Sunday, July 22, 2012

Hymns 102

This morning we sang "Come Thou Fount."  This old hymn is very popular, but I do not sing the third verse.

"Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, Prone to leave the God I love."  I don't see how those words are appropriate in a worship service.  What are they saying?  What are we saying when we sing them?

Ironically, we later sang "In Christ Alone" which has the wonderful words, "No power of hell or scheme of man can ever pluck me from his hand."  One song confesses the temptation to apostasy; the other denies the possiblity.

I have long felt that we do not pay attention to the words of our songs very much.  Southern gospel songs, especially, focus on the conversion experience in all kinds of allegorical and narrative ways, as if we are reliving it over and over.  I prefer songs that deal with theological and historical fact, minimize "I" or "me" or "my," and praise the character of God.  No matter how moving the tune may be, many of the songs we sing don't do that.

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