I am woefully unprepared to answer the question myself. Had never thought of it. (Who has? Probably some!)
So, Bach? His Passions? Probably.
Still, I have to give Rev. Tony Pittenger credit: The Messiah is indeed an amazing “sermon”. And, seriously, it is hard to come up with good titles and subtitles!!
Handel’s Messiah impresses me not only because I am familiar with it generally, but also because such a big deal was made of it at in a secular music class I took at a secular university!
I’ll spare you the details, but it was a HUGE jump from various street passion plays to Handel’s Messiah. It was a HUGELY different undertaking than anything Handel had done previously. It was just . . . inspired on so many levels!
So what did a wise man do? A Lutheran pastor began The Messiah: The Greatest Sermon Ever Sung as a “listening Bible study.” While listening to the music, Pastor Pittenger gave brief explanations of both the biblical texts sun and the music played.
Get it. Give it. Use it for personal or family devotions, a Bible study, a small group, an Advent candlelight party—which are only gaining in popularity, coupled with tea and other tasties. How can you go wrong? What a great way to focus on Scripture in a beautiful, compelling manner, friendly to just about anyone who’s heard the Messiah!
This is totally going on my wish list.
Also, this excellent book has had a price drop so I’m letting you know about it. 🙂
Happy reading, writing, and, ahhhh, listening!