Tag Archives: Watts

Which advent is in view in “Joy to the World”?

Which advent is in view in “Joy to the World”?

We are in the midst of a wonderful time in the year when we can reflect upon the advent of our Lord and the redemption that comes through faith in him. One of the most enjoyable ways to do this is through the singing of classic Advent and Christmas hymns. Songs like “Come, Thou Long Expected… Continue Reading

Implications from Isaac Watts’s Trinitarian Controversy

Implications from Isaac Watts’s Trinitarian Controversy

Yesterday at the national meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society, I presented a paper evaluating Isaac Watts’s Trinitarian views. I hope to get the paper published soon, but in the meantime, here are several of the very relevant implications I drew related to the boundary of Christian fellowship, the importance of church tradition and creeds,… Continue Reading

There hasn’t always been contemporary worship music

There hasn’t always been contemporary worship music

I’ve heard it said many times, often by people I love and respect: “Christians have always used contemporary music in their worship.” Or, it might go something like this: “Using pop music today is no different than what Luther or Watts did in their day.” What’s the point behind statements like these? Their purpose is… Continue Reading

Isaac Watts on the perpetuity of a sabbath

Isaac Watts on the perpetuity of a sabbath

Several of the controversies which have risen, with regard to the sabbath, whether jewish or christian, and the holiness of it, though they are not of the highest importance among the doctrines and duties of christianity, yet neither are they mean and trifling; for as we ought not to release the souls and consciences of… Continue Reading

Reformation Hymns

This entry is part 6 of 14 in the series The Hymnody of the Christian Church You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

This entry is part 6 of 14 in the series”The Hymnody of the Christian Church”You can read more posts from the series by using the Table of Contents in the right sidebar.When Martin Luther (1483—1546) sparked a Reformation of the Church by nailing his Ninety-Five Theses to the Church door at Wittenberg in 1517, he… Continue Reading

The Watts Controversy

On the wall in my study I have three portraits. All three are portraits of theologians who were also heavily involved with music. They are Martin Luther, J.S. Bach, and Isaac Watts. All three men fought their battles in defense of high standards for worship music. All three had their share of controversy. And all… Continue Reading

A potential danger in writing hymns in an age of mass media

There seem to be a lot of hymns being written today, and a lot of them are really pretty good. One of the reasons for that seems to be that pastors are beginning again to write hymn texts instead of just musicians or publishers. There is one relevant potential pitfall into which hymn writers today could easily… Continue Reading