Worship Matters Study Part 1

Starting tonight I’ll be leading the music team at the church I pastor through the book Worship Matters: Leading Others to Encounter the Greatness of God by Bob Kauflin. It’s the most helpful book I’ve read about leading worship through music at churches today. I’ll be posting the study guides I’ve put together as we go through them, this being the first one. I hope you find it helpful.

Worship Matters – Chapters 1, 2, 3

Chapter 1 – The Important Things

  • “After thirty years of leading worship, I’ve realized that worship isn’t just an opportunity to use my musical gifts. It’s more than a heightened emotional experience or a way to make a living. It’s way more than what we do on Sunday morning.

“Worship is about what we love. What we live for.

“It’s about who we are before God.” (17)

How are some practical ways we can model this to the congregation?

  • “Worship matters. It matter to God because he is the one ultimately worthy of all worship. It matters to us because worshipping God is the reason for which we were created. And it matters to every worship leader, because we have no greater privilege than leading others to encounter the greatness of God. . . And if you don’t feel adequate for the task . . . you’re in the perfect place for God to use you.” (19)

What about those of us who do feel adequate for the task? How can we keep our pride in check to give God the glory instead of focusing on our gifts?

Chapter 2 – My Heart: What Do I Love?

  • “Your greatest challenge is what you yourself bring to the platform each and every Sunday. Your heart.” (21)

What are some idols in your life that you need to check yourself on before you lead God’s people in worship? In my experience, musicians have a tendency to revel in their own gifts and abilities, have you found this to be true with your musical gifts?

  • “If you were really hopeless, you’d stop trusting in yourself and what you can do and start trusting in what Jesus accomplished for you at the cross.” (24)

“I didn’t think of myself as a very great sinner. Which meant I didn’t need a very great Savior.” (25)

It’s only when we see ourselves in light of the perfection of Christ that we are truly able to worship God. Do you see yourself as a great sinner? Martin Luther said,

“If you are a preacher of Grace, then preach a true, not a fictitious grace; if grace is true, you must bear a true and not a fictitious sin. God does not save people who are only fictitious sinners. Be a sinner and sin boldly, but believe and rejoice in Christ even more boldly. For he is victorious over sin, death, and the world. As long as we are here we have to sin. This life in not the dwelling place of righteousness but, as Peter says, we look for a new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. . . . Pray boldly-you too are a mighty sinner.”

What does it mean to “sin boldly”?

  • “While it’s simplistic to say that worship is love, it’s a fact that what we love most will determine what we genuinely worship.” (25)

What do you love? God wants us to love him more than anything else, and only when we love him that way can we love others. The love for him will spill over into our other relationships. What are some ways that you need to love Him more fully?

  • “It is therefore a matter of infinite importance, to have the whole heart engaged steadfastly for God.” (26)

Chapter 3 – My Mind: What Do I Believe

  • “The better (i.e., the more accurately) we know God through his Word, the more genuine our worship will be. . . Regardless of what we think or feel, there is no authentic worship of God without a right knowledge of God.” (28)

Do you desire to know God more fully? How often do you read your Bible? I’ve heard it said that many people have enough dust on their Bibles to write their own name in condemnation on it, and a Bible that is worn out is read by someone who isn’t. How much of a priority is there for the Bible in your life? (If you want some supplemental books in addition to the Bible talk to me about it!)

  • Misconception #1: Studying This Stuff Should Be So Hard (29(

See Luke 10:27 – notice all the areas we are to use to love the Lord

  • Misconception #2: We Know God Better Through Music Than Through Words

“Being moved emotionally is different from being changed spiritually. Music affects and helps us in many ways, but it doesn’t replace truth about God.” (30)

  • Misconception #3: Theology and Doctrine Cause Problems

“Theology and doctrine make life simpler. They protect us from reading verses out of context, restricting our diet to our favorite passages, and making decisions based on impulse rather than truth.” (31)

  • “If our doctrine is accurate but our hearts are cold toward God himself, our corporate worship will be true but lifeless. Or if we express fervent love for God but present vague, inaccurate, or incomplete ideas of him to those we’re leading, our worship will be emotional but misleading – and possibly idolatrous. Neither option brings God glory.” (32)

Which way does our church body tend to lean toward? What do we need to do to correct this error?


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  1. Worship Matters Study Guide | Mike's Musings

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