Scott Aniol

Scott Aniol is the founder and Executive Director of Religious Affections Ministries. He is Chair of the Worship Ministry Department at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he teaches courses in ministry, worship, hymnology, aesthetics, culture, and philosophy. He is the author of Worship in Song: A Biblical Approach to Music and Worship, Sound Worship: A Guide to Making Musical Choices in a Noisy World, and By the Waters of Babylon: Worship in a Post-Christian Culture, and speaks around the country in churches and conferences. He is an elder in his church in Fort Worth, TX where he resides with his wife and four children.

Author Archives: Scott Aniol

The Nature and Purpose of Corporate Worship: Edification, not Expression

The Nature and Purpose of Corporate Worship: Edification, not Expression

This entry is part 5 of 5 in the series Decent and Orderly Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Paul’s central argument in the only full NT chapter addressing corporate worship is that for corporate worship, the spiritual gift of prophecy was to be desired more than the gift of tongues. Even though this core argument may not be directly applicable in a day when tongues and prophecy have ceased, I have been demonstrating… Continue Reading

The Nature and Purpose of Corporate Worship: Believers, Not Unbelievers

The Nature and Purpose of Corporate Worship: Believers, Not Unbelievers

This entry is part 4 of 5 in the series Decent and Orderly Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

In 1 Corinthians 14, Paul makes the specific argument that in corporate worship, the gift of prophecy is to be desired over the gift of tongues. But in the course of making that argument, Paul reveals core principles about the nature and purpose of corporate worship that apply for all churches to this day. Last… Continue Reading

The Nature and Purpose of Corporate Worship: Corporate, Not Individual

The Nature and Purpose of Corporate Worship: Corporate, Not Individual

This entry is part 3 of 5 in the series Decent and Orderly Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

For the last couple of weeks I have been laying the contextual foundation for what is perhaps the most significant chapter in the New Testament about corporate worship. Last week I demonstrated that Paul’s central argument in at least the first half of 1 Corinthians 14 is that for corporate worship, the gift of prophecy—direct… Continue Reading

Decent and Orderly Worship: Why is Prophecy better than Tongues?

Decent and Orderly Worship: Why is Prophecy better than Tongues?

This entry is part 2 of 5 in the series Decent and Orderly Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Last week I started a series on what is likely the single most important text in the New Testament regarding our corporate worship—1 Corinthians 14. By way of introduction, I demonstrated that the chapter is specifically addressing “when we come together,” that is, it is explicitly about the gatherings of churches, and thus this chapter… Continue Reading

Decent and Orderly Worship: The Context

Decent and Orderly Worship: The Context

This entry is part 1 of 5 in the series Decent and Orderly Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

“Our church’s worship is pretty formal, but I prefer Holy Spirit-led worship.” Such was the comment I overheard recently by a young evangelical describing his church’s worship service, illustrating a very common perception by many evangelicals today—if the Holy Spirit actively works in worship, the results will be something extraordinary, an experience “quenched” by too… Continue Reading

What does government have the right to do?

What does government have the right to do?

In these times of government-mandated quarantine for many US states and even countries around the world, the issue of the biblical role of government, and the response of individual Christians and churches collectively to government, is an understandable topic of concern. While our current dilemmas—particularly with churches being encouraged not to meet—are complicated, and I… Continue Reading

Use this time to develop healthy family worship habits

Use this time to develop healthy family worship habits

If you’re like most people right now, you’re finding yourself at home a whole more these days! There are certainly lots of challenges involved with this time, but more time at home with family can create many blessings as well. Don’t waste this time! One of the great blessings you can enjoy while your family… Continue Reading

Facing the Cross: A Service of Scripture and Song

Facing the Cross: A Service of Scripture and Song

One of the things I’m going to miss most (among many!) during this unusual season when our church can’t gather is our annual “Facing the Cross Service,” a simple service we observe each year during Holy Week that recounts the last few days, death, and burial of our Lord through Scripture readings and hymns. Since… Continue Reading

Why “Virtual Lord’s Supper” Is Impossible

Why “Virtual Lord’s Supper” Is Impossible

This past Monday I turned 40, and because of “stay in place” requirements, my wife hosted a surprise Zoom birthday celebration. About 20 people logged on, they sang “Happy birthday” (which didn’t go well, but was hilarious), and it was a really nice brief chance to see a lot of friends and family since we… Continue Reading

Home Worship Resources During COVID-19

Home Worship Resources During COVID-19

Last week I briefly highlighted how a church can at least approximate worship “together” while we’re prevented from being together physically, and I definitely echo David de Bruyn’s comments here about taking care to make sure that we’re not cheapening corporate worship through the technological means we use during this time. To be clear, neither… Continue Reading

How a church can worship “together” during COVID-19

How a church can worship “together” during COVID-19

It may be tempting to think that we are living in unprecedented times until we remember that Christians have faced persecution and plagues throughout history. This is not the first time Christians have been forced to gather in small groups, nor will it be the last. However, what we are facing as a result of… Continue Reading

The Dangers of Syncretism and Idolatry

The Dangers of Syncretism and Idolatry

In the Old Testament Law, God gave his people very specific instructions about how they were to relate to the people around them, including in their culture and worship practices. Deuteronomy 12:2–8 reveals important principles in this regard. God commanded that the people destroy the places where pagans worshiped, including their altars, their pillars, their… Continue Reading

How the Order of OT Sacrifices Communicated a Theology of Worship

How the Order of OT Sacrifices Communicated a Theology of Worship

Last week I described how the layout and structure of the tabernacle communicated a particular transcendent theology of worship. Even the order of the sacrifices pictures this. God gave specific instructions concerning sacrifices to him: An altar of earth you shall make for me and sacrifice on it your burnt offerings and your peace offerings, your… Continue Reading

How the Tabernacle Communicated a Theology of Worship

How the Tabernacle Communicated a Theology of Worship

At Mt. Sinai, God established standardized practices of worship for his people. First, God commanded that the people build a sanctuary for him. They built the tabernacle of God—and later the temple—according to God’s specific instructions (Exod 25:8–9, 40; 27:8; Num 8:4; cf. Acts 7:44; Heb 8:5). This sanctuary of his presence was not for… Continue Reading

Forming a Great Commandment Culture

Forming a Great Commandment Culture

In the context of giving the Law at Mt. Sinai and the promise that if they follow God’s commands as a nation, God will bless them, we find a statement that stands at the core of biblical religion: Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. You shall love the Lord your… Continue Reading

Manhood Ceremony for a Boy Becoming a Man

Manhood Ceremony for a Boy Becoming a Man

From the time our eldest child, Caleb, was just an infant (and possibly even before), I knew that I wanted to do something significant to mark the point when our children would come of age. I reject the whole notion of a “teenager,” a modern construct invented by pop culture, and instead wanted to reinforce… Continue Reading

Help Get Conservative Christian Content in Print

Help Get Conservative Christian Content in Print

I recently read a shocking statistic about the state of book publishing today: Here’s the reality of the book industry: in 2004, 950,000 titles out of the 1.2 million tracked by Nielsen Bookscan sold fewer than 99 copies. Another 200,000 sold fewer than 1,000 copies. Only 25,000 sold more than 5,000 copies. The average book… Continue Reading