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Scott SquareAbout Scott

Scott Aniol, PhD, is an author, speaker, and teacher of culture, worship, aesthetics, and church ministry philosophy. He is Chair of the Worship Ministry department at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, he founded Religious Affections Ministries, he lectures around the country in churches, conferences, colleges, and seminaries, and he has authored
several books and dozens of articles. Scott is the Editor of Artistic Theologian, a scholarly journal of worship and church ministry, and serves as chair of the Biblical Worship Section of the Evangelical Theological Society.

Scott holds a masters degree in Theological Studies (SWBTS), a masters degree in Aesthetics (NIU), and a PhD in Worship Ministry (SWBTS).


aniol-teachingScott was born in reared in Michigan where he grew up in a Christian family, attended church regularly, and received his early education in Christian schools. Scott began piano lessons in second grade, trombone lessons in fifth grade, and voice lessons in Junior High, giving him an early love for music, especially in the local church.

At age 13 Scott repented of his sins and surrendered his life to Christ in faith. During his high school years he gained a deeper love for local church ministry and especially the study of theology and philosophy.

Scott pursued a bachelor’s degree in church music at Bob Jones University in Greenville, SC. There he met his wife, Becky, and they were married in June of 2004.

Scott began local church ministry as an Associate Pastor at First Baptist Church in Rockford, IL in May of 2003. While serving there, he pursued graduate education in church music, hymnology, and choral conducting at Corcordia University (River Forest, IL), received a master’s degree in aesthetics at Northern Illinois University (Dekalb, IL), and studied theology at Detroit Baptist Theological Seminary (Allen Park, MI) and Central Baptist Seminary (Plymouth, MN). Scott was ordained to the gospel ministry by First Baptist Church in April of 2004.

While serving at First Baptist and pursuing additional graduate education, Scott began to write and speak regularly on topics of worship, music, culture, and aesthetics. He published a successful blog and was invited to speak at pastors’ conferences, seminaries, and churches in the US and around the world.

In August of 2008, Scott launched Religious Affections Ministries, a ministry of writing, speaking, and publishing in the areas of conservative Christianity. While finishing his PhD, Scott joined the faculty of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, where he chairs the Worship Ministry Department, oversees the PhD program in Worship and Music Ministry, and teaches courses in culture, aesthetics, worship, philosophy of worship and church ministry, and hymnology.

Scott has written several books and administered the publication of a dozen more through Religious Affections Ministries. He has spoken across the US and in several foreign countries at conferences, seminaries, and church, and is published in several theological journals.

Scott, his wife Becky, and their three children (Caleb, Kate, and Christopher) reside in Fort Worth, TX.


Hymns to the Living God

This book of hymns is a modest attempt to collect some of the best congregational songs available in the English language. No hymnal is perfect or adequate on its own. Yet it is our prayer that this modest collection will give honor to the living God and aid His people in singing His praises.

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By the Waters of Babylon: Worship in a Post-Christian Culture

How should churches respond to this seismic shift in their relationship with an increasingly post-Christian culture while still following the biblical mandate to reach that culture with the gospel of Jesus Christ?

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Worship in Song: a Biblical Approach to Music and Worship

Wars are raging. These are not wars of flesh and blood, but of ideas – ideas about music and its role in life and the Church. Worship in Song attempts to address these important and sometimes controversial issues from a Scriptural foundation.

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Sound Worship: a Guide to Making Musical Choices in a Noisy World

This is a book about making musical choices. But not just any choices. This is a book about making musical choices that are deliberately informed by the Word of God. It is about making choices that are discerning, wise, beneficial, and edifying. This book is about making musical choices that will bring glory to God.

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Sound Worship: Teacher’s Edition

The Teacher’s Edition for Sound Worship: A Guide To Making Musical Choices in a Noisy World by Scott Aniol includes the full text of the book, 14,000 additional words of instruction, illustration, explanation, discussion questions, student handouts, and more.

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A Conservative Christian Declaration

This declaration reaffirms a historic commitment to fully orbed conservative Christianity.

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Below you will find sermons, academic lectures, articles, conference presentations, book reviews, and more from Scott.

Repentance Through Singing - Psalm 130 | video

God’s People in Exile – Psalm 137 | audio

Communing with God – Revelation 3:14-20 | audio

Drawing Near to God in Worship – Hebrews 10:13-19 | video | audio

Holy Culture – 1 Peter 1:19-25 | video

Lessons from a Worship War for a People in Exile | audio

First Priority: Our Relationship with God | audio

Grace, Gratitude, and Glory | audio

When the Commands of God and Men Conflict | audio

The Mission Jesus Has Given Us – John 17:1-26 | audio

“Was Isaac Watts a Unitarian? Athanasian Trinitarianism and the Boundary of Christian Fellowship” – papervideo

“Practice Makes Perfect: How Corporate Worship Forms Disciples.” Biola Journal for Spiritual Formation – paper | video

“Worldview Bias and the Origins of Hebrew Worship.” Answers Research Journal – paper | video

“Evangelical Worship and the Decline of Denominationalism.” Presented at the 2014 Southwest Regional Meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society – paper

“The Mission of Worship: An Assessment of the Missional Church Movement’s Impact upon Evangelical Worship Philosophy and Practice.” Presented at the 2013 National Meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society – paper audio

“Toward a Biblical Understanding of Culture.” The Artistic Theologian 1 (2012) – paper | video

“Was Isaac Watts a Proto-Dispensationalist?” Detroit Seminary Journal 16 (2011) – paper | audio

“Form and Substance: The Regulative Principle and the Aesthetics of Scripture” – audio video

“That They May Be One”: Conservatism, Cooperation, and the Center of Christian Unity – audio

“Recovering the Lost Tools of Loving: The Missing Link Between Truth and Goodness in Christian Aducation” – audio

Toward a Biblical Understanding of Culture – audio | video

God Said Something About Worship – audio | paper

Correcting Categories: The Bible, Music, and Emotion – paper

How Can We Conserve Biblical Worship? – audio | paper

The Hymnody of the Christian Church: Function and Form – audio | paper

The Hymnody of the Christian Church: Two Roads Diverged – audio | paper

Is Music a Separation Issue? – paper

Drawing Near to God in Worship – audio

Preserving the Truth in our Worship – audio | paper | video

Conservative Christianity 101 – audio | paper

Train up a Child: Teaching the Next Generation to Worship – audio | paper

How To Evaluate Musical Communication – video

Preparation and Participation in Corporate Worship – video

“God is Really Among You” – the Evangelistic Impact of God-Centered Worship – audio | paper

How to Read a Book and Write a Review – video

Research Tools and Tricks

"Book Review: The Benedict Option by Rod Dreher." Detroit Baptist Seminary Journal 22 (2017) - review

“Book Review: Doxology and Theology ed. by Matt Boswell.” Artistic Theologian 2 (2013) – review

“Book Review: Imagining the Kingdom by James K. A. Smith.” Artistic Theologian 2 (2103) – review

“Book Review: A Neglected Grace by Jason Helopoulos.” Artistic Theologian 2 (2013) – review

“Book Review: Rhythms of Grace by Mike Cosper.” Artistic Theologian 2 (2013)  – review

“Book Review: Story-Shaped Worship by Robbie F. Castleman.” Artistic Theologian 2 (2013) – review

“Gospel-Shaped Liturgy: A Review of Recent Literature.” Artistic Theologian 2 (2013) – review

“Book Review: Creation Regained: Biblical Basics for a Reformational Worldview by Albert Wolters.” The Artistic Theologian 1 (2012) – review

“Book Review: The Glory Due His Name: What God Says About Worship by Gary Reimers.” Journal of Dispensational Theology (2011) – review

“Book Review: Art in Action: Toward a Christian Aesthetic by Nicholas Woltersdorf.” Religious Affections Minstries Blog (2011) – review

“Book Review: Christ-Centered Worship by Bryan Chapell.” Themelios (November, 2009) – review

“Book Review: God’s Word, the Final Word on Worship and Music by Dean Kurtz. Religious Affections Ministries (2008) – review











Blog Articles

Scott blogs at Religious Affections Ministries. Here are a selection of his most recent posts:

Posted: February 14, 2018, 1:00 pm
Posted: February 7, 2018, 1:59 pm
Posted: February 4, 2018, 1:00 pm
Posted: January 31, 2018, 1:00 pm
Posted: January 29, 2018, 12:49 am
Posted: January 24, 2018, 2:16 pm
Posted: January 17, 2018, 1:00 pm



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