Saints: J.S. Bach
J.S. Bach was one of the most accomplished composers in history. He was also a devoted follower of Jesus who sought to use his art to give glory to his Savior.
Daily Prayer: Lord, use the gifts you have given me to your glory. Amen.
Monday, January 5
Read 1 Chronicles 25:1-8. We find this note in the margin of Bach’s bible next to verse 6, “This chapter is the true foundation of all God-pleasing church music.” What do you think it was about the temple music that brought this comment? When do you sing to God?
Tuesday, January 6
Read Psalm 147. In Bach’s time there was a movement called Pietism in the church that believed that music was not to be used in worship. Bach had other ideas! What is the role of music in our lives and in the worship of God? When is music beneficial? Can it be detrimental? If so, how?
Wednesday, January 7
Read Romans 12. Bach handled the Pietists with boldness, respect and grace while maintaining his position that music could be a benefit in the church. How could Romans 12 have guided Bach through some frustrating times?
Thursday, January 8
Read Colossians 3:12-17. At the end of every composition, Bach wrote the letters SDG which stood for “Soli Deo Gloria” or, “To God be the Glory.” What does this say about Bach’s perception of himself and his work? What parts of your life could use the stamp “SDG?”
Friday, January 9
Read Matthew 15:21-28. At the beginning of every composition Bach wrote the letters JJ which stood for “Jesu juva” or, “Jesus help.” The woman coming to Jesus said similar words with boldness and humility. Do you rush into things without asking Jesus for help?
Saturday, January 10
Read Romans 13:1-7. Bach’s bible shows a special attention to the word “authority.” Bach served within the church and in secular courts. The church was also highly integrated into civic life. Bach had to juggle lots of “authorities” to do his work. What authorities do you have to work with? How do you keep Jesus as the highest authority while respecting human authorities?
Bethel Lutheran Church, St. Paul, MN – bethelstpaul.com