now is, when true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such people to worship Him. God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:23 & 24
* “I appeal to you therfore, brethren, by the mercies of God , to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” Romans 12:1
* “Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe; for our God is a consuming fire.” Hebrews 12:28
From these scriptures, we see several truths about worship.
1. Worship is our response to who God is and what He has done, as we lovingly and reverently choose to acknowledge God’s supremacy over all of Creation and his ultimate worth as Creator, Sustainer, Savior, Comforter, and the Author and Finisher of our faith.
2. Worship must be done in honesty, knowing that God sees our hearts. We worship Him truthfully as we come to Him in a spirit of humility and acknowledge our own faults and even our struggles with faith and doubt. Truthful worship honors God because we are trusting our weaknesses to Him, knowing that He is good.
3. Worship that is acceptable and holy to God involves a commitment of all our our lives, choosing to live in a way that honors God and give Him glory. He has sacrificed His all for us; and we, in turn, become living sacrifices to Him as we commit ourselves to living reverently. Notice that the physical (presenting of our bodies and our lives as an offering to the Lord) becomes spiritual (our spiritual worship) as we respond to God’s mercies by lovingly giving ourselves.
4. No matter what has happened in our lives, true worship involves choosing gratitude to God as we recognize that what is temporary is only part of reality. We look forward in faith, with the assurance that the eternal reality we will someday experience in full will replace all sorrow and pain with joy and the complete knowledge of how much we are loved.
With the fundamental understanding that praise is choosing to express our acknowledgement of who God is and what He has done and that worship is our loving and reverent response to God’s goodness and love in every area of our lives, let us continue to focus on the role of God’s singers in praise and worship. Although we are always concerned with musical excellence, that concern is secondary to the intentional commitment of our voices in praise and our hearts and lives in worship.
“As a worship pastor and a choir leader, I am constantly desiring to walk the line where authenticity and excellence meet, ministering deeply to the hearts of people, and, more importantly to the heart of God.”
– Travis Cottrell, Christian Artist, worship pastor, songwriter
Let’s look at a Psalm that puts our lives and God’s supremacy into perspective.
English Standard Version (ESV)
Bless the Lord, O My Soul
A Psalm of David.
103 Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless his holy name! 2 Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits; 3 who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, 4 who redeems your life from the pit, who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, 5 who satisfies you with good so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
6 The Lord works righteousness and justice for all who are oppressed. 7 He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the people of Israel. 8 The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. 9 He will not always chide, nor will he keep his anger forever. 10 He does not deal with us according to our sins, nor repay us according to our iniquities. 11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; 12 as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us. 13 As a father shows compassion to his children, so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear Him. 14 For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust.
15 As for man, his days are like grass; he flourishes like a flower of the field; 16 for the wind passes over it, and it is gone, and its place knows it no more. 17 But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him, and his righteousness to children’s children, 18 to those who keep his covenant and remember to do his commandments. 19 The Lord has established his throne in the heavens, and his kingdom rules over all.
20 Bless the Lord, O you his angels, you mighty ones who do his word, obeying the voice of his word! 21 Bless the Lord, all his hosts, his ministers, who do his will! 22 Bless the Lord, all his works, in all places of his dominion. Bless the Lord, O my soul!
So, WHY DO WE PRAISE THE LORD?
1) Because the very greatness of God demands it.
2) Because we have been very blessed.
3) Because it helps us to focus on God and not on ourselves.
4) Because praise helps to prepare our hearts for God to do a work in them.
WHY DO WE SING PRAISES TO GOD AS A CHOIR?
1) Because it is Biblical.
2) Because it is a powerful way to express praise to God
3) Because it adds energy and life to the times of focused, congregational worship
4) Because a choir is able to prepare expressions of praise that a congregation can not.
WHAT ARE SOME THINGS WE MUST ALWAYS REMEMBER WHEN SINGING IN CHOIR?
1) We are a singing group, not a group of singers. We are joining our voices together in praise, with the ultimate goal of bringing glory to God.
This choir is aware that part of communicating the message effectively is eye contact and facial expression. They are visually engaged in worship when they sing.
2) We must do all we can do to help further an atmosphere conducive to leading God’s people in worship each week.
a. We must have invested the time to be prepared (musically and spiritually).
b. We must be ready to serve the Lord through worship ministry, bringing a servant’s attitude.
c. Our countenance (facial expression and radiance) should be a reflection of worship and praise as well.
d. We must be authentic worshippers who seek to live a lifestyle of worship throughout the week.
3) The reason that we have come together is not to sing. It is to worship. Singing is a part of our worship as we seek to bring glory to God and to express our praise to Him, but the heart of worship is our desire to intentionally express God’s ultimate worth through all that we are.
“But I, through the abundance of Your steadfast love, will enter Your house, I will worship toward Your holy temple in reverence, and awe of You.” Psalm 5:7
“Exalt the Lord our God, and worship at His footstool; for He is Holy.” Psalm 99:5
“Honor and majesty are before Him, strength and beauty are in His sanctuary. Give unto the Lord, O ye kindreds of the people, give unto the Lord glory and strength. Give unto the Lord the glory due unto His name; bring an offering, and come into His courts. O worship the Lord in the beauty of Holiness; fear before Him, all the earth.”‘ Psalm 96:6 – 9
“And Jesus answered him, ‘It is written, you shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only shall you serve.”‘ Luke 4:7
(Jesus speaking) “The hour is coming, and now is, when true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such people to worship Him. God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:23 & 24
“I appeal to you therfore, brethren, by the mercies of God , to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” Romans 12:1
“Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe; for our God is a consuming fire.” Hebrews 12:28
“And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying, ‘Great and wonderful are Thy deeds, O Lord God the Almighty! Just and true are Thy ways, O King of the ages! Who shall not fear and glorify Thy name, O Lord? For Thou alone art Holy. All nations shall come and worship Thee, for Thy judgements have been revealed.” Revelation 15:3 & 4
The above post includes teaching about worship and praise shared with our Adult Choir by Travis L. Boyd
FOR FURTHER STUDY ON WORSHIP AND PRAISE
(Below, you will find information about praise and worship from a leadership course about what it means to praise God and what it means to worship God. The information has been slightly and condensed and edited.) The web address for the resource found below is http://leresources.com/praise_and_worship.html
Praise and worship are distinct, yet closely related activities.
A. Praise is an outward expression of your love for God. It is a natural and very important part of worship, which is our loving response to the presence of God in our lives.
1. Praise is a choice. You can choose to express your love for God at any time, and in any situation. You can praise Him for who He is, for what He has done, and for what He has promised to do.
2. Your praise can be addressed directly to God, but it is often directed to others around us, proclaiming His greatness and encouraging others to praise Him. Praise can even be directed to the spiritual forces in the heavenlies, proclaiming the greatness of the true God.
3. Though God certainly knows when we are in an attitude of praise and hears the praises of our hearts, we must remember that, by definition, praise must be expressed. If you have thought about something nice regarding someone you know but have not expressed those thoughts verbally, you have not praised him or her. Within gatherings such as the congregation and within relationships, praise is expressed by voicing our love and admiration, often specifically mentioning the attributes or actions of the person being praised. Praise can be written, spoken or sung; but it must be expressed.
4. When you praise God, He will respond by manifesting His presence to you. When you experience God’s presence, you are able to respond directly to Him, and tell Him how much you love Him. That response is called worship. In worship, you experience intimacy with God, and express your adoration to Him.
B. Praise is the gateway through which we must pass to enter into the presence of God and worship Him.
1. Praise and worship are the activities of heaven and are also very important for the Body of Christ on Earth.
2. If you do not learn to praise God as He wants to be praised, you will fail to experience His presence, and your worship will be lacking.
3. You were created to praise and worship God. (See Romans 12:1) When you give yourself to the activity of praise and worship, you are fulfilling the purpose for which you are made. Because of this, the praise and worship of God brings a fulfillment and satisfaction that nothing else in the universe can bring.
C. It pleases God when we praise Him.
1. The Psalms tell us that God comes and manifests His presence in our midst when we praise Him. He inhabits the praises of His people!
2. The importance that God places on praise is revealed by the frequency of scriptural exhortations about it. The most frequent exhortation in all of the Bible is to PRAISE THE LORD! (It is also interesting to note that the longest book in the Bible is the book of Psalms — a book of praise songs!)
D. It is important to God how you praise and worship Him.
1. The example of the tabernacle of Moses in the Old Testament shows us that God has the right to be praised and worshipped as HE desires. When the people chose to disregard His instructions and follow their own ideas and traditions, He was displeased!
2. If we are to praise and worship God, we must look to His Word to understand how He desires to be praised and worshipped. We must allow God to instruct us about how we are to offer up our praise and commit to doing so!
What is Praise?
A Remember the definition of praise: Biblical praise is the free expression of love and appreciation to God.
1. It is important that you love God. Jesus said that the greatest commandment is that you love the Lord your God. It is also important, however, for that love to be expressed outwardly.
2 . A husband and wife may love each other; but if that love is never expressed, if there are no loving words or actions exchanged, their relationship is not good. A general principle is: When love is not expressed, it shrivels up and dies. When love is expressed, it grows.
3. It is important for your love of God to be expressed outwardly. That outward expression of your love for Him is PRAISE.
B. How can we express our love for God in a way that pleases Him?
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength.” — Mk 12:30
1. We must open our hearts to God and not attempt to withhold any part of our lives and hearts from Him. He knows all about us, anyway.
2. Because we are emotional beings, we must not suppress genuine emotion in expressing our praise.
3. Praise must come from our innermost being (our soul), which involves choosing to surrender our will. The decision to praise is a decision of the will.
4. Even though we are emotional beings, our decision to praise the Lord must not be based upon feelings or circumstances. In the Psalms, we can see that David spoke to his soul even in the midst of despair and commanded it, “Praise the Lord, O my soul!” David made a decision, an act of the will, that he would praise the Lord even if he did not feel like it. Psalm 146 says, “I will praise the Lord all my life, I will sing praise to Him as long as I live!” That is a choice! Very often, the times when we do not feel like praising are the very times we need to praise God most. We need to decide to praise Him because He is worthy of praise, even when we do not feel like it! When we make that choice, we are expressing love for God from our very souls.
5. Our minds must be fixed upon God, and our praise must be more than simple repetition. This involves our intellect. This is important! Some people express praise to God that has no meaning. They just say, over and over, “Praise the Lord. Praise the Lord.” God wants your love to be expressed with your minds. To praise God deeply, you need to express a real understanding of who God is.
4 Our strength is also to be employed in expressing our love for God through praise. Praise involves physical activity. The Bible talks of David “praising God with all of his might.” (2 Sam 6:14). That is expressing love with your strength.
C. Why is Praise Important?
Eph 1:6,12,14 and 1 Pet 2:9 state that one of God’s purposes for saving us is to be a people who would show forth His praises in the earth.
1. Praise aligns our hearts to God.
2. Praise opens our hearts to receive from Him.
3. Praise clears away distractions. Only when we choose to focus on praising the Lord can we clear our minds of other concerns.
4. Praise builds faith. As we choose to focus on praising God rather than upon our problems, faith rises within us.
5. Praise brings His presence. When we truly praise God, His presence is manifested in your midst, often in a very tangible way. We know that God is present everywhere, at all times and that there is nothing that is out of His control (His omipresence). We also know that, for every person who is a true believer in Jesus Christ, God lives within that individual in a special way. (When you trusted in Jesus as Savior, the Holy Spirit of God took up residence in your heart. He is always with you to comfort, to enlighten, and to teach you as you read His Word. You may not feel His presence, but by faith you can know that He is there. This is God’s indwelling presence.) What the Bible speaks of when scripture says that God inhabits the praise of His people (Psalm 22:3) is His manifest presence.
a) God’s presence is manifest when He chooses to make His presence known. It is when He makes Himself tangible to you. You experience Him and enter into a spiritual intimacy with Him. This is also when His power is revealed. (Power is an outflow of communion with Him.)
b) When we experience the manifest presence of God, He is there to heal, to comfort, to energize His gifts, or to manifest His power. If you want to experience God’s presence, and see God work in power in your life, the solution is to learn to praise Him.
6. Praise defeats the enemy. See Psalm 149: The first six verses give us a beautiful description of praise, but in verse 7 and following, it changes to a description of warfare. There are times when you know you are under attack. Everything seems to go wrong. Many times, it is just after you have made a step forward in your spiritual life. Sometimes it is when you are just getting ready to begin a new area of ministrWhat do you do when the enemy attacks? One solution is to praise God.
How is Praise Expressed?
In the Old Testament, there are seven Hebrew words used for praise. Each one of these describes a specific way of expressing your love to God.
A. The Physical Expression of Praise.
1. Yadah and Towdah (to praise with lifted hands).
a) The first two words for praise are very similar in meaning. They are Yadah and Towdah. They both come from the Hebrew word that means “to extend the hand”. These two describe an expression of praise by extending the hands upward to God in adoration.
b) “Yadah” is the most frequently used word for praise in the Bible. Most of the exhortations to praise use this word.
c) The lifting of hands is an outward expression of love, dependency, submission, and appreciation.
d) When you raise your hands to God, it tells your mind that you are dealing with someone greater than you are.
2. Barak (To bend the knee in praise, to bow down before).
a) “Barak” describes an expression of praise that uses not just the hands, but the whole body. It is the expression of praise by kneeling or bowing down to God.
b) When we bow down before God, we are acknowledging Him as our Lord, the King of the universe. It is very appropriate to express our praise to Him in this way.
c) Your bodies were designed by God to be instruments to express His praise. It is valid to stand, kneel, lift your hands, or fall down on your face before Him. God wants you to be free to express your praise to him with your bodies.
B. The Musical Expression of Praise.
Music is spiritually significant for a number of reasons. Music makes you sensitive to hear God (2 Kings 3:14-16), it communicates spiritual truth (Col 3:16), and (if played under the anointing of God) it can drive away spiritual enemies (1 Sam 16:14-23).
1. Zamar (to praise God with a musical instrument).
a) Zamar comes from a root word that means “to pluck strings of a musical instrument.” This word is used in several passages, including Psalm 135:3 and Psalm 147:7. (This is the Hebrew word we get the word “Psalms” from. The Psalms were songs to be sung together with instruments.)
b) The Bible indicates that the instrumental part of the music is important. Psalm 150 exhorts us to praise God on string, wind, and percussion instruments. The Israelites used all the instruments they had as instruments for praising God.
2. Tehillah (to express praise in song).
a) The word “tehillah comes from a root word that means “to sing.”
b) It is used in such passages as Psalm 34:1-2. “His praise (tehillah) shall continually be in my mouth” and Psalm 100:4, “Enter His courts with praise (tehillah).”
c) Not all singing is praise, even if you are singing hymns or praise songs. Singing songs of praise becomes praise when you are singing to the Lord as an expression of love to Him.
d) In Eph 5:19 and Col 3:16, Paul describes three categories of songs to sing to the Lord.
Psalms – The Psalms are Biblical songs. Even though we do not know the original tunes to the Psalms, we can take the words of the Psalms and set them to music and sing these inspired songs to God.
Hymns – Hymns are songs of praise to God that are not part of the Bible. The modern expressions of praise we sing today, as well as the hymns written through the history of the church, would all be included in the category of hymns.
Spiritual Songs – Spiritual songs are songs given by the Spirit, for a particular moment. They are a spontaneous expression of love for God. There are two categories of spiritual songs:
C. The Free Expression of Joy
Sometimes God wants you to be deep and thoughtful in your expression of love, but at other times the love inside of you wants to burst forth in free expression. There are times when you want to shout it from the rooftops! There are two words that describe this kind of praise:
1. Halal (to celebrate)
a) “halal” is a Hebrew word that means to celebrate.
b) Halal means to express your love for God by joyously and freely celebrating before Him.
c) Biblical descriptions of Halal involve clapping hands, dancing, shouting, and rejoicing before the Lord. This word is used in such passages as Psalm 47:1-6 and Psalm 150.
d) It is from the word “halal” that we get the word “hallelujah”. (Hallelujah is an exhortation to have a halal for Yahweh).
In 2nd Samuel 6, when the ark was brought into Jerusalem, David took off his robe and danced before the Lord. (That was halal.) His wife, Michal, watched David dance and despised him for it. When he returned, she criticized him and accused him of making a fool of himself by dancing before the Lord.
David responded to Michal by saying that it was all right to look foolish for God. He told her that he would continue to be foolish for God, because everything he had was given to him by God.
The passage concludes by mentioning God’s judgment on Michal for criticizing David’s dancing. Because she despised David’s joyful praise, God made Michal barren for the rest of her life. The lesson here is to be careful of criticizing other people’s praise.
2. Shabach (to shout).
a) “Shabach” means to praise in a loud tone, to shout, or to shout in triumph. It is used in such passages as Ps 117:1 and Ps 147:12. This form of praise is common in the Bible.
b) In Nehemiah, the people rejoiced before the Lord; and the noise of their celebration was so loud that it could be heard a long way off. They were shouting before the Lord.
c) Rev 19:1, 4-6: In this description of heavenly praise, the roar of all the heavenly hosts shouting their praises is so loud that it sounds like thunder.
If your praise is weak, your worship will be shallow. If you enter into the high praises of God and praise Him with all of your might, you will find that your high praise will be followed by a time of deep worship.
Note: The worship resource above, copied and edited here, can be found in its entirety at http://leresources.com/praise_and_worship.html
More about praise from http://www.allaboutprayer.org/how-to-praise-and-worship-god-faq.htm
When we worship, we are expressing our reverent love and devotion to God. Worship is the act of doing something like reading the Bible, praying, or singing. However, worship is not limited to only to these things. When we praise, we are expressing our admiration for God; we are lifting Him up in exaltation. Praise is the act of celebrating or boasting about the Lord. Praise can be done through song, poems, or confessing the goodness of God to others. We should be giving God our praise and worship through our daily lives. We can do this at home, in our work place, on the bus – wherever we are! Praise and worship is a way of life, the very heartbeat of our relationship with God.
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Praise To God – The Importance of Praise
Praise to God is what we offer in acknowledgement of God’s excellent being. You might think that praise is the same as saying “thank you,” but there is a difference. Thanksgiving describes our attitude toward what God has done, while praise is offered for who God is. Psalm 18:3 says “I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise…”
All believers are commanded to praise God! In fact, Isaiah 43:21 explains that praise is one reason we were created, “This people I have formed for Myself; they shall declare My praise.” Hebrews 13:15 confirms this: “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise – the fruit of lips that confess his name.”
Praise originates in a heart full of love toward God. Deuteronomy 6:5 says, “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” Are you a Christian today? If so, you know that you love God because He first loved you! Without God’s love, any praise you can offer is hollow. Love, born from a relationship with God through Jesus Christ, is an essential part of your praise.
Praise To God – How to Praise God
How can you bring praise to God? What can you do to make it an integral part of your life? Praise can be expressed in song, in verse, or in prayer and it is to be done continuously! Psalm 34:1 instructs, “I will extol the LORD at all times; his praise will always be on my lips.” Psalm 71:6 says, “From birth I have relied on you; you brought me forth from my mother’s womb. I will ever praise you.”
Praise to God is expressed outwardly through our everyday actions, as well as inwardly in our thoughts. Praise is an act of Christian worship.
“Where do I begin?” you may ask. “How do I start praising God?” If praising God is new to you, try praising God for who He is to you, personally. Proclaim that God’s goodness is without measure; it is abundant and overflowing! Here are some ways to get started:
• Praise God for His holiness, mercy, and justice (2 Chronicles 20:21, Psalm 99:3-4).
• Praise God for His grace (Ephesians 1:6).
• Praise Him for His goodness (Psalm 135:3).
• Praise God for His kindness (Psalm 117).
• Praise God for His salvation (Ephesians 2:8-9)
Praise to God can be offered anywhere! In time, it will become as normal as taking a breath. Sometimes we praise God inwardly as in Psalm 9:2, “I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.” Other times we have opportunity to give glory and praise to our God publicly. Psalm 22:22 says, “I will declare your name to my brothers; in the congregation I will praise you.” Search out opportunities to bring praise to God!
Praise To God – Who Praises God?
Praise to God, while offered particularly by His children as the freewill expression of grateful hearts, will one day be offered by everyone! The Bible says that when He comes again, all mankind will praise Him and acknowledge Him as Lord. He is King over all the earth. When we know Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, our hearts long to praise His name. Philippians 2:9-11 tells us His name represents His being, describing who He is, “Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”
The Bible also records:
• All nature praises God (Psalm 148:7-10).
• The sun, moon, and stars praise Him (Psalm 19:1 and 148:3).
• The angels praise Him (Psalm 148:2).
• Even the wrath of men is used by God to praise Himself (Psalm 76:10).
• Children are to be taught to praise God (Psalm 78:4).
Praise To God – Do You Proclaim His Praise?
Your praise to God is evidenced through your salvation. 1 Peter 2:9 says, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”
NOTE: The above can be found at http://www.allaboutprayer.org/how-to-praise-and-worship-god-faq.htm
The book “God’s Singers”, by Dave Williamson, is a great resource for Worship Leaders and Choir Directors. Singers would enjoy the special Singer’s edition of the book. Here is a review of the book, from Worship Leader online magazine.
Author: Warren Anderson
Every so often a worship music book is published that becomes recognizable as the definitive, go-to reference for its particular genre in its particular generation. In our time, if you wish to talk about the history of music in the Church, go to Paul Westermeyer’s Te Deum
. If building a case for congregational song is your desire, your first stop should be John Bell’s A Case for Congregational Song
. Want a grad-school-level analysis of how contemporary worship music is used these days? The Message in the Music
(Robert Woods and Brian Walrath) is your best bet.Dave Williamson’s God Singers
joins these other must-haves where the specific subject of worship-leading choirs is concerned. Every possible topic that should be covered in a book of this nature is here. Biblical support for the use of choirs in worship? Check. Lots and lots of practical how-to’s for getting the best sound out of your singers? Got it. Sociological discussions of issues inherent in corporate ministry, even ones peculiar to choral singing? Yep. Stylistic techniques for transforming your choristers into a black-gospel choir, a rock choir, or a modern-worship choir—i.e., what to do with vibrato, vocal licks, and syncopation? They’re here. Helpful appendices from Williamson’s 40 years in the biz? Nine of them. Consider purchasing the (condensed) singer’s edition for your choir members and the (expanded) director’s edition, which includes a CD-ROM of ancillaries, for yourself. Highly recommended. Title:
God’s Singers Author:
Dave Williamson Publisher:
NOTE: The quotation by Travis Cottrell found in this blog post came from his online recommendation for this book.
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