Christian dance has persisted throughout the history of the church, despite many official decrees against it. Christian churches that have incorporated dance and other stylized gestures in worship have benefited from a profound way of expressing their praise and enacting the gospel message. Dance as worship is one manifestation of the Spirit’s ongoing activity in the church.
There are considerable resources for black songs among African-American denominations and churches that are now widely available for churches in every tradition. This article is especially helpful in describing the different types of songs that have developed from the black worship tradition.
The Holiness Movement did not readily record its liturgy. Worship followed a common pattern familiar to its members. A reporter describing a camp meeting in Quinebaug, Connecticut, wrote: “Meetings were held from day to day, after the usual order.” The scarcity of printed orders of worship makes exploration of this topic difficult. There are, however, some prose descriptions of portions of worship that provide sufficient information to reconstruct a typical revivalistic, camp meeting service.
The holiness movement traces its origins to John Wesley. The worship of the holiness churches, however, was shaped primarily by the liturgical forms of the camp meeting movement.
The biblical conception of God as holy has profound significance for the philosophy of the worship arts. The biblical worshiper encounters the Lord as the Holy One. The basic connotation of holiness (Hebrew qodesh) is not the goodness or righteousness of Yahweh but the fact that he is encountered as one “set apart,” sacred or sacrosanct, unlike that which is experienced in the ordinary events of life.
Revolution has recently come to corporate worship in the American Holiness Movement.