Here is a good reflection by Ben Wright about how Lent can often muddy gospel clarity, and here is another similar perspective from Brian Lee, who argues that Lent can actually be harmful for the soul.
I tend to agree with these men. While I find this season helpful for a church to prepare for the passion of Christ and Easter through readings and hymns that focus on the life of Christ, I’ve often thought that fasting or “giving things up” during Lent in a way that we “participate” in Christ’s sacrifice is misleading at best.
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. Views posted here are his own and not necessarily those of his employer.