1 Apr 2007

Books Piled on the Desk and Table

Author: Bobby Valentine | Filed under: Bobby's World, Books, Ministry, Preaching, Worship

Books Piled on the Desk and Table

“Of making many books there is no end, and much study wearies the body ” (Qoheleth 12.12b)

Never has Qoheleth’s words been so true as in the last six months. In that period of time I have moved my family two thousand miles, hosted in-laws, had a daughter in the hospital, begin a new ministry,” had books scattered to the four winds, had an office remodeled and began to build a new house (not finished yet!) … all while trying to do intensive research on the subject of worship–especially the concept of “assembly” in Scripture and Christian history. In this post I follow the customary practice of bloggers, from time to time, of listing some works they have read. Most of the material I have read since last Octoberish has been in pursuit of understanding or gaining insight into the subject of worship. Reading has been chosen based primarily on how it illuminates that subject. Here is a list of books, I have excluded the articles, that have been piled on my desk or my dinner table for the last several months.

The Study of Liturgy (Cheslyn Jones, Geoffry Wainwright, etc)

Reading & Preaching the Scriptures in the Worship of the Church: The Patristic Age (Hughes Oliphant Olds)

Reading & Preaching the Scriptures in the Worship of the Church: The Medieval Period (Hughes Oliphant Olds)

A Generous Orthodoxy (Brian McLaren)

Becoming Friends: Worship, Justice, and the Practice of Christian Fellowship (Paul J. Wadell)

Emerging Worship: Creating Worship Gatherings for New Generations (Dan Kimball)

Spilt Grape Juice: Rethinking the Worship Tradition; Unbroken Bread: Healing Worship Wounds; Empty Baskets: Offering Your Life as Worship (all by Mike Root)

Enter His Courts With Praise: Old Testament Worship for the NT Church (Andrew E. Hill)

Israel’s Praise: Doxology Against Idolatry and Ideology (Walter Brueggemann)

Worship in Ancient Israel: The Essential Guide (Walter Brueggemann)

The Service of God (William Willimon)

Immanuel in Our Place: Seeing Christ in Israel’s Worship (Tremper Longman III)

Engaging With God: A Biblical Theology of Worship (David Peterson)

God and World in the Old Testament (Terence E. Fretheim)

Exodus and Exile: The Structure of the Jewish Holidays (Monford Harris)

The Psalms in Israel’s Worship, 2 Vols (Sigmund Mowinckel)

Sacrifice in the Bible (ed. Roger T. Beckwith)

The Feast of the World’s Redemption: Eucharistic Origins and Christian Mission (John Koenig)

Introduction to Christian Worship (James F. White)

Worship Seeking Understanding (John D. Witvliet)

Corporate Worship in the Reformed Tradition (James Hastings Nichols)

Worship and the Hebrew Bible (eds. Patrick Graham, Rick Marrs)

God’s Mountain: The Temple Mount in Time, Place and Memory (Yaron Z. Eliar)

From Temple to Meeting Place: The Phenomenology and Theology of Sacred Space (Harold Turner)

The Jewish Roots of Christian Liturgy (ed. Eugene J. Fisher)

Worship, Community and the Triune God of Grace (James Torrance)

There are other books that I have had to investigate but was not able to digest in toto. There were 24 lectures from the ACC lectures from 1920 to about 1970; numerous articles in various journals ranging from Mission Messenger to Firm Foundation to Millennial Harbinger to Worship Leader. And of course one volume that was continually open was the sacred volume.

I am ready for a break.

Bobby Valentine

21 Responses to “Books Piled on the Desk and Table”

  1. Dee O'Neil Andrews Says:

    Wow! Are you writing a book yourself on the subject of worship, Bobby? Is that why all the intensive study?

    I guess you DO need a break! Well, drop by Finding Direction once in a while and that should offer a SMALL break, I hope.

    I didn’t know that y’all decided to build a house and are going so, hunh? You were talking about it not being finished, but you can have been working on one THAT long. I mean, Tom & I have been building our house since last August and it’s going to be several more weeks before it’s finished. It’s going really slowly at the moment, so pray for us it will start moving faster and we can get it in. This small townhouse full of boxed up stuff we’ve now been living in for a year has gotten really old!


  2. Bob Bliss Says:

    Bobby, has anyone done a history of worship practices in the restoration movement? One that details the kinds of things done in the assembly, the songs they sung, and even the flaps that occurred over introduction of new practices?

  3. Matt Says:

    Do you ever read any Marva Dawn on worship?

  4. Falantedios Says:

    Speaking of books, I’m looking for some good resources with which to teach a class on The Book of the Twelve (I hate ‘Minor Prophets’). I have Homer Hailey’s commentary in mind, and I have a commentary by a John Phillips. Do you have any suggestions for either commentary use or a well-done study guide type resource?


  5. Neva Says:

    Wow!!!! I definitely feel outclassed by the books you read. I doubt I am smart enough to get through one. But I am very thankful for people like you who are genius and are also kind enough to share the info with me. 🙂

  6. Matt Says:

    Elizabeth Achtemeier’s book – Preaching from the Minor Prophets is good if you one something short and sweet.

  7. Frank Bellizzi Says:

    That’s quite an array. Any favorites or pleasant surprises among the books?

    W.B. subtitled his book “The Essential Guide”? Just when we thought we’d never see that again.

    Actually, Bobby, you don’t need any of those books. I’ve written a short liturgical guide for Churches of Christ that covers most everything:

    2 songs, a prayer, another song, the Lord’s Supper.

    At this point, a congregation may sing another song in order to partition the Lord’s Supper from a different part of worship, the contribution. If no song is sung, the one presiding at the table must offer a disclaimer that begins: “Separate and apart from the Lord’s Supper, . . . “

    Following the contribution, another song (with the congregation standing on “if it’s convenient”).

    Sermon (preceded by a 2-minute warm-up monologue offered by the preacher), invitation song, closing announcements, song, closing prayer.

  8. Josh Says:

    This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. Stoned-Campbell Disciple Says:

    Dee, it is sort of an open secret but yes I am collaborating on a book on worship but especially the significance of the assembly in biblical faith. BTW I loved the photos of your “rooms” … my house doesn’t have rooms yet.

    bob, there are some really good articles on the history of worship in the SCM in Encounter and there are some thesis done as well. A classic that is “historical” is Robert Haldane’s Views of the Social Worship of the First Churches. Lynn McMillion’s Restoration Roots has significant material on early restoration worship. Keith Watkins “The Breaking of Bread: An Approach to Worship for the Christian Churches (Disciples of Christ) is good. Dan Dozier’s Come Let Us Adore Him has some good historical material within it. Then there is the narrow and polemical book by William Woodson and J.E. Choate Sounding Brass and Clanging Symbols. Our new book will have a significant historical element.

    Matt, Marva Dawn is an insightful writer. Her Reaching Out Without Dumbing Down I had read several years ago thus it is not on this list but it is in the recommended reading. I think she is overly critical of somethings but she has some great stuff on God and worship. Her book on the Sabbath is better … in my opinion.

    Nick, there are some very good commentaries on the Twelve. For outstanding exposition and theological insight James Limburg and Elizabeth Achtemeier in the INTERPRETATION series can’t be beat. Harold Shank covers the first half of the Twelve in the College Press NIV series and it is very good. Douglas Stuart’s volume in the Word Biblical Commentary is also superior but it may be more technical than what you are looking for. There are a number of outstanding volumes on individual scrolls of the Twelve but they tend to be pricey and verbose. But if you want a list email me.

    Neva, I am hardly a genius. I couldn’t even find my keys this morning but I thank you for the kind words.

    Frank I am sure the publisher has something to do with the title of WBs book. Certainly not all the books on my list are created equal. Some I found that I was arguing with nearly every page.

    Josh when you graduate that is when the real education begins. But college is essential prep for it.

    Thanks everyone.

    Bobby Valentine

  10. Bob Bliss Says:

    Thanks for the list.

  11. Messianic Gentile Says:

    BTW I love Isreal’s Praise by Brueggemann. Great book. Taught me some important ideas…

    Let me add a small book to your list. A fast and easy read, it is a book of sermons, but will blow your mind. It is FOR ALL GOD’S WORTH: TRUE WORSHIP AND THE CALLING OF THE CHURCH by N. T. Wright.

    Many blessings…

  12. Zack Says:

    I’ve got a bunch of books I’ve been trying to read for years too buddy. Good luck to all of us.
    Be blessed!

  13. Anonymous Says:

    This to Frank. I tried leaving this on your site but it would not let me. I hope Bobby allows this to be read.
    Well, Frank you do speak frankly. I read a post On B.V. blog and you need to change what you said about being a Christian on your personal info. When you slammed what many do in the churches of Christ you just may have removed yourself from the name Christian.

    Why be a jerk? Why be so arrogant? I have a good name for you “arrogant Frank”
    Think about it?

  14. Messianic Gentile Says:

    Apparently Anon has not read my blog. But then I have not read Franks… until now. I think I will have to go for a visit.

    Too bad Anon does not use his name. No guts?

    Many blessings…

  15. Stoned-Campbell Disciple Says:

    Dear Anonymous,

    Sometimes we need a sense of humor more than anything else. It is so valuable it just might be a spiritual gift. Frank was using something that is so common among us to make a humorous point. I did not take offense and I think you should take it for what it is.

    You have over reacted to Frank and have behaved in a manner that some might also think is quite offensive.

    I have to agree with Mike on a point to. If you are going to call Frank out on this please have the honor to sign your name to it.

    Bobby Valentine

  16. Greg Says:

    Bobby: I would hope that those books have a lot of pictures!

  17. Frank Bellizzi Says:

    If “Anonymous” only knew the REAL reasons I have no right to the name “Christian.” Now THAT would be cause for excommunication!

    Anonymous, people are welcome to disagree with me at my blog, provided they’re responding to something I said AT MY BLOG. You sent to my blog your response to something I said here.

  18. Sonny Says:

    You have over reacted to Frank and have behaved in a manner that some might also think is quite offensive.

    Yes, I can see where I was offensive. But yes, Frank was offensive. I guess that is alright. Make fun of the Lord’s church that seems to be the fun of the day. You may say it was just humor. If so it was poor taste of humor. Many of you have made it a practice to lead others to hate what has been done in the church in years past. I do not do many things in the ways we did them at one time, but to make fun is wrong.

    You are right that I am a coward. I can only say I am sorry and do better.

    Frank, excommunication is not mine to dish out. I just want you to think about how you sound. In our terminology I would certainly be labeled conservative. I do (many would disagree) have an open mind. I do want to learn. I want to be God’s person. I am quick to speak out on things. I am working tremendously hard on how I say things. Yes, I have a long way to go. I have proven that to you all.

    I am old enough and been around enough to know that things will not change and I wish I could quit fighting it. When I read harsh slams as you did. It hurts. That is why I reacted as I did. No bobby it is not just humor and I do have a life so don’t tell me to go and get one. A sense of humor is not a gift it is acquired by hearing humor. This was not humor.

    The Internet and blogging is open to the world. That is why it is so hard to tell my name. I read everyone. If it is out there I try to read it. For me it is not about agreeing or disagreeing. it is about learning. I study the word and read what others say and think.

    I am on a search for truth. I want to know the truth. I want to be God’s person and not a clone of anyone, except Jesus. I have lived in a conservative world and will continue to live there until I see a need to get out.

    I do not judge you and will be happy with God’s judgment of me. I do not agree with the direction of you. Bobby I have known of you since you were a kid at Chisholm Hills. I know you parents, good people. They have been great servants. I personally did not agree with the move that many of you made years ago but who am I to tell you what to do. I don’t think anyone that made that move can say that I have been hateful or mean towards them at any time. If so I will apologize immediately.

    Not only is the world a cruel place but to often we in the kingdom are cruel also. I speak this about all of us: Consv. & Libr.

    This is to long, I am sorry for being offensive. One last thing. I have learned that typing a blog there is no way to understand what is in a persons heart. I have misread Frank and others and others have misread me. Believe it or not I seek after unity
    Sonny Owens

  19. Stoned-Campbell Disciple Says:

    Sonny Owens,

    How are you doing! It has been a long time. If my memory is not to faulty here I am quite certain we went on a campaign to southern Alabama together years ago–Citronelle perhaps with Basil Overton. I know we may have had a class or two together at IBC.

    It just may be that we have talked before on my blog without me knowing your name.

    Sonny, communication is always difficult and doing it through the medium of a blog just magnifies those difficulties. And then on top of that it is our nature to assume the worst of the person we are talking too.

    Now believe it or not I try not to make fun of most folks. I have and probably will again make fun of myself and I have tried to be humorous about our own quirks. And I do believe we have quirks … recognizing such does not mean I am attacking the Lord’s Church.

    You say you are a seeker of truth. Well I am too. I want to serve God and his Christ as much as you do. The fact that you and I may hold different understandings of some things does not negate that Truth is out there. But I would wager that neither of us have it all figured out. And because I have moved away from some positions that I now believe are wrong does not mean I have abandoned biblical authority … it is precisely because I honor Scripture that I made such changes … Just as brother Jim Massey used to tell us. He was not afraid to change his mind and continued to do so until he died … I want to be like that great man.

    On a different note I do not recall telling you to “get a life.” Nor did I call you a coward. I simply said if you are going to speak as you did to sign your name.

    You are also correct that the world is cruel. And sadly the church often is as well. There is a reason for this however. It is because we still have not surrended ourselves to be crucified with Christ. If we had done so we would be filled with the Holy Spirit and cruelty is not a Fruit of the Spirit. No righteousness, joy and peace are characteristics of the Spirit.

    Well at the very least Sonny it is great to hear from you. I am delighted you are reading my blog. I don’t try to be offensive here but sometimes I fail at that too. I hope you will be around and share your point of view.

    Now if you need some good reading, I know of a book called “Kingdom Come: Embracing the Spiritual Legacy of David Lipscomb and James Harding” you might find scintillating.

    Feel free to email me at Bobby.Valentine@paloverdechurch.org

    Bobby Valentine

  20. Sonny Says:

    About getting a life I was just beating you to the punch. I called myself a coward.

  21. Brian Nash Says:

    A true coward would have never come forward the way you did. I hope that you continue to responed. We all need to have healthy discord. Whether we always agree or not we need to keep the cross of Christ firmly in sight. That is where we have common ground. That is where we will have Unity.

    I wish you peace.
    Brian Nash

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