A Theological Outline

For Indexing Music for Worship

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Compiled by Ken Puls


A Resource for Pastors, Musicians and

others who select music for worship


How well do you know the music your church sings in worship?  Can you think, for example, of a song that teaches that sin corrupts and deceives the heart? Or a song that unfolds the work of the Trinity in our salvation?

If you were to measure the depth of doctrine and the breadth of truth in your church’s music for worship, what would you find?

The following outline is a resource to help you evaluate and think theologically about church music and to better equip you to select music for worship that is biblically sound and doctrinally rich.

Listed below are five steps for using the outline. They will take some time and effort, but will pay rich dividends in your ministry to the church through music.


  1. 1.Read through and familiarize yourself with the theological outline.

  2. 2.Compile the lyrics of the music that your church sings in worship; think through each song line by line.

  3. 3.Create a theological index of music for your church by listing under each entry in the outline the titles of songs that state or affirm that entry.

  4. 4.Look over your index and evaluate the theological scope of your songs. What aspects of truth are you celebrating and affirming through music in your church? What aspects of truth are not represented in your music?

  5. 5.Customize your index for your church. Include additional entries in the outline where more detail is needed. Add more song titles to the index as you introduce new music to your church. 


Outline of Theological Topics

                [Click on a category to see full outline]


I.       PROLEGOMENA: The Revelation of God

II.      THEOLOGY:  The Doctrine of God

III.     ANGELOLOGY:  The Doctrine of Angels

IV.     ANTHROPOLOGY:  The Doctrine of Man

V.      HAMARTIOLOGY:  The Doctrine of Sin

VI.     CHRISTOLOGY:  The Person and Work of Christ

VII.    PNEUMATOLOGY:  The Person and Work of the Holy Spirit

VIII.   SOTERIOLOGY:  The Doctrine of Salvation

IX.     PRAXIS:  Christian Living

X.      MISSIOLOGY:  The Doctrine of Evangelism

XI.     APOLOGETICS:  The Defense of the Faith

XII.    ECCLESIOLOGY:  The Doctrine of the Church

XIII.   ESCHATOLOGY:  The Doctrine of Last Things

XIV.  TERMINUS:  The Worship of God


Books That Contributed to the Formation of the Outline


A Body of Doctrinal and Practical Divinity by John Gill (1809)

A Dictionary of Theological Terms by M. E. Manton (1996)

Abstract of Systematic Theology by James P. Boyce (1887)

Future Grace by John Piper (1995)

Human Nature in its Fourfold State by Thomas Boston (1720)

Manual of Theology and Church Order by John L. Dagg (1857)

Outlines of Theology by A. A. Hodge (1878)

Redemption Accomplished and Applied by John Murray (1955)

Systematic Theology by Louis Berkhof (1941)

The Baptist Confession of Faith of 1689

The Distinguishing Traits of Christian Character by Gardiner Spring (1829)

The Godly Man’s Picture by Thomas Watson (1666)


A Theological Outline for Indexing Music for Worship
Taken from A Theological Index of Church Music
©1993, 2013 Ken Puls




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