How do the arts in worship form individuals and communities?
Every choice of art in worship opens up and closes down possibilities for the formation of our humanity. Every practice of music, every decision about language, every use of our bodies, every approach to visual media or church buildings forms our desires, shapes our imaginations, habituates our emotional instincts, and reconfigures our identity as Christians in contextually meaningful ways, generating thereby a sense of the triune God and of our place in the world.
Glimpses of the New Creation argues that the arts form us in worship by bringing us into intentional and intensive participation in the aesthetic aspect of our humanity—that is, our physical, emotional, imaginative, and metaphorical capacities. In so doing they invite the people of God to be conformed to Christ and to participate in the praise of Christ and in the praise of creation, which by the Spirit’s power raises its peculiar voice to the Father in heaven, for the sake of the world that God so loves.
W. David O. Taylor is assistant professor of theology and culture at Fuller Theological Seminary and the director of Brehm Texas, an initiative in worship, theology, and the arts.
Jeremy Begbie — Duke Divinity School "David Taylor has established himself as one of the leading voices in theology and the arts today. He brings years of real-world wisdom to his writing, gleaned from hundreds of conversations with artists, worship leaders, and academic theologians from a multitude of different traditions. It is hard to imagine anyone not being enriched by this book. Indeed, you are likely to be given manifold glimpses of the New Creation to come.”
Constance M. Cherry — Indiana Wesleyan University “A much-needed book to advance the church’s understanding of the formational role of various art forms in Christian worship. He provides a framework for viewing the arts in service to the liturgy without resorting to reductionistic, unilateral conclusions. It is thought-provoking in content and pastoral in approach. His commitment to a context-specific application of the arts makes it relevant to a wide audience. I highly recommend Taylor’s book for anyone desiring to expand the arts in worship.”
Zac Hicks — Canon for Liturgy and Worship, Cathedral Church of the Advent, and author of The Worship Pastor “Reading this book is like finally cresting the highest peak of a mountain range. The horizon is vast and expanding—too much to take in! Taylor blows back the boundaries of previous conversations about worship and the arts, and in so doing gives the church sight lines into new (maybe heavenly) territory, visible in the here and now.”
Paul Westermeyer — Luther Seminary “David Taylor provides a thoughtful depth of perspective and attendant practical import. Artists and musicians, especially ones who have been treated badly, will find welcome comfort and encouragement for their vocational commitments. Mostly, however, the whole church will benefit.”
C. Michael Hawn — Southern Methodist University “A dynamic book. Rather than holding on to impoverished notions or outdated assumptions that constrain what we offer God in our praise, Taylor invites us to imagine how we might worship together if we were immersed in an abundance of artistic creativity as manifestations of God’s grace.”
Strictly Necessary Cookies
Strictly Necessary Cookie should be enabled at all times so that we can save your preferences for cookie settings.
If you disable this cookie, we will not be able to save your preferences. This means that every time you visit this website you will need to enable or disable cookies again.