Lester Ruth


Lester Ruth: Mistaking Glasses for the Eye Chart (2017 Commencement)

The Rev. Dr. Lester Ruth returned to IWS to deliver the 2017 Commencement address on June 18, 2017. His message: let us not mistake the means and ministry of worship for its end—only one worship leader can make the Living God present to us!
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Lester Ruth: Is God Just Hanging Out on the Sofa? (Initial Wonderings about the Inactivity of God)

A few years ago I published in a couple of places a review that I had done about the Trinitarian quality of the most used contemporary worship songs in the United States. The study looked at the lyrics of any song that had appeared on one of CCLI’s twice-a-year list of the most used 25...
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Lester Ruth: The Promise of God’s Presence

The promise of God’s presence is fulfilled. According to Matthew, that is how the Gospel begins. In interpreting the meaning of the angel’s declaration to Joseph that Mary would bear a son to be named “Jesus,” Matthew states all this took place to fulfill the promise recorded in the prophecy of Isaiah: the one to...
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Lester Ruth: God’s Presence (Introduction)

God spat. At first glance such an assertion might sound irreverent, even dangerously blasphemous. How dare I attribute such a disgusting act to the Divine! Yet in my mind I am following the lead of the Gospels, at least if we see the actions of Jesus as not only the ministry of a carpenter from...
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Lester Ruth: Don’t Lose the Trinity! A Plea to Songwriters

Let this piece serve as an earnest appeal to songwriters: please don’t lose the Trinity as you write songs! Why would I say such a thing? Because my study of the most used contemporary worship songs in the last fifteen years shows that there is a danger our songs reflect love for a god who...
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Lester Ruth: Bibliography for Liturgical History

Source: Dr. James F. White Edited by: Mark A. Torgerson and Lester Ruth Download the Bibliography for Liturgical History
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Lester Ruth: Worship True to God

And Jesus said, “Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.” (John 4:23-24; NIV) Surely this divine desire has...
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Lester Ruth: A Rose by Any Other Name

How would you classify your worship service? It is “contemporary” or “traditional”? Are those terms too limited? Would the terms found in some recent youth ministry training materials be more helpful? In that case, would you classify your worship as “linear” or “organic”? Are you still at a loss for the right classification? Would these...
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