Studying the inspired psalms can certainly teach us much about hymn texts, but can they also teach us about what makes a good hymn tune? Terry Johnson believes so:
Many are quick to point out that God has not given us a book of tunes. No, but He has given us a book of lyrics (the Psalms) and their form will do much to determine the kinds of tunes that will be used. Put simply, the tunes will be suited to the words. They will be sophisticated enough to carry substantial content over several lines and stanzas. They will use minimal repetition. They will be appropriate to the emotional mood of the Psalm or Bible-based Christian hymn. Sing the Bible.1
What else can we learn from the psalms about what makes a good hymn tune?
- Terry L. Johnson, Reformed Worship: Worship That is According to Scripture (Greenville: Reformed Academic Press, 2000), 37-38. [↩]