Essential Worship: A Handbook for Leaders

Essential Worship: A Handbook for Leaders

by Greg Scheer


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An Essential Guide to Understanding and Leading Worship

Worship leaders are adrift in a sea of worship resources, but, incredibly, no single book provides a simple introduction to worship and worship leading. Essential Worship is a concise, easy-to-read primer on the basics of worship theology and practice. Each concept is introduced clearly and concisely. Diagrams, charts, and bulleted lists make the information easy to digest. And preparation and reflection questions help readers apply the material to their own church context.

Whether one is a beginner or an experienced worship leader, readers from all traditions will find in this resource a solid foundation for future success. It is particularly well-suited for the first-time worship or praise band leader, as well as for pastors who want to be more intentional about the music in their services.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780801008283
Publisher: Baker Publishing Group
Publication date: 11/01/2016
Pages: 304
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Greg Scheer is a composer, church musician, and choir and music director. Currently minister of worship at Church of the Servant (CRC) and a music associate with the Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, both in Grand Rapids, Michigan, he is the author of The Art of Worship and a contributor to The Hymn, Call to Worship, Worship Leader, and New Songs of Celebration Render. His music is available from Augsburg Fortress, GIA, Abingdon Press, Worship Today, Faith Alive, in numerous hymnals, and at

Table of Contents


Acknowledgments 11

About Me (Or, Confessions of a Failed Pentecostal) 13

About This Book 17

Beginning with a Funeral 19

Part 1 Principles

1 What Is Worship? 23

2 What Is Biblical Worship? 33

3 Who Is the Audience of Worship? 39

4 What Does Worship Do? 47

Part 2 Past

5 Learning from the Past 55

6 Liturgy: A Four-Letter Word? 67

7 The Church Year 73

8 The Fourfold Worship Order 79

9 The Psalms in Worship 99

Part 3 Practice: Music in Worship

10 The Senses, the Arts, and Worship 123

11 The Gospel Intoned: Music 133

12 A Balanced Congregational Song Repertoire 141

Part 4 Practice: The Arts in Worship

13 The Gospel Enacted: Drama and Wordsmithing 177

14 The Gospel Embodied: Dance and Movemenr 183

15 The Gospel Envisioned: The Visual Arts and Architecture 189

16 The Gospel Intensified: Technology in Worship 211

17 The Gospel in Time: Worship Pacing and Other Intangibles 225

Part 5 People

18 The World 239

19 The Congregation 247

20 Worship Leaders 253

21 Pastors 261

22 You 265

23 Mentoring 273


Ending with a Funeral 281

Notes 285

Index 295

Scripture Index 300

About the Author 302

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Essential Worship: A Handbook for Leaders 2.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
JLYoung More than 1 year ago
This is quite possibly the most confusing book on worship I have ever read. In my opinion there seems to be so much fluff around the simple definition of what worship is. I was incredibly turned off when the author was speaking about the audience of worship. The only audience of our worship is the Lord. Any other object we would put in his place as the audience of worship would be idolatry. The author gives his background at the beginning of the book (Pentecostal, Baptist, Agnostic and finally lands in the Reformed church). This is good to note. The book is written from Reformed theological perspective. There is so much included about different elements of the worship service that are specific to Reformed theology. If you are of a different persuasion there are so many better books on the topic of worship. I have been involved in leading worship for about 20 years. I did not find this book helpful for enhancing my understanding of worship. I received this book for free in exchange for my honest review.
dhiggins4 More than 1 year ago
“Essential Worship” by Greg Scheer is a worship handbook for leaders. This book discusses the basics of worship theology and practice. This handbook is divided into five sections: Principles, Past, Practice: Music in Worship, Practice: The Art in Worship, and People. There are also charts, diagram, lists, and discussion questions at the end of each chapter. Therefore, this book could also be used in a small group setting. Although this book was a little “above my head” and a little too wordy for me, I think this would be a wonderful handbook for a music leader or a pastor. It seems like this book would help to lead a congregation into worship. I received this book from Baker Books for my honest opinion.