Tag Archives: hymns

Third Hymn of Christmas: Love Came Down at Christmas

Third Hymn of Christmas: Love Came Down at Christmas

This entry is part 3 of 12 in the series 12 Hymns of Christmas You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Christina Rosetti has written some of the most beautiful Christmas carols, and “Love Came Down at Christmas” is no exception. Penned in 1855, this hymn centers on the theme of love–Christ is love personified, and our response to his coming should be love toward him and others. Love came down at Christmas, love all lovely,… Continue Reading

Second Hymn of Christmas: Of the Father’s Love Begotten

Second Hymn of Christmas: Of the Father’s Love Begotten

This entry is part 2 of 12 in the series 12 Hymns of Christmas You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Almost as ancient as “Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence,” this hymn is probably more well-known. “Of the Father’s Love Begotten” was written in the fourth century by Marcus Aurelius Prudentius, a poet from northern Spain, and translated into English in 1851 by John Mason Neale as part of the Oxford Movement. This hymn is… Continue Reading

Twelve Hymns of Christmas

Twelve Hymns of Christmas

Tomorrow begins the Twelve Days of Christmas, and so in honor of this festive season, I will be highlighting one Christmas hymn each of the twelve days. I’ll focus on some lesser-known hymns, complete with a bit of background, the full text, a link to a free download, and a video. Merry Christmas! Continue Reading

Advent Hymns

Advent Hymns

Advent is upon us! This is a wonderful time of year to both remember the prophecies regarding Christ’s first coming and anticipate his coming again. If all of the prophecies concerning his first coming were fulfilled with complete literalness, we can have confidence that those prophecies yet to be fulfilled will also come to pass… Continue Reading

Repentance Hymns

Repentance Hymns

This weekend I am speaking the the National Center for Family Integrated Churches Conference in Asheville, NC. The theme of the conference is “Repentance: The Reformation Continues.” I have been asked to speak on the topic, “Repentance Through Singing in Corporate Worship.” I am going to preach from Psalm 130, one of the seven “Penitential… Continue Reading

Reformation Hymns

Reformation Hymns

Reformation Sunday is coming up on October 29, and this year is particularly special since we are celebrating the 500 year anniversary of the beginning of the Reformation. In our church, each year on Reformation Sunday we sing Reformation hymns, that is, hymns that in some way connect to the Reformers and the movement they… 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

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

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

Wanted: Hymn Proofreaders

Wanted: Hymn Proofreaders

I am pleased to announce that we have now published 230 free, downloadable hymns on our online hymn collection, which means that we are within just a few months from being ready to publish our print hymnal! If you are curious, here is the final list of hymnal we intend to include in the print hymnal.… Continue Reading

Poetic analysis of hymns

Poetic analysis of hymns

Tim Miller has an interesting post over at the Detroit Seminary blog analyzing the text of Wesley’s “And Can it Be.” There is some good food for thought there, and I certainly appreciate the emphasis on making sure our hymns are theologically accurate, but I do think that we often miss the fact that hymns… Continue Reading

New hymns added to our free, downloadable collection

New hymns added to our free, downloadable collection

*Updated (2/26/17 6:11pm): I’ve added the titles below of the hymns we just added yesterday for those curious. We have just added more new hymns to our free, downloadable resource! Head on over to ClassicHymns.org to view them. We are also very close to completing the 250 hymns we plan to include in our print… Continue Reading

Degree or Decree?

Degree or Decree?

Chuck Bumgardner has posted an interesting investigation into whether “decree” or “degree” is the correct word in “Thou Didst Leave thy Throne” (not all hymnals agree). You should check it out: Proclaiming Thy Royal…. | Jubilate Deo Continue Reading

The profound simplicity of “Away in a Manger”

The profound simplicity of “Away in a Manger”

Christmas: the one time of the year that most churches actually sing good hymns! Some of our traditional Christmas hymns really are quite profound, the queen of them all being “Hark! the Herald Angels Sing.” Yet some Christmas hymns are far from perfect. Others have addressed the problems with some of these hymns. One hymn… Continue Reading

Was Jesus born in the bleak midwinter?

Was Jesus born in the bleak midwinter?

Understood as poet Christina Rosetti meant it, the answer to the question posed in the title of this post is, Yes. English poet Christina Rosetti penned the poem, originally titled “A Christmas Carol,” sometime before 1871 at the request of William James Stillman, editor of Scribner’s Monthly, where the poem was first published in January 1872. The… Continue Reading