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What Does the Future Hold for Worship?

Check out my guest posting at In talking to our worship students here at Cedarville University, I believe that there are five trends in worship music for the future. Would love to have your comments here or there.

9 comments to What Does the Future Hold for Worship?

  • Jason Carnegis

    I agree that when it comes to worship music, things will be different in the future. It seems that worship music is always a little behind what current popular music is. For example, worship music now has the feel of music that was popular a few years back. But now, I feel that worship music is catching up to the current popular music of today. I have been to a few churches that had a folk sound similar to Mumford and Sons or Rend Collective. I feel that these will be the more popular style of music that worship music will follow for the next few years or so. I can’t really picture much dubstep involved in worship, but there might be some that do use it. I was very intrigued when I read about songwriting being very important, having never really written anything myself, I will consider trying to work on writing worship songs. I would be curious to see if worship leaders will write them along with other musicians in the church or would involve certain members of the church who would agree with songs that kind of tell the story of the church’s journey at the time. I agree that technology will become more and more a part of the worship service, which is both good and bad. I hope that with technology we use it wisely and don’t have it take over or replace authentic worship of God, which can be done with one acoustic guitar and many voices singing His praises. I am both encouraged by the future of worship music and challenged to keep up with current trends in music and to utilize them to help my church grow and worship God fully.

  • Roger

    Great – agree Jason. Think the songwriting aspect will be both worship leaders writing songs and encouraging (and equipping others to do so).

  • Isaac Murrell

    Music styles will definitely change over time. I FULLY agree with this. Music will continue to follow the trend of culture. It is interesting that the church is starting to implement more liturgical elements, yet it totally makes sense because our generation has seen the deficit and is deciding to make changes. Technology will continue to help organize and plan services as well as communicate to others. I definitely think that churches will continue to write their own worship songs. I have heard many churches and worship leaders express a desire to “articulate the faith of their congregation.” I’m also with Jason in not seeing dubstep make a significant appearance in worship music. Finally, it is interesting to see the correlation of folk music becoming a trend and then seeing the desire to implement more liturgical elements into services. I think there may be a connection to these.

  • Jordan Redfield

    I think there are some great points made here about the future of worship. I agree with just about every expectation given by the students. There seems to be an emphasis on the musical side of worship so far in this discussion…what changes do we think we can expect to see in other areas of worship?
    For instance, I believe a desire for authenticity in worship may result in many of the next generation being more expressive physically while they worship in song, even if that was not necessarily the culture of worship they grew up in.
    Also, I think we may see an resurgence of the emphasis on worshiping through various art forms beyond just music. Whether this will whimsically stem from simply craving something “new” or will be based on deep study of biblical worship and the ways it can be expressed, I would not be surprised to see more of the arts appearing in our corporate worship services.

  • Luke Richardson

    I have see a lot of articles flying around with titles like “Why Millennials are Leaving the Church”, and it seems like a big theme in what is driving a lot of people away is not being “irrelevant to the culture”, but being too relevant to the culture, to the point of letting the culture define the church. This conformist attitude is too similar to the rest of the world, and people see it. Why would people come to a place that is trying to be like the rest of the world when they are specifically looking for something that is not of this world? The things in this article may well be the future of worship, but whatever it is, it needs to be distinctly different from everything else in the world.

    • Amen! I’m with you on this, Luke. I am aware that the times and culture change, but your points are valid. The church needs to find the balance between being old wineskins and being like the Athenians who were only interested the next new thing. It distresses me when churches have both contemporary and traditional services. The body of Christ should not be divided. It is the job of the worship team to incorporate varying styles in a seamless manner so all members can enter in. Yes, I know it isn’t easy! My blog goes deeper into this.

  • Ansen F Lancaster

    I agree that the church should not conform to the world to the point where the world shapes the values of the church. However, the modern day church cannot afford to turn a blind eye to the culture that is changing around it. But people who are coming to church for the first time are not typically looking for something distinctly different than what they have experienced for the rest of their lives up to that point. I am not suggesting that the church be molded around the experience of first time church goers because that is simply not effective ministry, but at the same time “old style” church was the “current” style at one point in time, so why not make our churches today be “current” with what is going on in our world. The church, especially as it relates to the future of music NEEDS to be aware of the world in which it exists. I believe music will change over time, it already has since maybe ten years ago, but that doesn’t really mean that the old styles will no longer exist. Ultimately the Holy Spirit will move someone’s heart to accept the Gospel and the Church as a whole, but we need to do our part to make Jesus’ name known in the current culture in which we are in, which is done through being conscious of the world around us.

  • Robert Rhodes

    When I read the first trend bout changes in music styleI was wondering why there was nothing about resurgence in hymns. Needless to say, I was happy when I read point #4. I think it makes me excited to know that worship leaders have taken the music that is clear and true theologically (aka hymns) and begun using them again in different forms. It means that people really care about worship song content which is something I feel strongly about.

  • Hayden W Bradley

    I totally agree that worship is going to change. I believe that the folk style will start to integrate its way into the spotlight. The only thing that I worry about is, will we like the music or we will like the message. I realize that worship is going to change, but i think we need to keep what is really important at the center. This is the words and the message. Just because worship changes does not mean our hearts have to.