Questionable Hymns

Discussion in 'Worship' started by Marrow Man, Oct 26, 2009.

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  1. Marrow Man

    Marrow Man Drunk with Powder

    We are often having discussions on the Puritan Board concerning the favorite hymns of PBers. But I was interested in the existence of hymns with, let's say, "questionable" theology (some more questionable than others).

    There are at least two aspects I would like to consider. First, if the author of the hymn was notoriously unorthodox, that should render the hymn suspect. For example, Julia Ward Howe, who wrote "Battle Hymn of the Republic," was a Unitarian. I am wonder about suspect authors of other famous hymns. And if the author of the hymn was grossly unorthodox, should we be singing the hymn?

    Second, which hymns simply have bad theology? The most hideous hymn I can think of is "In the Garden," but there are others with bad theology, such as "The Savior Is Waiting." Are there others that can be mentioned?

    Note: this thread is not to debate psalmody v. hymnody. Any posts of this sort will be unceremoniously deleted.
  2. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritan Board Doctor

    "The Free Will Song"
  3. Marrow Man

    Marrow Man Drunk with Powder

    I've never heard of that one, Dennis. That's an actual hymn?

    BTW, we should probably include praise songs in this discussion. What's the famous one by Phillips (no relation), Craig, and Dean (who are all Modalists)?
  4. Pergamum

    Pergamum Ordinary Guy (TM)

    That hymn that lotsa people sing on Easter about, "I know that Jesus lives...because He lives within my heart"(just as in sentimental movies where grandpa still "lives on" in our memories and in our hearts...").
  5. au5t1n

    au5t1n Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    "Above All" might qualify. I was going to say, "The Savior is Waiting," but you already covered that one. :think:

    Are you familiar with the contemporary song that has the lyrics "heaven met earth like a sloppy wet kiss"?
  6. Montanablue

    Montanablue Puritan Board Doctor

    I think "It came upon a midnight clear" has some issues. There are a couple of different versions (and I don't have one in front of me now - so I can't quote any particular lines), but there seems to be a lot about angel wings brushing earth and gold harps and not a lot about Christ.
  7. John Lanier

    John Lanier Puritan Board Junior

    Are you talking about "Friend of God"?

    How about Chris Rice's "Cartoon Song"?
  8. Archlute

    Archlute Puritan Board Senior

    The Free Will Song is not a hymn, if Dennis is referring to the same one I am thinking about. It is a painfully rendered choral piece sung by a group of youth from BJU or some similar place. Please, don't watch it. You were warned in advance.
  9. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritan Board Doctor

    Adam, I was taking the broader sense of a Christian song sung in public worship. This fits that bill, albeit . . . yech!!!
    I know of two "Free Will" songs . . .

    The most common is "I Give You Freedom" (The Whippoorwill Song)

    I set the boundries of the ocean vast,
    Carved out the mountains from the distant past,
    Moulded a man from the miry clay,
    Breathed in him life, but he went astray.

    I own the cattle on a thousand hills,
    I write the music for the whippoorwills,
    Control the planets with their rocks and rills,
    But give you freedom to use your own will.

    And if you want Me to, I’ll make you whole,
    I’ll only do it though’ if you say so.
    I’ll never force you, for I love you so,
    I give you freedom – Is it “yes” or “no”?

    I hold the waters in My mighty hand
    Spread out the heavens with a single span,
    Make all creation tremble at My voice,
    But My own children come to Me by choice.

    Even the oxen knows the master’s stall,
    And sheep will recognize the shepherd’s call
    I could demand your love – I own you twice,
    But only willing love is worth the price!

    My holy word now I give to you,
    As a shining lamp to guide you through,
    My yoke is easy and My burden is light,
    Keep looking up, your Heavenly home’s in sight.

    But, then, there is this one too . . .

    To the maker of this house
    The holder of the key
    I gave You my heart
    But held some back for me
    Someday I would give You
    Everything I am
    But I stole my road to freedom
    I took the key and ran
    With my hands over my ears
    You said You would meet me
    If I’d reach out

    I got a free will
    I’m gonna use it
    I got a free will
    Yes, I do
    I got a free will
    I’m gonna use it
    I got a free will
    Yes, I do

    Thank You for this gift
    It’s still a mystery
    My freedom in Your hands
    Is how it’s meant to be
    It’s only when I give You
    Everything I am
    Bittersweet surrender
    Take me

    (I’m gonna choose it)

    Something ain’t right
    You gotta let it go
    Something ain’t right
    You gotta let it go

    I’m gonna make it right
    I’m letting go
    And it’s up to me
    I got a free will

    (And I’ve got to lose it)

    So I give my free will
    Back to You
    Yes I do
    The Son has set me free
    And I am free indeed
  10. Montanablue

    Montanablue Puritan Board Doctor

    Is the above song a joke? (This is a serious question).
  11. AThornquist

    AThornquist Puritan Board Doctor

    The Free Will Song is more like a praise song. There is a very moving (ugh) rendition of the song by the Pensacola worship group on YouTube.

    I'm not sure which song my Philips, Craig & Dean you are referring to. I love their music. Sure they are Oneness Pentecostals but much of their music is biblical and a joy to listen to. There were a few songs that I didn't care for and deleted from iTunes (I don't remember why), so you may be referring to one of those.

    Oh hey, this is a different song from Dennis'. Never mind, Dennis edited and added this one while I was posting :p

  12. JTB

    JTB Puritan Board Freshman

    I've heard of someone who detests the line from Away in a Manger that speaks about Jesus not crying as a baby because it is an implicit denial of Christ's full humanity.
  13. au5t1n

    au5t1n Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    The song "Your Name" by Phillips, Craig, and Dean would be fine (as far as I remember) if you don't know their theology, but when you read the lyrics bearing in mind what Oneness Pentecostals believe about Jesus-only baptism and Jesus' name being magic, it gives the lyrics new meaning.
  14. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritan Board Doctor

    Listen to the video that AThornquist posted. That is a SERIOUS song sung by earnest and pious people at the funamentalist Pennsacola Christian College.
  15. Archlute

    Archlute Puritan Board Senior

    I do believe that you should have your post count reset to zero, and only be allowed to make thread-relevant posts in the intro section until you have reached your original post count before ever being allowed to embed a video on the PB again...
  16. AThornquist

    AThornquist Puritan Board Doctor

    There is a CD by Michael Poirier called "Healing after the Choice." It's really bad.
  17. au5t1n

    au5t1n Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    What do you guys think of this one:

    It's sad because the melody of this song is really good. :(
  18. DMcFadden

    DMcFadden Puritan Board Doctor

    Here are some . . .

    25. "God is She and He Together"
    31. "Come, Father-Mother, Friend and Guide"
    34. "O Christ-Sophia, Give Us Power"
    35. "Stir Us Out of Our Safe Nest, Mother Eagle"
    36. "Out of the Depths Christ-Sophia Is Calling"
    38. "Our Mother-Father God Is Near"
    45. "Come, Sister-Brother Sprit"
    47. "Father-Mother, Kind and Loving"
    48. "Womb of All Creation Flowing"
    49. "Rise Up, O People, Proclaim Christ-Sophia Has Risen"
    51. "O Christ-Sophia, Rise"
  19. AThornquist

    AThornquist Puritan Board Doctor

    :rofl: If you "Search" for it there are many threads containing the video already. It's not new the PB, meester.
  20. Berean

    Berean Puritan Board Doctor

    Hymns from Hell :eek:
  21. Archlute

    Archlute Puritan Board Senior

    Ban the whole lot of you :D
  22. au5t1n

    au5t1n Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    Surely - SURELY - these aren't real!
  23. BertMulder

    BertMulder Puritan Board Junior

    I hate that line also, as well as the above reason as the dreadfull english:

    'not a crying he makes'...

    makes me cringe everytime I hear it.

    Just as this rendition of the song of simeon is terrible:

    Lord, in thy temple we appear,
    As happy Simeon came,
    And hope to meet our Savior here,
    Oh! make our joys the same!

    With what divine and vast delight
    The good old man was filled,
    When fondly in his withered arms
    He clasped the holy child.

    "Now I can leave this world," he cried,
    "Behold, thy servant dies!
    I've seen thy great salvation, Lord,
    And close my peaceful eyes.

    "This is the light prepared to shine
    Upon the Gentile lands;
    Thine Israel's glory and their hope,
    To break their slavish bands."

    Jesus! the vision of thy face
    Hath overpowering charms!
    Scarce shall I feel death's cold embrace,
    If Christ be in my arms.

    When flesh shall fail, and heart-strings break,
    Sweet will the minutes roll;
    A mortal paleness on my cheek,
    But glory in my soul.

    As if he about collapses dead in the courtyard of the temple...

    In addition, taking a lot of liberty with his actual song as rendered in Scripture...
  24. JTB

    JTB Puritan Board Freshman

    The nice thing about this song is that you can amend the lyrics and still retain consonance with the melody:

    Simply change "and thought of me" to "for God's glory" or "for your glory"
  25. Christusregnat

    Christusregnat Puritan Board Professor

    Touch Not, Taste Not, Handle Not a beloved temperance "hymn".
  26. au5t1n

    au5t1n Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    If I'm not mistaken, that line from "Away in a Manger" is referring to the fact that, in the song, baby Jesus is asleep. Remember, at that point in the song, we've long since heard "The little Lord Jesus, asleep on the hay." So it says nothing about him never crying...Right?
  27. Hamalas

    Hamalas whippersnapper

    On of my favorite hymns was always "It is Well with my Soul" But something I just recently learned is that the author, Horatio Spafford, had some serious theological issues! I assume that most of you are familiar with the basic story of his life (i.e. business burns down in Chicago, children die at sea, wife dies in a train wreck, etc...) but after all that he moved to Israel with his daughter and set up some kind of end-times cult. Now I have never noticed anything theologically suspect within that song, but how should the authors weird theology affect our use of an otherwise good song?
  28. au5t1n

    au5t1n Puritan Board Post-Graduate

    Last edited: Oct 26, 2009
  29. JTB

    JTB Puritan Board Freshman

    Nope, he's awake.

    The cattle a lowing,
    The baby awakes,
    But little lord Jesus,
    No crying he makes.
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