Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Does anyone really like "worship music?"

"There is a social, and maybe a theological, cost to replacing old ways of singing with new ones, especially with songs patterned after contemporary pop music. Pop is an inherently flaky genre, with changeability of tastes providing the only constant. This is why nobody listens to Evie anymore. She may have been hot stuff circa 1980 but current fashion moves on, and Evie is forever trapped on an album cover wearing a Dorothy Hamill haircut. On the other hand, we will sing “His Eye Is On the Sparrow,” written in 1905, until Jesus comes, even if He waits a while and a lot of sparrows fall in the meantime.
"A good worship song has staying power. It enters into tradition without obliterating it. The chief virtue of tradition is its sense of timelessness, the way it offers participants an experience that echoes down through the generations. As long as traditions promote truth and goodness, they are relevant forever. A good example of tradition is Christmas, specifically “Silent Night,” which we don’t replace every year with a new carol, as the old one works pretty well.
"Besides, church isn’t supposed to be cool. It’s a place with generally bad coffee, annoying people, and antiquated habits. If you’re having fun at church, you’re probably doing it wrong. It’s not that you have to be miserable; it’s just that you shouldn’t expect to be comfortable. Being at church is not like being in your living room, or, more to the point when it comes to worship music, being in a smoke-free underage club. Church is a place where you are challenged, where whatever cosseting you experience comes from being with fellow believers, from returning to the eternal truths as evidenced in Scripture, in prayer, in psalms, in song. So come to church and sing. Make melody in your heart, like the Bible says. Just make sure you’re singing a good song–a song even your grandmother would recognize as good, in the most enduring sense of the word."

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