Archive | —Worship and Scripture


Grace Has Come – So Has Our New Album

I’m overjoyed to report that last week (Aug. 1) we released Grace Has Come: Songs from the Book of Romans. I knew when we started this project that it would be a daunting task. It was. There just isn’t any way of adequately communicating the glorious truths in the book of Romans. But we had to try. I thank God that a lot of great songs for congregational worship have been written recently, like Not in Me and Man of Sorrows. More people are trying to write songs that are theologically driven, gospel aware, fresh, and singable. With Grace Has Come we let a book of the Bible drive the whole album. This is by no means an exhaustive musical …

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Worship Without Words

Recently I posted on Twitter: The fact that Psalms doesn’t include a soundtrack or notation clues us in to what God values most in our worship songs. I find it fascinating that God gave us a “songbook” with numerous musical references, but no actual music. It’s not that music is unimportant. Badly played or written music can make great theology sound obscure or unappealing. Great music can make shallow lyrics sound profound and incredibly moving. Which is why when we’re deciding what to sing congregationally, we want to give the greatest attention to the lyrics we’re singing. In response to my tweet someone asked: @bkauflin Is it …

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Show Us Christ – Video from The Gathering

When we were putting together the songs for The Gathering: Live from WorshipGod11, we ended up having not one, but two songs that served as a “prayer for illumination.” One is Your Words of Life, written by Pat & Joel Sczebel. The other is Show us Christ, which I co-wrote with Doug Plank. Show Us Christ reminds us that the purpose of preaching God’s Word is not simply to give insights for living, impress people with our knowledge of Greek, or to tell people they need to try harder. The primary goal is to display the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 4:6). The written and preached Word is meant to point us to the riches of …

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The Father’s Love Video

Hoping to share some reflections from my recent time in Australia soon. But before that, I wanted to let you know about a video we just finished editing. Last May at the NEXT conference, I had the opportunity to lead the song, The Father’s Love, with my son, Devon, and the Na Band. We projected the lyrics across the entire backdrop of the stage. I loved the effect of emphasizing the importance of the lyrics we were singing. I have an increasing conviction (if that’s possible) that our singing should be characterized by passion rooted in biblical truth rather than simply passion that’s an effect of musical stimulation. Enlarging the size …

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Why I’m Reading the Bible in Ten Different Places

At the end of 2009  I finished reading through the ESV Study Bible and posted a few thoughts on what I learned. During the first half of 2010, I read through it again (just the Scripture, not the notes), but wanted to try something different for the last half of 2010. I had been looking at Prof. Grant Horner’s Bible reading plan and decided to try it. You can read Grant’s  thoughts on it here. The plan involves reading one chapter from ten different places in the Bible each time you read. Once you reach the end of a section you start over. I was drawn to the plan because I wanted to gain a better perspective on how the Bible comments …

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Ryan Ferguson Recites Psalm 25

As a follow up to what I posted on Monday, here’s an example of focusing on the content without ignoring the container. This is a video from the WorshipGod08 conference, where Ryan Ferguson is reciting Psalm 25, using the English Standard Version (ESV) translation.  It’s about 4 minutes and very moving. If you want to see more, you can watch Ryan’s interpretations of  Psalm 145, Psalm 22, and Hebrews 9 and 10. If you’re interested, you can contact Ryan at What would happen if we always heard/read/thought about Scripture with this kind of emotion and thoughtfulness? …

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Thoughts on the ESV Study Bible (now that I’ve read it)

In October of 2008, I posted that my goal was to read through the ESV Study Bible and notes (excluding the articles at the end) by the end of 2009. It took a little extra time this past week, but I finished Revelation 22 today. In my post last year, I gave ten reasons why I appreciate the ESV Study Bible. I mentioned the pastorally sensitive, gospel-centered notes, the excellent charts and illustrations, the additional articles, and the translation itself. Reading it through this past year (15 months, actually), has only confirmed all I said previously. There are certainly other ways to read the Bible than “in one year.” But let me tell …

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Why Theology Matters to Christian Musicians

This past weekend I spoke at the Christian Musician Summit on Why Theology Matters to Christian musicians. When Christian musicians get together, our tendency is to assume we all have our theology down and we can focus on honing our chops, discovering new gear, and improving our techniques and methodologies. Or maybe we think that theology isn’t that important. Whatever the reason, I wanted to make clear that even at the Christian Musicians Summit, theology matters. I started by saying that theology is literally the “study of God,” particularly as he has revealed himself in Scripture. It includes not only studying the Bible, but understanding …

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Ryan Ferguson Recites Psalm 145

On the first night of WorshipGod08, after we sang the hymn Jesus Shall Reign, Ryan Ferguson stepped up on stage and enthusiastically recited Psalm 145. I wanted to use that Psalm there because it’s filled not only with exhortations to praise and extol God, but also with clear reasons why God should be praised. Every time I lead worship I want to be sure people have plenty of doctrinal fuel for their emotional fire. I asked Ryan to participate because he had recited two chapters from Hebrews at our WorshipGod06 conference, and did an amazing job. It’s obvious he’s thought carefully about the passage he’s memorized and is seeking to communicate …

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WorshipGod08 Seminars Now Available

Over at the Sovereign Grace website, we’ve finally posted 29 WorshipGod08 seminars for you to listen to or download for free. . . . Here’s the list: Band on the Run (Bob Kauflin) Building Bridges: Pastors and Worship Leaders (Bob Kauflin) Caring for Your Sound System (Darryl Wenger) Copyright Law and Church Music: The Eight Keys (Paul Herman) Drumming for Worshipers (Jordan Kauflin) Electric Guitar Workshop (Dave Campbell) Foundations for Bass Players (Don Nalle) Foundations for Keyboardists (Jon Payne) Growing Your Team for the Glory of God (Jon Payne) In-Ear Monitors (Doug Gould) Leading and Caring for …

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Reflections on the Christian Songwriter’s Retreat

Last week I spent four days in beautiful Mt. Hermon, CA, near San Jose. I had the joy of participating in a Christian Songwriter’s Retreat sponsored by the Mt. Hermon Retreat Center. About 300 folks came to learn how to develop their heart and craft as Christian song writers. The speakers/musicians included Paul Baloche, Joy Williams, Mia Fieldes, Charlie Peacok, Don Moen, Derek Webb, Sara Groves, Phil Wickham, and yours truly. I really enjoyed the format. There were morning and evening sessions with seminars during the day. The main sessions started with about 25 minutes of singing, followed by a 30 minute teaching. I was the speaker in the …

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Singing the Psalms in Worship

I started this post last Friday as a Q&A Friday, but never finished it. Oh well… Jacob sent me this question: What is your take on the exclusive use of Psalms in worship?…Since the Psalms were the only Spirit-inspired songs given to the people of God, and because instrument use in the Old Testament is tied to ceremonial law (which was done away with in the New Testament), the belief is that true corporate worship in song is comprised of Psalm singing without instrumentation. Also, it is noted that there are no commands to write uninspired songs of worship in the Bible. What do you think? The other day, Don left a comment also …

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Ryan Ferguson Recites Hebrews 9 and 10

This video captures one of the highlights of the WorshipGod06 Conference hosted by Sovereign Grace Ministries this past August. Ryan Ferguson shared a memorized dramatic presentation of Hebrews 9 and 10 from the ESV Bible.  The power of God’s Word came through in a fresh, compelling way. Ryan, a member of  North Hills Community Church in Greenville, South Carolina, has actually memorized the entire book of Hebrews. However, we only asked him to share two chapters with us at the conference. As my family celebrates Thanksgiving tomorrow along with most Americans, we are going to express gratefulness to God for the innumerable …

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Vacation Quote #2 – Worship in Revelation

I’m in Europe right now with my bride of 30 years, seeking to communicate how much I love her for the glory of God. But here’s a great quote from a great book, Engaging with God, by David Peterson. He is describing how the worship of heaven seen in the book of Revelation should influence the songs we sing now.Singing the praises of God and the Lamb is undoubtedly an important Christian activity. It is a way of affirming fundamental gospel truths together and of acknowledging God’s powerful but gracious rule over nature and history. Together with teaching and various forms of exhortation, it can strengthen Christians to maintain their confidence …

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