Author Archives: Chuck Bumgardner

Hymnody of Quiet Trust in Trials

Hymnody of Quiet Trust in Trials

We sang several songs in our Sunday morning service which emphasized the believer’s quiet and confident trust in God in the midst of the trying circumstances which he puts into our lives. “Now Thank We All Our God” was written by Martin Rinkart (and translated from the German by the incomparable Catherine Winkworth).  Rinkart was… Continue Reading

Easter Hymnody

Easter Hymnody

As a general rule, each month I teach one new or more unfamiliar hymn (or occasionally two) to our congregation.  (In March, it was a newly written hymn, “Come to the Waters,” by James Montgomery Boice and Paul Jones.)   Looking toward Easter, I wanted to suggest a number of hymns that might be unfamiliar… Continue Reading

Jesus, Lover of My Soul

Jesus, Lover of My Soul

Jesus, lover of my soul, let me to Thy bosom fly, While the nearer waters roll, while the tempest still is high. Hide me, O my Savior, hide, till the storm of life is past; Safe into the haven guide; O receive my soul at last. Other refuge have I none, hangs my helpless soul… Continue Reading

Teaching Children Hymnody: Douglas Bond and Mr. Pipes

Teaching Children Hymnody: Douglas Bond and Mr. Pipes

This entry is part 2 of 1 in the series Children and Hymnody You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

This entry is part 2 of 1 in the series”Children and Hymnody”You can read more posts from the series by using the Table of Contents in the right sidebar.Our family loves to learn hymns together.  We are consciously trying to shape our children’s musical world to emphasize the good and the beautiful in music, and… Continue Reading

Hymns on Pardon

Hymns on Pardon

A few Sundays back, I structured our congregational singing around the theme of God’s pardon of guilty sinners on the basis of Christ’s death.  There is a wonderful section in John Bunyan’s work The Holy War which relates how the rebellious city of Mansoul was conquered by Prince Emmanuel, and recognizing their hopeless state, had… Continue Reading

Samuel Rodigast, "Whate'er My God Ordains Is Right"

Samuel Rodigast, "Whate'er My God Ordains Is Right"

Samuel Rodigast, “Whate’er My God Ordains Is Right” This outstanding hymn was introduced to our church back in 2009, and after singing it for a month of Sundays in order to learn it, we hadn’t sung it since because it is not in our hymnal.  Definitely a situation which needed rectifying, so I re-introduced it… Continue Reading

Tobias Clausnitzer, "Blessed Jesus, at Thy Word"

Tobias Clausnitzer, "Blessed Jesus, at Thy Word"

“Blessed Jesus, at Thy Word” makes an outstanding musical call to worship. The text is superb, and the tune LIEBSTER JESU is a good fit. As well, it is translated from the German by the incomparable Catherine Winkworth. What more could one ask?  It can be found in the Trinity Hymnal. Online, you can find… Continue Reading

The Christian and Nakedness in Art

The Christian and Nakedness in Art

Recently, I came across an article entitled “Art, Nakedness, and Redemption” by William VanDoodewaard, a church history professor at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary. In this thought-provoking treatment, he inquires how the believer ought to treat visual media which portray human nakedness — whether in classical and Renaissance art, or in modern cinema. Somehow, I suspect… Continue Reading

Wesley on prayer in "Soldiers of Christ, Arise"

Wesley on prayer in "Soldiers of Christ, Arise"

This month, our pastor preached through the Ephesians 6 passage on spiritual warfare.  We used Wesley’s “Soldiers of Christ, Arise” (to the usual tune DIADEMATA), but over the course of the series, I introduced a number of the lesser-known stanzas (out of the 12 original ones).  I was pleased beyond measure to find a number… Continue Reading

Paul and Cultural Critique: Titus 1:12-13

Paul and Cultural Critique: Titus 1:12-13

This entry is part 2 of 16 in the series Missions and Music You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

This entry is part 2 of 16 in the series”Missions and Music”You can read more posts from the series by using the Table of Contents in the right sidebar.In relation to critiquing other cultures in an age of cultural relativism, Titus 1:12-13 caught my eye a couple of years ago as I was working through… Continue Reading

Incarnation Hymnody: "O Holy Night"

Over the years, I’ve become hesitant to sing “O Holy Night,” a Christmas song widely used as a solo because of its dramatic nature and vocal difficulty.  Our common English translation is by John S. Dwight, a rather loose translation (so I understand) of the French Cantique de Noel .  Dwight was at various times in his life… Continue Reading

Incarnation Hymnody: "Angels, from the Realms of Glory"

This entry is part of 6 in the series Incarnation Hymnody You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

This entry is part of 6 in the series”Incarnation Hymnody”You can read more posts from the series by using the Table of Contents in the right sidebar.Continuing our series on incarnation hymnody, we take a look today at “Angels, from the Realms of Glory.” ___________________________ “Angels, from the Realms of Glory” is nearing its bicentennial,… Continue Reading

Insights on the Incarnation, Ancient and Modern

Here is a spectrum of theological observations on the incarnation ranging over the past 1800 years.   Helpful in the light of C. S. Lewis’s admonition regarding old texts, both for your own meditation, and for use in the congregation. Irenaeus ( – c. 202) on the Incarnation Tertullian (c. 160 – c. 220) on… Continue Reading

Incarnation Hymnody: "Come, Thou Redeemer of the Earth" and “Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming"

Incarnation Hymnody: "Come, Thou Redeemer of the Earth" and “Lo, How a Rose E'er Blooming"

This entry is part of 6 in the series Incarnation Hymnody You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

This entry is part of 6 in the series”Incarnation Hymnody”You can read more posts from the series by using the Table of Contents in the right sidebar.We here continue our series on Incarnation Hymnody.  Today: the ancient “Come, Thou Redeemer of the Earth” and the not-quite-as-ancient-but-still-very-old “Lo, How a Rose E’er Blooming”. Incorporating hymnody such… Continue Reading

Incarnation Hymnody: "Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence" and "Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus"

Incarnation Hymnody: "Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence" and "Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus"

This entry is part of 6 in the series Incarnation Hymnody You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

This entry is part of 6 in the series”Incarnation Hymnody”You can read more posts from the series by using the Table of Contents in the right sidebar. Today’s post continues our series on “incarnation hymnody.”  Today: the ancient “Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence” and Charles Wesley’s “Come, Thou Long-Expected Jesus.” ____________________ “Let All Mortal… Continue Reading

Incarnation Hymnody: "Of the Father's Love Begotten" and "Silent Night"

This entry is part of 6 in the series Incarnation Hymnody You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

This entry is part of 6 in the series”Incarnation Hymnody”You can read more posts from the series by using the Table of Contents in the right sidebar.God’s people, and especially those who would stand before the Christian assembly and lead in singing praise, ought always to be thoughtful about what they are singing.  This is… Continue Reading

Hymn Highlights: "Jesus Lives, and So Shall I"

I am always thrilled when someone introduces me to a hymn that is well-written and theologically rich, and for some reason or another has been neglected by the editors of popular hymnals.  Today, let me introduce you to one of my old friends! “Jesus Lives, and So Shall I” by Christian Gellert (original German title:… Continue Reading

Notes on "It Is Well"

This month, our pastor used Sunday evenings to preach a series covering the broad, overarching metanarrative of Scripture.  Titled “The Epic Story,” he moved in four services through Creation, Fall, Redemption, and Consummation (listen).  For congregational hymns prior to the last message, I chose “Come, We that Love the Lord” (speaking of our present experience… Continue Reading

Sing to the Lord a New Song

Sing to the Lord a New Song

This entry is part of 1 in the series Sing to the Lord a New Song You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

This entry is part of 1 in the series”Sing to the Lord a New Song”You can read more posts from the series by using the Table of Contents in the right sidebar.At least nine times, Scripture directly refers to a “new song,” via both psalmist (Ps. 33:3; 40:3; 96:1; 98:1; 144:9; 149:1) and prophet (Isa… Continue Reading