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

Ordering as Characteristic of the Holy Spirit’s Work

Ordering as Characteristic of the Holy Spirit’s Work

This entry is part 2 of 9 in the series The Holy Spirit's Work in Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Based on a thorough survey of how the Holy Spirit works throughout Scripture, I suggested last week that although he certainly sometimes works in extraordinary ways, these occur in Scripture at transitional stages in the outworking of God’s plan. Therefore, our expectation for how the Holy Spirit works should not be that he will do something… Continue Reading

Is the Holy Spirit’s Work Characteristically Extraordinary Experience?

Is the Holy Spirit’s Work Characteristically Extraordinary Experience?

This entry is part 3 of 9 in the series The Holy Spirit's Work in Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Last week I presented a brief survey of the Holy Spirit’s activity throughout Scripture, which helps to lay an important foundation for assessing his work in worship, especially what Christians should expect his ordinary work to be. In order to arrive at conclusions regarding that expectation, I will next consider broadly how to characterize the… Continue Reading

How Does Scripture Describe the Work of the Holy Spirit?

How Does Scripture Describe the Work of the Holy Spirit?

This entry is part 7 of 9 in the series The Holy Spirit's Work in Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Ultimately, current expectations concerning the Holy Spirit’s work in worship must derive, not from experience, but from Scripture. In order to lay such a biblical foundation, I will next survey how the Bible broadly characterizes the Holy Spirit’s activity, and then narrow the focus to the church age and specifically corporate worship. Scripture contains roughly… Continue Reading

Why We Let the Little Ones Come to the Service

Why We Let the Little Ones Come to the Service

I remember the Sunday driving home from church when Becky said, “Wow, I think I was able to listen to the whole sermon today.” Our kids had finally reached the age where they were able to sit still in our church’s service without needing attention. Now we’ve “started over” with two more children. There is… Continue Reading

Pentecostalism’s View of the Holy Spirit’s Work in Worship

Pentecostalism’s View of the Holy Spirit’s Work in Worship

This entry is part 6 of 9 in the series The Holy Spirit's Work in Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Last week, I noted that the most common expectation today of the Holy Spirit’s work in worship is that he will make God’s presence known in a tangible way, and I promised to discuss where this expectation arose. This expectation is certainly not new; theologians such as John Owen and Jonathan Edwards addressed the religious… Continue Reading

Holy Spirit, come flood this place and fill the atmosphere

Holy Spirit, come flood this place and fill the atmosphere

This entry is part 5 of 9 in the series The Holy Spirit's Work in Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Arguably, the default expectation of contemporary evangelical worshipers is that the Holy Spirit works in worship in such a way so as to create an extraordinary experience, well expressed in the popular worship song by Bryan and Katie Torwalt: Holy spirit, You are welcome here Come flood this place and fill the atmosphere Your glory,… Continue Reading

The Holy Spirit’s Work in Worship: Extraordinary Experience or Disciplined Formation?

The Holy Spirit’s Work in Worship: Extraordinary Experience or Disciplined Formation?

This entry is part 4 of 9 in the series The Holy Spirit's Work in 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 a 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

Start the New Year with Our Bible Narratives Reading Plan

Start the New Year with Our Bible Narratives Reading Plan

Stories shape us. When we read a story, we enter a world that the author has created and thus become shaped by that world. Experiencing the world of the story forms our imaginations of reality, our perceptions and affections, and even our worldview and beliefs. The same is true—perhaps even more so—with the stories of… Continue Reading

Special Thank You to Donors

Special Thank You to Donors

Religious Affections Ministries operates entirely based upon donations and modest sales from the books we publish. In particular, the entire hymnal project was funded through generous donations. No one takes a salary here; all donations are put toward web site and publishing costs. We would like to take this opportunity to express deep gratitude to… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 52: Jesus Comes Again

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 52: Jesus Comes Again

This entry is part 52 of 52 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Week 52: Jesus Comes Again Weekly memory verse: Revelation 22:17 – “The Spirit and the Bride say, ‘Come.’ And let the one who hears say, ‘Come.’ And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price. Weekly hymn: “Lo! He Comes with Clouds Descending” (free… Continue Reading

All Members Care for the Whole Body

All Members Care for the Whole Body

This entry is part of 8 in the series Diversity and Unity in the Body of Christ You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Paul clearly describes in 1 Corinthians 12 the core elements of a theology of unity and diversity withing the Body of Christ. God grants a diversity of ministry functions to the church, but because of Spirit baptism, people of diverse backgrounds and abilities are unified into one body. His whole purpose in this discussion is… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 51: Paul on Trial

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 51: Paul on Trial

This entry is part 51 of 52 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Week 51: Paul on Trial Weekly memory verse: Revelation 20:12 – “And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had… Continue Reading

All the Members are Necessary to the Body

All the Members are Necessary to the Body

This entry is part 1 of 8 in the series Diversity and Unity in the Body of Christ You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Last week, I made the point from Paul’s discussion in 2 Corinthians 12 that all members of the church, because of their diversity, make up the unity of the body of Christ. And Paul specifically defends that notion beginning inverse 17 by considering, what would the results be if every member of the body had exactly the… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 50: Life by the Spirit and the Word

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 50: Life by the Spirit and the Word

This entry is part 50 of 52 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Week 50: Life by the Spirit and Word Weekly memory verse: Titus 2:11–13 – “For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the… Continue Reading

All the Members Make the Body

All the Members Make the Body

This entry is part 7 of 8 in the series Diversity and Unity in the Body of Christ You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

In his first letter to the Corinthian Christians, the apostle Paul emphasizes the functional diversity and spiritual unity of the Body of Christ. But Paul knows that based on how things naturally work, diversity of function within the body might lead to some people within body thinking that because their giftedness is different than others, then… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 49: Paul Begins His Final Missionary Journey

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 49: Paul Begins His Final Missionary Journey

This entry is part 49 of 52 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Week 49: Paul Begins His Final Missionary Journey Weekly memory verse: Philippians 2:9-11 – “Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess… Continue Reading