Worship Discussion: What Songs Should We Keep?
In the midst of the so-called worship wars in the church culture of the 21st century, I wonder what we've lost on both sides. On the one side, I see desire lost for God's ongoing work from generation to generation, fresh vision, original creativity and innovation and on the other side I see a fading appreciation for tradition and heritage. It seems that God has raised up a number of creative writers who are authoring new great hymns of the faith, new choruses of worship, and new songs of praise and I am thrilled about it. This all makes sense to me for God is the One who inspired through the mouths of the Psalmists to, "Sing Unto the Lord A New Song!" I am thankful for new melodies, new harmonies, and new lyrical visions of worship. And til Kingdom come, I don't believe this will ever stop, and perhaps even then it will never stop...perhaps the music will just get better forever.
Now I understand that style is a tough one. It is hard, and we must admit this, for someone to get along with a style that they do not like. This is a major issue for the older generation. It just does not sound like church to them. I feel that pain, I understand. Nevertheless, I want to ask: if we look carefully at the lyrics, the words, and if they are faithful to Scripture, can we not sing them by faith in worship to Jesus who is the head of the church? If we have and will continue to sings the old songs of the faith, then please sing with us the new songs of our generation? And if something is not faithful, then please take us aside and give us wise counsel from Scripture!
However, among a few young people I have noticed on occasion an attitude of spite and a yawning dislike for older songs. This too is wrong. Now, I understand that some of the older songs seem corny now. The Royal Telephone no longer rings well to our ears. It's tough to be moved about camping in Canaan's happy land or bringing in the sheaves. Some songs simply will not last or stand the test of time by the Church's usage. On the other hand realize this: many of the songs that we sing today will fade away too and will sound corny to our grandkids. And we will have to be the happy elders who will sing the faithful songs they will write forty years from now.
But all the old songs are NOT corny and many of them are simply great, having stood the test of time, and surviving for literally centuries as anthems of Christian truth. So I ask you, my peers and friends, what songs do we keep singing? What old songs are your favorites and should be in the church's lasting playlist? If you could pick 5 to keep forever what would they be?
I've got a few that come quickly to mind, but I don't want to spoil the fun. Please respond below leaving a comment!