MWS2210EN - Composing Music for Everyday Life

Course description

In this course the student journeys through the songwriting of the Psalms and learns to apply timeless principles to composition (not necessarily only to song, but to all aspects of work/mediums). The student learns the skills of biblical and cultural interpretation, as well as how to capture the full experience of human emotion, will, and intellect in the scope of their lyrics, compositions (beyond just songwriting), arrangements, and capturing of their making.

How this course benefits students

We live in a fallen world that is filled with a wide array of injustices, emotional response, and discrepancies in truth. The world’s art is broken as a result and in need of an infusion of the gospel message. The Spirit-filled student needs the ability to think critically about all that they encounter, and they need the ability, through their craft, to point people back to God in all their work and art.

Why this course is important

All Christians are called to “make a joyful noise.” We are called in Colossians to teach and admonish each other through song and through more widely everything that we produce. Song is an educational tool for discipleship, and it is a command for every Christian. Therefore, song in any form, cannot avoid its role in shaping the whole of the heart—body, mind, and soul. Every human is subject to music’s adverse effects and benefits, and it’s our duty to think about, compose, and engage in music rightly.

Credit hours
3 hours
Subject area
Music & Worship Studies
Educational level
Learning type
Upcoming terms*
  • 2023-03 (Jan. 8, 2024 - March 4, 2024)
* Schedule subject to change. Please contact the Registrar's office with schedule questions.
Dr. David Yauk, Professor of Missional Worship

How this course relates to missional core values

Biblically based

The Psalms in particular teach us much more than prose, poetry, lyric, and style. They teach us about the ebbs and flows of the genuine human experience. They teach us through artistic nuance how to take the twisted things in the world and redeem them in palette and perspective. They are to us, a biblical example of something that is ‘made,’ but also serves as something spiritually beneficial to every vocation, work, or trade.

Missionally driven

As followers of Jesus, we are on mission in all aspects of our home, work, and play. This course distinctly ties the conversation to how we emotionally, redemptively, artistically, and worshipfully engage with all we see in creation, and all that we produce.

Contextually informed

Emotions and truth are universal. However, culture and context tends to flavor expression and worldview. The Psalms are a uniting piece. They preserve and embrace our distinctivity while never compromising the universal mandate that we are given in Scripture to “become like Christ.”

Interculturally focused

This course is built on the back of Hebrew poetry. It’s Messianic in implication, and it reflects the experience of everyone. Therefore, the use of prose, the need of a Savior, and our experience of life on earth bonds us all together. We are in need of composers who link craft to culture.

Practically minded

This course is highly practical in that it forms in the student a way of seeing all of life, not just their songwriting.

Experientially transformed

The student experiences the world of the Bible, the kingdom of God, the width of Messianic hope, and the depth of human experience, through songwriting, interpretation, and creativity.