In the vast realm of literature on worship, Terry L. Johnson’s Reformed Worship stands out as a comprehensive guide that carefully navigates the waters of scriptural principles, historical context, and practical application. Johnson, a seasoned pastor and theologian, delves into the heart of worship, seeking to align it with the principles laid out in the pages of the Bible.

From the very outset, Johnson establishes a solid foundation by grounding worship in the biblical narrative. He skillfully weaves together Old and New Testament passages, shedding light on the continuity of God’s redemptive plan and its implications for the worshiping community. One can sense the author’s commitment to a thoroughly biblical worship framework, as evidenced by statements such as, “True worship is nothing less than obedience to God’s Word,” (p. 27).

The strength of this volume lies in its ability to balance theological depth with practical insights. Johnson avoids the pitfalls of becoming overly academic, ensuring that his exploration of theological concepts remains accessible to a wide readership. The author provides valuable perspectives on the nature of God, the role of the church, and the significance of the sacraments in worship, all while maintaining a pastoral tone that resonates with those both in the pulpit and the pew.

As a Reformed pastor, I appreciate Johnson’s unwavering commitment to the regulative principle of worship, which insists that corporate worship should be shaped and governed by what is explicitly commanded or implicitly revealed in Scripture. This commitment is evident when he states, “In worship, God is the audience, and His Word is the script,” (p. 89). Such clarity is a refreshing departure from trends that sometimes prioritize innovation over fidelity to God’s revealed will.

The revised and expanded edition of Reformed Worship incorporates valuable updates that address contemporary challenges while staying true to the book’s foundational principles. Johnson engages with issues such as the use of technology in worship, maintaining a thoughtful and discerning approach that reflects a commitment to both tradition and relevance.

Throughout the book, Johnson emphasizes the vital role of preaching in worship, describing it as the means by which God addresses His people. This pastoral emphasis is encapsulated in the statement, “The ministry of the Word is God addressing His people. This is a holy moment,” (p. 112). Pastors, worship leaders, and congregants alike will find encouragement and guidance in this biblical perspective on preaching.

In conclusion, Reformed Worship by Terry L. Johnson is a commendable resource for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of worship rooted in biblical principles. Its careful blend of theology and practice, combined with the author’s pastoral sensitivity, makes it a valuable addition to the library of those committed to thoughtful and God-honoring worship.

I have not received any compensation for providing a positive review. My opinions are entirely my own and reflect my sincere evaluation of the book.

Title: Reformed Worship: Worship That is According to Scripture (Revised and Expanded)
Author: Terry L. Johnson
Publisher: Reformation Heritage