Author Archives: Scott Aniol

Joan Pinkston’s best hymn tune

Joan Pinkston’s best hymn tune

In my first church ministry, we used Hymns of Grace and Glory, edited by my undergraduate theory professor, Joan Pinkston. It’s a great hymnal for many reasons, and one of those is the several excellent hymn tunes composed by Pinkston herself. All of them are good, but in my opinion the best tune she composed is… Continue Reading

But we never talk like that in real life!

But we never talk like that in real life!

It appears today that “authenticity” has become the most important virtue. In one sense this is good. Hypocrisy is a vice condemned by Scripture (Mathew 23:27). I often think about this with regard to my children. Never would I want them to watch me act one way in public with others and think to themselves,… Continue Reading

The “market” for our hymnal

The “market” for our hymnal

A friend recently asked me, “What is your target market for your hymnal?” It’s a fair question. In the modern Christian hymnal publishing industry, editors have a target market in mind, and they choose to include songs that are commonly sung in that market so that they can sell hymnals. Usually, they aim for a… Continue Reading

A new hymn pairing

A new hymn pairing

As we move closer to publishing our print hymnal, Hymns to the Living God, I want to continue to highlight some of the new and unique selections that you will both find in the hymnal and can download for free even now. One of the unique hymns about which I am most pleased is not… Continue Reading

New Hymn by David Oestreich and Josh Bauder

New Hymn by David Oestreich and Josh Bauder

In January I mentioned the sudden passing of our friend, David Oestreich. David had been a supporter and occasional contributor here on the blog, and his tragic death due to complications from pneumonia was a shock to us all. David was quite an accomplished poet. He had several of his poems published in various collections,… Continue Reading

25 more hymns added to our free online collection

25 more hymns added to our free online collection

We’ve just added 25 more hymns to our free, downloadable collection of hymns. These were the final 25 needed for our print hymnal, so we’ve begun to prepare that and are aiming for an August 1 publication date! The following hymns were added: “A Charge to Keep I Have” | BOYLSTON “A Mighty Fortress Is… Continue Reading

I’m Still Here, Too

I’m Still Here, Too

The most recent issue of Frontline Magazine is apparently getting a bit of buzz. I don’t subscribe, but through friends I’m getting caught up. It appears that the Fall 2016 issue, “Convergence,” caused a stir with how it treated the younger generation who grew up in fundamental Baptist churches. As a sort of response, Mark Ward… Continue Reading

What We Gained When We Lost Our Hymnals?

What We Gained When We Lost Our Hymnals?

A few weeks ago I linked to a blog post by Tim Challies in which he listed things we lost when “we” gave up the hymnal, but then basically said, “But I don’t think we should go back.” Yesterday he followed up on that with a new post, “What we Gained When We Lost Our… Continue Reading

Thine Be the Glory

Thine Be the Glory

Thine be the glory, risen, conquering Son; endless is the victory Thou o’er death hast won. Angels in bright raiment rolled the stone away, kept the folded grave-clothes where Thy body lay. Refrain: Thine be the glory, risen, conquering Son; endless is the victory Thou o’er death hast won. Lo! Jesus meets us. Risen from… Continue Reading

Good Friday

Good Friday

AM I a stone and not a sheep   That I can stand, O Christ, beneath Thy Cross,   To number drop by drop Thy Blood’s slow loss, And yet not weep? Not so those women loved   Who with exceeding grief lamented Thee;   Not so fallen Peter weeping bitterly; Not so the thief… Continue Reading

Review Article: You Are What you Love: The Spiritual Power of Habit

Review Article: You Are What you Love: The Spiritual Power of Habit

For several years now James K. A. Smith has been helpfully speaking and writing on the subject of liturgical formation in education and worship. His first two volumes on this subject, Desiring the Kingdom: Worship, Worldview, and Cultural Formation (Baker, 2009) and Imagining the Kingdom: How Worship Works (Baker, 2013), have reintroduced several important biblical… Continue Reading

My Song is Love Unknown

My Song is Love Unknown

My song is love unknown, my Savior’s love to me; love to the loveless shown, that they might lovely be. O who am I, that for my sake my Lord should take frail flesh and die? He came from his blest throne salvation to bestow; but men made strange, and none the longed-for Christ would… Continue Reading

A pastor’s attention to form

A pastor’s attention to form

. . . [A pastor] can seek to use those forms that convey the truths of Christianity without trivializing, sentimentalizing, or otherwise falsifying them. He can seek forms that are consonant with Christian worship and affections by understanding those forms. For the sake of space, let’s restrict our examples to form within poetry. As he… Continue Reading

How many songs can one church sing?

How many songs can one church sing?

Have you ever thought about how many songs your church can sing in a year? If you consult the average transdenominational hymnal published today, you might assume that churches can sing 700 or more hymns in a given year. The truth is that most churches–and I’m being very generous in my estimate here–can only sing… Continue Reading

Why we’re publishing a new hymnal

Why we’re publishing a new hymnal

If you didn’t know that we are publishing a new hymnal, well, we are. We’re first creating an online resource of free, downloadable hymns, but we’re working toward (and very close to completing!) a print hymnal as well. Yesterday, Tim Challies blogged about “What We Lost When We Lost Our Hymnals.” Of course, just with… Continue Reading

Reasons to be a Cessationist

Reasons to be a Cessationist

Jordan Standridge gives three good reasons to be a cessationist and specifically counters the idea that cessationism “puts God in a box.” Biblical history. When we consider who in the Bible could actually do miracles, it reveals a lot. The purpose of the sign gifts. When we actually closely consider why God gave these gives… Continue Reading

How to remain fad-proof

How to remain fad-proof

This is good advice: When you internalize an author whose vision or philosophy is both rich and out of fashion, you gain a certain immunity from the pressures of the contemporary. The modern world, with its fads, propaganda, and advertising, is forever trying to herd us into conformity. Great literature can help us remain fad-proof.… Continue Reading

Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing

Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing

Come, thou Fount of ev’ry blessing, Tune my heart to sing thy grace; Streams of mercy, never ceasing, Call for songs of loudest praise. Teach me some melodious sonnet, Sung by flaming tongues above; Praise the mount! I’m fixed upon it, Mount of God’s unchanging love. Here I raise my Ebenezer; Hither by thy help… Continue Reading

Co-opted

Co-opted

Too many of our churches function as secular entertainment centers with religious morals slapped on top, when they should be functioning as the living, breathing Body of Christ. Too many churches have succumbed to modernity, rejecting the wisdom of past ages, treating worship as a consumer activity, and allowing parishioners to function as unaccountable, atomized members.… Continue Reading