Bob Kauflin, director of worship development for Sovereign Grace Ministries has a new book called Worship Matters: Leading Others to Encounter the Greatness of God (Crossway, 2008, ISBN 1-58134-824-X). I have just finished reading this book and think it is a wonderful resource for worship leaders focusing on biblical principles for worship and practical instructions for effective worship leading.
One of Kauflin’s main themes when he discusses worship is the role of the Cross in worship. In a chapter devoted to this topic Kauflin makes a number of helpful comments on the importance of a Gospel-centered worship service:
“The role of the Cross in worship isn’t merely a matter of singing the right lyrics. No facet of God’s truth should move our affections more than the gospel. How could the death and resurrection of the Son of God ever seem irrelevant or be sung about in a dull, uninterested way? But it happens every Sunday. Because of our sin and negligence, we lose sight of the glories of Calvary. That’s why pastors and worship leaders must make sure Calvary is always in our view. One of the most important aspects of biblical worship we desperately need to recover today is a passionate, scripturally informed exaltation of Jesus Christ and his redemptive work.
Every time we step up to lead our congregation, we should present a clear picture of “the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Corinthians 4:6). We come together to retell, remember, and respond to the Gospel and all it has accomplished.” Kauflin, 78-79.
I appreciate Kauflin’s emphasis on the Cross in corporate worship. It is the center of all that we do in the Body of Christ but I am afraid it is a theme that is forgotten or not clearly presented in worship. I would encourage you to pick up a copy of Kauflin’s new book, Worship Matters.