Author Archives: Scott Aniol

A Plea to Teach Children Hymns

A Plea to Teach Children Hymns

Adults must stop catering to the immaturity in young people. If they want to bridge the so-called “generation gap,” they need to expect more of children, train them to understand and appreciate deep truth and solid hymns, and help them grow to be mature by weaning them from trivial expressions of praise to God. Worship… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 8: God Saves His People

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 8: God Saves His People

This entry is part 8 of 8 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Week 8: God Saves His People Weekly memory verse: Exodus 15:1 – “I will sing to the Lord, for he has triumphed gloriously; the horse and his rider he has thrown into the sea.” Weekly hymn: Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah (free download) Weekly catechism: In how many persons does this one God exist?… Continue Reading

Worship and Music During Christendom

Worship and Music During Christendom

In his book, Wiser Than Despair: The Evolution of Ideas in the Relationship of Music and the Christian Church, Quentin Faulkner provides a helpful description of how the domination of the Church during the Middle Ages affected worship and music, for good and for ill: Financial support for the church was from taxes; therefore “in no way,… Continue Reading

Can we change the world?

Can we change the world?

I recently finished reading James Hunter’s To Change the World: The Irony, Tragedy, and Possibility of Christianity in the Late Modern World, a book that deals with a perennial interest of mine, that is, whether Christians have a mandate to try to “transform” culture. Here is a summary of his central argument: Christians have long had a… Continue Reading

Aus Tiefer Not – “Out of the Depths”

Aus Tiefer Not – “Out of the Depths”

This entry is part 13 of 13 in the series Out of the Depths You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

For most of church history, singing songs of repentance was part of regular, weekly corporate worship, a practice with precedent in Psalms like Psalm 130. During the Reformation in particular, men like Martin Luther wrote songs of repentance, one of which is a paraphrase of Psalm 130. “Aus Tiefer Not”—“Out of the Depths”—was Luther’s German… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 7: God Raises Up a Deliverer

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 7: God Raises Up a Deliverer

This entry is part 7 of 8 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Weekly memory verse: Psalm 77:11 – “I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your wonders of old.” Weekly hymn: God Moves in a Mysterious Way (free download) Weekly catechism: Are there more gods than one? There is only one true and living God. Day 31: A Father’s Wise Instruction Reading:… Continue Reading

Making Disciples of Our Children

Making Disciples of Our Children

When it comes to making disciples of our children in our churches, pure love is what we are after. This love is not a mindless “emotion,” as is clear from our commitment to thorough, biblical, catechetical instruction. But this love cannot be confined to robust doctrine. We will not pass on the faith whole and… Continue Reading

The Tradition of Singing Songs of Repentance

The Tradition of Singing Songs of Repentance

This entry is part 12 of 13 in the series Out of the Depths You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

We are coming to the end of our study of Psalm 130. Last week we saw that when you’re living in a state of unconfessed sin, or you are taking the grace and forgiveness of God for granted, a song of repentance may be just what you need to shake you out of your lethargy.… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 6: God’s Good Plan

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 6: God’s Good Plan

This entry is part 6 of 8 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Week 6: God’s Good Plan Weekly memory verse: Genesis 50:20 – “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good.” Weekly hymn: What God Ordains is Always Good (free download) Weekly catechism: What is God like? God is the first and best of beings. He is holy, powerful, and good.… Continue Reading

Music and Emotion in the Image of God

Music and Emotion in the Image of God

The relationship between music and emotions gains greater stability when the source of all human feelings and emotions is exposed. Human personality and emotions are imprints of the Divine, derived miniatures of the unsearchable personhood of the Trinity, rather than self-generated or the social adaptations of a developing species. Therefore, it is not enough to… Continue Reading

Using Song to Shape Hearts of Repentence

Using Song to Shape Hearts of Repentence

This entry is part 11 of 13 in the series Out of the Depths You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Up to this point in our study of Psalm 130, we have talked only about the poetic part of a song, but Psalm 130 wasn’t read; Psalm 130 was sung. So I’d like to address the music side of things. Clearly the music—the melody, the harmony, and the rhythm—doesn’t make a clear statement like words… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 5: Trust in the Lord

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 5: Trust in the Lord

This entry is part 5 of 8 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Week 5: Trust in the Lord Weekly memory verse: Proverbs 3:5–6 – “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Weekly hymn: Blessed Jesus at Thy Word (free download) Weekly catechism: Who is God?… Continue Reading

Why We Sing Repentance

Why We Sing Repentance

This entry is part 10 of 13 in the series Out of the Depths You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Psalm 130, a corporate song of repentance, has shown us the power of art to both tell us what true repentance should be like and also show us artistically through use of metaphors, and repetition, careful word choice, and names for God. And this is why we sing. We sing not only to say right things, although… Continue Reading