Associate Professor releases new book “Created to Worship”

April 24, 2012, 12:25 pm

What does God want to say and do in your church’s worship service?
As a pastor or worship leader, planning a meaningful, relevant and theologically rich worship experience for your church is of the upmost importance. How do you meet the demands of the modern congregation without getting in the way of what God is doing through worship?

“Created to Worship: God’s Invitation to Become Fully Human” is a resource that provides a theology of worship in the Wesleyan tradition. This book will help you plan for a worship service in a discerning manner, while answering the question, “What does God want to say and do today?”

What prompted Peterson to author this book? “I love the church. I love communal worship. However, as a pastor navigating the infamous ‘worship wars’ it seemed like I was asking all of the wrong questions in trying to be faithful to my calling and still help folks just get along. I have written this book to offer a basic theology of worship, (why do we worship at all?) as well as explore an important yet haunting question, ‘how do we know what we are doing in worship is Christian?’” Dr. Brent Peterson shares.

This book explores not only a theology of why and what Christian communal worship is, it then offers pastors and laity some practical suggestions for making the planning of worship an act of worship in itself, rather than a chore or task that simply needs to get done. Finally, the book looks at the wonderful sacraments of Baptism and the Lord’s Supper seen through the prism of Wesleyan Theology. This resource not only offers some theology of what the hope, command and promise of these sacraments are, but also offers suggestions for how they can be faithfully and joyfully practiced in our local churches. “I am hopeful with this book that persons will fall more in love with God with a renewed passion and zeal for how communal worship can be a transforming and healing event to help us become more fully human.”

Author, speaker, professor and theologian Dawn Marva says, “Dr. Brent Peterson offers an immense contribution to the Church in this sweeping “mosaic” of a theology of worship, its practical applications and beneficial steps for planning. He handles difficult conflicts with praiseworthy balance but makes issues that are non-negotiable quite clear and why. I thoroughly recommend this book for all Wesleyans and many others!”

James K. A. Smith of Calvin College, author of “Desiring the Kingdom: Worship, Worldview, and Cultural Formation” remarks, “Worship is not just some religious duty by which we express our devotion to God. Christian worship is a way that God invites us to be human–renewing our calling to be God’s image bearers. Worship is the primary way the Spirit of God sanctifies us. That is the core argument of Brent Peterson’s incisive book, offered in a voice that is accessible, engaging, concrete and wise. The result is a gift for the church; worship leaders will be equipped to approach their task with new intentionality, and the rest of us will enter worship with a new appreciation for worship as a way of life.”

Peterson is an ordained elder in the Church of the Nazarene and currently an associate professor of theology at Northwest Nazarene University. He received his Ph.D. in liturgical studies at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. He is married to Anne and has two children, Noah and Alexis.

“Created to Worship: God’s Invitation to Become Fully Human” is available on and

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