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The Ultimate Guide to Worship Arts

by Dr. Arnfield P. Cudal

 

Answering the questions…

 

There have been many misunderstandings and myths about the role of music in church. These myths have led many to believe that music is a barometer of their devotion to God, an elixir for the spirit, a pathway to God, or a channel for the presence of God.

 But the Bible makes no such claims.

Drawing on lifelong church ministry, study, reflection, and observation, international music producer, composer, music director, organist / choirmaster, and pianist, Dr. Arnfield P. Cudal points to a better way to gauge the realness of our worship and demonstrate our true love to God.

 All the music needed for proper emotional expression, spiritual refreshment, and development — the psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs — is found in this ultimate guide to worship arts: the Bible.

 I was delighted. You are bringing the theology of the Bible to bear on the practice of songs, music, and worship.   Churches desperately need this teaching!  I greatly benefited from your book.

Jeff S. Heslop, Th.D.
Professor of Bible and Theology
Dean, Tyndale Theological Seminary & Biblical Institute Learning Center
Mason, OH

Straight talk from the Bible as to what true worship is and what music is not. I find this very helpful and liberating.

Katherine Caulton
High School Graduate
McKinney, TX

Available from Amazon.com  and HARK Publications.

 

On May 6, 2016, Dr. Richfield Cudal concluded his seminar at NATID-ASAN CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY CHURCH on The Doctrines of Salvation in the Book of Romans. There were about 33 men and women who received certificates of attendance for the five night module. Many of them decided to enroll at HARK THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY for a degree on the Master of Arts in Biblical Studies.

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Millennials, and those looking for meaningful ways to enhance their relationship with God, are seeking for Biblical truth in art and music. The source for truth is the Word of God and so putting the Word of God to musical settings is an excellent way of communicating Biblical truth.

A millennial writes, “There comes a point where the transcendent and the sacred shout out for a place in our hearts and commitment. Call it longing for purpose and/or for a connection with the Divine. These cannot be found in the culture; they are radically counter-cultural.”

Some are looking for truth in high church music, which draws from an array of music compiled over a millennia, with many musical settings containing whole passages of the Psalms, Songs, & Hymns of the Bible. The melding of musical art and the words of Scripture not only teach enduring theological truths, it emulates the simplicity and mystery of the Gospel, and adorns the loftiest of praise, using words already provided for in Scripture.

It may be that pursuits for the superlative in music are young people’s attempts to satisfy the deepest of spiritual yearnings. Those who are seeking the truth are promised to find it (John 8:32), which may only be found in Jesus Christ, who is the Word of God (John 1:1) and who said, “I am the truth” (John 14:6).

One such offering is Sir Charles Villiers Stanford’s Beati Quorum Via, an artful musical setting for an enduring truth found in Psalm 119, presented by the Bukidnon State University Chorale of Malaybalay, Philippines, and introduced by singer, lyricist, and Patrick Henry College student, Hannah Cudal.

See related post:

A Message to Millennials: Don’t Miss the Point of Liturgy

 

Setting the words of Scripture to music is a practice modeled in the Bible by King David himself. David set a precedent in establishing a tradition of setting texts of Scripture to music.

Ever since, for almost three millennia now, the Psalms, Hymns, and Spiritual Songs contained in God’s word have been set to music. Some of the greatest songwriters of our day have carried on the tradition of creating musical settings for the pure words of Scripture.


C. Hubert H. Parry: I Was Glad (Psalm 122)

C.V. Stanford: Beati Quorum Via (Psalm 119)

Samuel S. Wesley: Blessed Be the God and Father (Hymn of 1 Peter 1)


While the Western church throughout history has amassed a treasure trove of scripture songs, the Kingdom of Thailand is a country where Christianity is just now beginning to bloom. Establishing Biblical traditions and setting Biblical precedents for the Thai Church is key to equipping the Thai Church for spiritual growth and edification. At the same time, these musical endeavors not only preserve the culture but enrich it as well.

We are pleased to present this music-arts video, the first of its kind, to the Thai Church. It highlights a Hymn of praise and adoration found in Philippians 2:5-11.


Three criteria were used in the production of this video:

1. The words need to be a hymn from the Bible
2. The melody must be composed in the music-language of the Thai people
3. The song must be presented in the most culturally-honoring and expressive way possible


We at HARK Publications are privileged to have collaborated with the members and faculty of the Bunditpatanasilpa Institute of Fine Arts and Culture, who are representatives of the Royal Court Musicians of the Kingdom of Thailand, in presenting this musical offering from the Christian Scriptures.


“…for the word of the Lord endureth forever.”
-from the Hymn of I Peter 1:25



 

Monday, February 8, Dr. Richfield Cudal will be in Iloilo City to teach the Word of the Lord to Pastors and Workers. Classes will be in the morning and evening.

Modules are: The Redemptive Plan of God through the Ages and The Incomparable Lord Jesus Christ.

Monday, February 15, Dr. Cudal will be in Iligan City to teach lessons on his book: The Incomparable Lord Jesus Christ.

Sunday, February 21, he will be preaching the Word at Bethany Covenant Baptist Church.