Monday, March 15, 2010

Review: Called to worship

Called to Worship by Vernon M. Whaley, is a good book on worship that bridges both academia and the broader church. Whaley, who is the director of the Center for Worship at Liberty University, gives a biblical theology of worship, tracing both the “worship wars” throughout Judeo-Christian history and positive biblical responses to God, providing, as the subtitle declares, “biblical foundations of our response to God’s call.” Whaley has a biblical point of view that all people share this purpose in life, to worship God, and, as Tozer said, “If we do not honor this purpose, our lives will degenerate into shallow, selfish, humanistic pursuits.”

While overall the book is good, it fits into a small niche. It can be helpful to worship leaders and pastors to give a better understanding about worship as the bible portrays it, but doesn’t bridge gaps well beyond themes and principles. It seems more theoretical with little practical advice on how one can proceed with worship to follow through with these principles. Yes, this does lay a foundation and gives a framework for thought, and it does a good job at that, but there is great need for practical helps on how to proceed in our “call to worship,” both individually and corporately.