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 Traditions of Men

The Traditions of Men

This entry is part 1 of 1 in the series Fundamentals of Corporate Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Ever since Cain and Abel, God’s people have been asking, “What is the proper way to worship God?” Uncertainty reigns today in churches over whether or not certain service elements are really helpful for congregational worship. What is acceptable? Some godly Christians, attempting to enhance their worship, believe they have freedom to use anything to… Continue Reading

A Concise Biblical Evaluation of Critical Theory

A Concise Biblical Evaluation of Critical Theory

The issue of Critical Theory (CT) has become the hot-button issue for evangelicals over the past couple of years, as evidenced by SBC debates over the now infamous Resolution 9, controversy over the death of George Floyd, BLM riots over the summer and fall, and recently climaxing with evangelical opinions about the 2020 election and… Continue Reading

Announcing the Tune My Heart Bible Narratives Personal Journal!

Announcing the Tune My Heart Bible Narratives Personal Journal!

I am pleased to add a resource to the growing collection of Tune My Heart devotional resources: a personal journal for the Bible Narratives Reading plan! Print version on Amazon.com. This volume contains the reading plan, catechism, and Bible memory, along with the three reflection questions for each day’s reading and room to write responses.… Continue Reading

Top Articles and Resources This Year

Top Articles and Resources This Year

It is the end of another great year for Religious Affections Ministries. We continue to be encouraged by the e-mails we receive thanking us for the resources we provide to help the church think biblically about worship and the Christian life. This year we published regular weekly content on the website as usual (top posts… Continue Reading

The Foundations in the Psalms

The Foundations in the Psalms

This entry is part 13 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

For the past couple months I have been engaged in a series on the foundational principles laid out in the Book of Psalms. I identified three core principles introduced in Psalms 1 and 2, and then we noticed one example of a psalm that returns to these very principles—Psalm 11. Those principles are: The Lord… Continue Reading

The Foundations Are Not Destroyed

The Foundations Are Not Destroyed

This entry is part 12 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Last week we saw David presents three responses in Psalm 11 to the perception that the foundations of society are crumbling around us: In the Lord I take refuge. The Lord is in his holy temple. The Lord has determined the destiny of the wicked and the righteous. Now, what do these responses have to… Continue Reading

Responses to Crumbling Foundations

Responses to Crumbling Foundations

This entry is part 11 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

When the foundations of society appear to be crumbling around us, what should the righteous do? Psalm 11 answers that question. But before we look at how the psalm answers that question correctly, notice the wrong answer to the question. Did you notice the quotation marks after “what can the righteous do?” David is quoting… Continue Reading

If the Foundations are Destroyed

If the Foundations are Destroyed

This entry is part 10 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

The question I have been seeking to answer over the past several weeks is how can we praise the Lord in the midst of a wicked world, and I’ve suggested that answering that question is one of the fundamental purposes of how the Book of Psalms is organized. The book ends with all creation praising… Continue Reading

Torah’s Counsel

Torah’s Counsel

This entry is part 9 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Psalms 1 and 2 present two conflicting images of the good life that compete throughout world history: an image of a tree that flourishes under the rule of God, and an image of God’s rule as oppressive and tyrannical. The wicked’s counsel is, the only way to flourish is to burst the bonds of God’s… Continue Reading

God’s Response to Wicked Imagination

God’s Response to Wicked Imagination

This entry is part 8 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

When the apostles experienced persecution in Acts 4, they looked to Psalms 2 for comfort. They recognized that the ultimate example of what they were experiencing was the crucifixion of God’s Anointed—the nations raging against the rule of God by killing his Son, Jesus Christ. And when we face the kind of opposition and conflict… Continue Reading

Wicked Counsel Enacted in History

Wicked Counsel Enacted in History

This entry is part 7 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Psalms 1 and 2 express two different images of life under God—as a flourishing tree, or as an oppressive bondage. Which image controls you will determine your path and your ultimate destiny. The wicked imagination of God’s rule that we discussed last week has been enacted throughout history. Think about the serpent’s counsel to Eve:… Continue Reading

The Counsel of the Wicked

The Counsel of the Wicked

This entry is part 6 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

We are in the midst of a short series focused on the psalms, and part of my goal is to help us understand how the entire Five Books of Psalms are organized and what purpose God intends for them to have in our lives. We discovered from Psalm 1 the foundational truths that are developed… Continue Reading

Torah for the Heart

Torah for the Heart

This entry is part 5 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Living in a wicked world presents challenges for people attempting to walk the way of righteousness. We are constantly bombarded with competing images of the good life, and the wicked often appear to be flourishing. For this reason, God’s people must delight themselves in God’s Word, meditating on Scripture to the degree that our hearts… Continue Reading

Imagination Formed by Scripture’s Music

Imagination Formed by Scripture’s Music

This entry is part 4 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

The way that you live will be controlled ultimately by your image of the good life—what it means to really flourish and prosper, And, in particular, your image of what it means to flourish in relation to God’s rule is what controls your life. This is what we have been seeing from Psalm 1 over… Continue Reading

What Shapes Your Image of the Good Life?

What Shapes Your Image of the Good Life?

This entry is part 3 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

A lot of Christians have the wrong image when they read Psalm 1. They think if they just choose the righteous path, then everything will be care free, without any trouble or adversity. But the psalter is here to show us what that blessed tree actually looks like and what the nature of growing will… Continue Reading

Contrasting Images of Blessedness

Contrasting Images of Blessedness

This entry is part 2 of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

We are living in what potentially could be very discouraging times for Christians seeking to live lives that glorify the Lord. But as I pointed out last week, the book of Psalms has been structured to help us endure through these very kinds of times. Much of the book focuses on dark times of discouragement… Continue Reading

Praise in the Midst of Wickedness

Praise in the Midst of Wickedness

This entry is part of 13 in the series Musing on God's Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

The Book of Psalms in Hebrew was originally called Tehillim—“Praises.” That probably doesn’t surprise you; we often associate the psalms with praise. We expect to find expressions of praise like “Hallelujah”—Praise the Lord! However, the book was called “Praises,” not actually because the book is just a collection of expressions of praise. In fact, while… Continue Reading

Lessons from a Pandemic: Science Is Limited

Lessons from a Pandemic: Science Is Limited

I’m obviously very thankful for science, I’m thankful for medical advancements that improve quality of life, I’m thankful for technology. However, what our current situation with COVID-19 has helped us to see is that science can’t solve everything because it is based on human observation, and humans are limited. The scientific method by definition is… Continue Reading

Aesthetic Correspondence

Aesthetic Correspondence

For a couple weeks I have been developing the idea that in order to disciple people through corporate worship, our corporate worship must be shaped by the means God has given us for such transformation—Scripture. This means both that our liturgies must be shaped by Scripture and our music must be shaped by Scripture. There has… Continue Reading