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The Worship Pastor


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Introduction: Ready or Not, You're a Pastor! Part One: Pastoring Worshipers: Overarching Concepts Chapter 1: Pastor as Church Lover Chapter 2: The Worship Pastor as Disciple Maker Chapter 3: The Worship Pastor as Corporate Mystic Chapter 4: The Worship Pastor as Doxological Philosopher Part Two: Pastoring Worshipers Through the Worship Service Chapter 5: The Worship Pastor as Theological Dietician Chapter 6: The Worship Pastor as Caregiver Chapter 7: The Worship Pastor as Mortician Chapter 8: The Worship Pastor as Emotional Shepherd Chapter 9: The Worship Pastor as War General Chapter 10: The Worship Pastor as Prophetic Guardian Chapter 11: The Worship Pastor as Missional Historian Chapter 12: The Worship Pastor as Liturgical Architect Part Three: Pastoring Worshipers Beyond the Worship Service Chapter 13: The Worship Pastor as Visionary Teacher Chapter 14: The Worship Pastor as Evangelist Chapter 15: The Worship Pastor as Artist Chaplain Chapter 16: The Worship Pastor as Team Leader Conclusion: The Worship Pastor as Failure

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The modern role of the worship leader ... has emerged in recent years as a mission-critical position on church staffs" so writes Zac Hicks. But how do we characterize that role ... rock star, attendance stoker, culture broker, generational appeaser? With years of contemporary worship-leading experience, theological acumen, love of the church, and profound respect for the calling of leading God's people in declaring his glory, Hicks identifies the role as "pastor." That description is not a power-grab, but a humble acknowledgement of the sacredness of a task with so many heart implications for the people of God. Hicks explores perspectives that will inspire worship leaders and ennoble the worship practices and priorities of God's people. -- Bryan Chapell, Pastor, Grace Presbyterian Church; Author, Christ-centered Worship and Christ-centered Preaching I've said it publically, so now I'll document it. If I could choose one worship pastor to serve with for the rest of my life it would be Zac Hicks. Marinate in his book, Worship Pastor, and you'll understand why my words aren't pastoral hyperbole. I've never met a worship leader, of any age, who simultaneously exudes such a heart-enflaming grasp of the gospel and great theological care, a deep affection for Christ's church and a passion for corporate worship, creativity in building liturgy and joy in leading a service, an infectious love for his team and humility as a lead worshiper. No, this isn't Zac's eulogy; it's an introduction to a great book. Get it; soak in it; share it with many. -- Scotty Smith, Teacher in Residence, West End Community Church, Nashville TN FINALLY! Long has the worship community needed a guidebook for those understanding the role of the worship leader encompasses more than great music. This volume clearly defines the responsibilities worship pastors have to the body of Christ as: theologian, disciple, worshiper, evangelist, mentor, artist, counselor, musician, servant leader, and producer. Zac Hicks skillfully "pours himself" into every page of this book. He explains how these multiple roles, when merged together, define "the call" to pastor, nurture, disciple and love those entrusted to the care of the worship leader. Well written. Passionate. Insightful. Engaging. I highly recommend The Worship Pastor to anyone seeking to follow God's call to lead worship. -- Dr. Vernon M. Whaley, Dean, School of Music, Liberty University As the 'worship pastor' becomes a standard job title in local churches across the globe, we are in dire need of a guide for this unique vocation. Gleaning from the best Biblical, historical, and liturgical models, Zac Hicks has given us a masterpiece that is equal parts manual and manifesto. The fruit of Zac's faithful life and work as both a scholar and a worship pastor, this book is both theologically rich and readily applicable. It is pastoral theology at its very best. -- Glenn Packiam, Pastor, New Life Downtown; Author of Discover the Mystery of Faith and Secondhand Jesus The position of the worship leader has morphed into a highly influential place in church life over the past two centuries. Unfortunately, the actual role has often been relegated to picking a few songs, and not much more. Zac Hicks has laid down some important principles for worship leaders to function beyond merely choosing songs - as pastors. Worship leaders can have lasting, formative impact on congregational life - pastoring from the platform, as well as in relationships with those they serve. Worship leaders who will adapt Zac's principles and disciplines will find that their call to ministry will be widely the Glory of God. -- Dr. Edwin M. Willmington, Director of the Brehm Center for Worship, Theology, and the Arts, Fuller Seminary It's been 50 years since the first forms of contemporary worship. It's been 30 years since the position of "worship leader" developed. It's been 20 years since mainline churches adopted contemporary styles. And so it's time for a mature, multifaceted guide for those who have the stewardship for leading God's people in this worship. Zac Hicks' The Worship Pastor fills that need wonderfully. -- Lester Ruth, Research Professor of Christian Worship, Duke Divinity School This is book is an invitation to fundamentally re-envision the very identity of all of us who lead God's people in worship. We not are called to be performers and spiritual engineers. Rather, we are graced with the profound opportunity to shape a gifted response to the triune God, walking in step with God's Holy Spirit to give shape to the reception of God's Word and the response of God's people. My prayer is that this book will encourage and inspire both beginning and lifelong leaders of God's people, and lead to worship of greater theological depth and Christian joy. -- John D. Witvliet, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, Calvin College and Calvin Theological Seminary

About the Author

Zac Hicks is Canon for Worship and Liturgy at Cathedral Church of the Advent (Birmingham, AL). He writes regularly at He and his wife, Abby, have been married for over fifteen years and have four children.

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