May 19, 2008

Weird Worship Meme

Steve recently tagged me with this meme that requires me to list 5 worship songs that I consider to be weird. This turned out to be more of a challenge than I originally thought it would be.

1. David Crowder Band - Here Is Our King: After complaining about this song to a friend of mine, it was explained to me that this song was written regarding the tsunami that hit Asia several years ago. After knowing the inspiration behind the song, it did make it easier to understand the lyrics, but I still have a hard time singing this song. For those unfamiliar with the song, here are the lyrics: From wherever spring arrives/To heal the ground/From wherever searching comes the look itself/A trace of what we’re looking for/So be quiet now and wait/The ocean is growing/The tide is coming in/Here it is/Here is our king, here is our love/Here is our God Who’s come/To bring us back to him/He is the one, he is Jesus, Jesus/And what was said to the rose/To make it unfold/Was said to me here in my chest/So be quiet now and rest/Majesty, finally/Majesty, finally here/Majesty, finally

On one hand, I can take the lyrics to mean that God is God in any circumstance. On the other hand, I pause at the “ Here is our God Who’s come/To bring us back to him;” does this mean that “Here is God to wipe us all out to take us to heaven?”

2. Charlie Hall – Marvelous Light: I understand this song just fine, but I have trouble with songs that instruct the singers to perform an action. This song, for example, says “Lift my hands and spin around.” When this song is sung, the congregation is typically divided into those that do, and those that do not perform the action. Typically at a singing of this song, the youth of the church will really get into this song to the point of being silly, spinning around and around throughout the song. This action will of course not go over too well with the older members, who view the youth's actions as being irreverent. Personally, I don't think action songs should be sung at a church unless the congregation as a whole typically participates in the action.

3. William Cowper - There is fountain filled with blood: I know this song is a classic, and I've sung it many time. Yet the imagery of a giant fountain of blood that sinners are plunged beneath has never quite escaped my mind whenever we sing this hymn. I personally am glad that the blood of Christ, while very real, is only encountered in the metaphoric sense by believers. [Although it could be pointed out that too many Christians lack true depth and sincerity nowadays because so much of our faith is metaphoric]

4. Martin Smith - I Could Sing Of Your Love Forever: I've sung this song countless times, but for a long time I never really thought about the words. Why, exactly, is it foolish to dance before God? Doesn't the Bible mention dancing multiple times? I'm not speaking of choreographed dancing in church, but true, honest-to-goodness dancing before God. Also, I'm pretty sure that the world isn't going to dance with joy when they see the light. Those who see the light kinda cease to be “the world.” To the best of my knowledge, the world as a whole isn't going to see the light until judgment day, which isn't going to be a happy time for the world.

5. Give me that old time religion: I don't have a problem with this song if it's being sung in regards to not changing the faith. We as believers aren't supposed to add to or subtract from the Gospel. But I've heard this song quoted many times by people who oppose any type of change in how the church corporately worships. The people who quote this song the most seem to believe that church should not change from how it was conducted in the 1800's. Yet I wonder if any of those church leaders ever think about how church in the 1800's had changed from church in the 100's. Yes, I agree that too many churches today rival secular events with their light shows, choreographed performances and feel-good messages. I also agree that some churches today seem to take pride in how untraditional they can be. But Jesus went to the tax collectors and prostitutes; He did not wait for them to conform to the legalistic Judaism of the day before He spoke to them. I object to the idea that a simple hymn that was probably well-intentioned being used as an argument for expecting the world to conform to the church's standards while the world is still lost.

Now for the fun: I'm tagging Jason, because I'm interested in what he considers weird; Restoring the Years, because I think she's very insightful when it comes to music; anyone who reads this post and has not been previously tagged for this meme – consider yourself tagged!

1 comment:

  1. Sheepishly, and with all due humility, I admit that I couldn't do this meme if I wanted to. I don't listen to, or know any "praise" music at all.

    But if you want to someday do a meme about the cantadas of Bach or rich lyric pieces of Buxtehude...I'm there!



Thank you so much for caring enough to leave a comment! I typically don't respond to each separate comment here on my blog. If you would like to ask me a question and have my reply, please feel free to e-mail me at