Sunday, October 22, 2006

Session 8 –Todd Murray


Todd has been pastor for music and worship at the Bible Church of Little Rock, AK, since 1983. He is a theologian in his own right. Music is in his tool bag, but it is just that, a tool, a means, not an end. He led each session with songs of praise and wonder. He used John Newton hymns with new arrangements to deliver a powerful time of adoration of our Triune God. It was more than I can blog here, but I have one suggestion: GET HIS STUFF! I will be, for sure.

In this final session he talked and performed in song the idea that we can give worship angels cannot, that is to say, we can speak of Jesus Christ dying for our personal sin. He used Habakkuk 3 to explain that even when faced with calamity, we should still worship, as we see the character of God, not the circumstance of man.

As a quick aside, he addressed the worship wars by saying that it is usually about peoples’ problems and preferences, not substance. The real question should be, “what kind of worship does God like?”

Hebrews 13:10-16

2 sacrifices every believer must bring if they want to worship acceptably to God

Hebrews theme – Christ is superior – don’t back away from this

The believers this was originally written to were being tempted to compromise, and the writer is pressing the point of Jesus’ singular superiority.

Vs.10-14 – motivation for sacrifice – Christ sanctifying work
15a – manner of bringing sacrifices
15b-16a – sacrifices themselves
16b – result

Not how but who to worship – we value things instinctively


Motive #1 – Christ’s Work

Vs.10 – we can eat what they in the Tabernacle could not; we participate
11-12 – Jesus prefigured in the types

Psalm 103 – forgiveness is #1 motivation

Worship should be triggered by truth not by feelings
Music is a dangerous tool, we are often keyed by it instead of Christ’s sacrifice, and we need to be triggered by gratitude

Motive #2 – Christ’s Worth

Vs.13-14 –
Hebrews 11:24-27 – leave all else behind for the eternal
Acts 5:40-41 – more compromise = less joy in worship / More reproach = more joy in worship

(JD – Think about this carefully, the more you stand up for Christ, the more persecution you will suffer, and the more you will need to lean on God, and look for deliverance, and appreciate the release of worship, and you are valuing God above that which you are losing, respect, prestige, position, wealth, power, health, friends, jobs, and whatever else – Christ is superior)

Todd Murray – “If you are happy here (on earth), your worship will be lame.”

Joy in worship – sharing reproach of Christ means you consider Him better than other things

(JD – BTW – this section was the highlight of the conference for me – my wife was with me, and she was in agreement about what Todd was saying, my blogging words do not do this justice as to how he illustrated these things.)


15a – through Christ

Not through the rituals of the OT, on the merits of Christ alone

Look for the attitude of casualness – “I have something good to offer” – NO.

Come with the idea of bankruptcy to bring

Continually – without interruption – convicts us immediately
We talk about what we admire, or worship


15b-16a –
So broad it covers all of life

Thankful words
In OT they brought first fruits, now we take the sickle and give a harvest of thanks
Treasure Christ
Do you have to work up a “happy face”?

Thankful deeds
Broadens and elevates this to more than thank yous, to doing deeds and sharing (faithful service)

Titus 2 / Ephesians 2:10

It is all worship – don’t compartmentalize

Romans 1:9 – preaching
Serve in spirit; the word for serve is the same Greek word for worship
John MacArthur – expository exaltation – preaching as worship

Romans 12:1-2 – service = worship

Romans 14:13 – issues dealt with in love is worship – loving those whom disagree with us on secondary issues is worship

Romans 15:16 – evangelism is worship

2 Timothy 4:6 – dying is worship

Philippians 2:17 / 4:18 – giving is worship


16b – God is pleased, if you bring both

Yes, singing is worship, but elevate the other things, they have just as much value, not more value, but also not less value than the most beautiful music ever

Erase the lines

Both words and deeds

“Don’t neglect to do good and share” means “do not fear man”

Live full tilt for Christ – the fellowship of sufferings brings the most intense joy in worship

Finally, I truly enjoyed this session, and this entire conference. Thank you to Phil Johnson(our friendly Pyromaniac), Pastor Chris Pixley, and Dr. Robert Reymond, the wonderful church volunteers whom made us feel right at home, and to the new friends I met, as well as those whom I only knew through the blogging world. May God be glorified as we continue on in our worship of the Triune One.


Taliesin said...

Can I leave a comment before this is even posted? ;)

This is a subject I've thought about some (not a lot, because it's not my strong suit) and I like his statement about preferences. I agree with what I'm hearing more that the style of music is not as significant (not insignificant, but more of a preference) as the content.

Some of the worship music today that is based more heavily on the Psalms is a lot better than the hymns that came out of late 19th and early 20th Century. I really like some of the worship songs that are based on the older (18th Century or earlier) hymns that express great truths about God, Christ, and salvation.

Thanks for doing this JD. It has been a blessing.

Even So... said...

Yeah, those "gospel songs" of the early 20th "ain't got nuttin" on the great hyms of the faith.

I guess I lost or forgot to get the link Chris gave me for Todd Murray and the CD's, but contact the church. You won't believe how incredibly God-entranced the music of Todd was and is.

Jonathan Moorhead said...

Very good thoughts. I'm glad you know Chris Pixley.