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A Better Way: Rediscovering the Drama of God-Centered Worship Paperback – May 1, 2003
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"Horton's enlivening wisdom is surely a godsend to all evangelicals."
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I did find his virtual assault in chapter 2 on believers experiencing God somewhat overdone. Granted, there is far too much seeking of the experience in the church today, but that does not and should not be taken to mean that a believer cannot have some kind of experiential reality of God. Further his observations in this area seem to neglect passages like Psalm 27.7-9. And his discounting of believers seeing God at work in the present "The world is shot through with divinity and nearly everything and every experience is an opportunity to touch and see God's face" (pg. 39) seems to emphasise God's transcendence at the expense of His immanence, the latter of which is also confirmed by Scripture, e.g., Psalm 19, 50.6, Romans 1.20, etc. The overall thrust of this chapter suggests that it is impossible for a believer with, for lack of a better phrase, their theology straight, who is seeking God in accordance with His word, to witness God in His creation, which again seems to me to contradict Scripture. It is true that these experiences are not means of saving grace as defined in Scripture, nor should they be mistaken for or sought as ends themselves, but that does not - when they are truly of God - diminish their reality or significance in the life of the believer.
Insofar as the reference to ministers being formally sent or approved by an ecclesiastical body, "And, by the way, Paul clearly understood 'sent' to mean sent by the church through its appointed officers, as his insistence on the laying on of hands reminds us" (pg.Read more ›
The stated thesis of the book is, “God has promised to save and keep his people through the means he has appointed and through no others; the ordinary means of grace are limited to the preached Word and the administered sacraments; God’s rationale for these means is made explicit in Scripture.” Dr. Horton obviously believes that the Word and sacraments are the central aspects of our worship and I thought he made an excellent case for his thesis.
The beginning of the book especially, makes the case that the above mentioned drama looks much like an ancient form of covenant known as a Suzerain treaty. In this form of covenant a greater king (the suzerain) would impose a treaty on a lesser king in which the great king promises to rescue/protect the lesser king and in return the lesser king gives his allegiance to the greater king. In God’s drama, He is the suzerain and we are the subjects that have been rescued by Him and who owe Him our allegiance. Our worship services were then compared to covenant renewal ceremonies.
The part of the book I found most interesting (and which made me wish I lived near a Reformed church) was chapter 9, “What Should Our Service Look Like?” This chapter described the elements that should be present in our worship services if they are to be covenant renewal ceremonies.
I found the last few chapters more difficult to digest and will not comment on them because I am not sure how well I have understood them. (I don’t consider this a bad thing though. Trying to gain a better understanding gives me something to look forward to the next time I read this book.)
Overall, I thought this was an excellent book and heartily recommend it!
Is this the right way for it to be? Has the purpose of worship gotten lost somewhere between the traditions and the new ways? Where is God in all this, in other words.
The author, one of the members of the popular White Horse Inn radio show that examines Reformed theology for the edification and equipment of the believers, realizes that worship is one of the primary functions of those God has called to Himself. Using Biblical illustration, he teaches readers what worship was meant to be, and also provides some useful material that brings aspects of the Bible to a new light and helps some parts that have not quite made sense a bit more comprehensible.
***** The man to whom the book is dedicated, James M. Boice, would be proud if he could read this educational and informative text.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is an excellent book. I have been studying many aspects of reformed (Bibilcal) doctrine and all that I have learned and concluded about true Biblical worship is explained in... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Lisa J
Horton requires the reader to want to read. Typical Horton, but the e book at ten bucks that doesn't have highlight or underline options is a wast of reading.Published on February 9, 2014 by S Strodtman
This is a though provoking work on worship, preaching, and church life. It's not an easy read but it's well worth it.Published on September 6, 2013 by JOELDGILBERT
Before I read this book, I had a limited knowledge of Reformed theology. For me, the book was valuable for two reasons. Read morePublished on August 16, 2011 by ironman96
Exactly as described. The price was right on the mark! Timely delivery as promised with good protection in the box. Read morePublished on September 22, 2010 by R.E. Formed
If one wants to find a calendar that begins each week with Sunday, not Monday, your search grows ever more difficult as more and more calendars begin their week with Monday. Read morePublished on May 16, 2010 by Mike Robinson
I love this book it helped me out so much. I only wish I could read it forever!! Also people should read "The Color of Light: poems on Van Gough by McEntyre, MarilynPublished on October 11, 2009 by S. Rickli
This is an excellent general book on worship. It includes exposition of both Old and New Testament texts, leading the reader continually back to the bible as the source for... Read morePublished on January 11, 2007 by M. L. Lambooy