What’s the Best Worship Song You’ve Learned Recently?

Just when I start thinking all the best worship songs have already been written (which I don’t really believe), I hear a new song that affects me profoundly.

A friend recently sent me an email letting me know that he just taught his church My Soul Finds Rest (Ps 62) by Aaron Keyes and Stuart Townend. I have four categories for congregational worship songs. Must Use, Could Use, Personally Use, and Don’t Use. This is one that I’d put in my Must Use file. There are a number of reasons.

  • It’s based on the Word of God (always a plus)
  • The melody is memorable.
  • The melody is creative.
  • The harmonic progression is fresh.
  • The meter is unique. (verse in 5/4, chorus in 3/4)
  • The lyrics are ones that can really help us teach and admonish one another (Col. 3:16).

Though riches come and riches go,
Don’t set your heart upon them;
The fields of hope in which I sow
Are harvested in heaven.

  • The chorus is uplifting and contains objective truth, not just a subjective response

O praise Him, hallelujah,
My Delight and my reward;
Everlasting, never failing,
My Redeemer, my God.

  • It’s a Psalm seen through the lens of the gospel

Though life is but a fleeting breath,
A sigh too brief to measure,
My King has crushed the curse of death
And I am His forever.

You may not agree with me on all the points, but that’s okay. Here is Aaron Keyes singing it live.

Aaron tells the background of the song here.
You can read the lyrics and purchase the sheet music here.
The chart is available from Aaron’s site, included in the charts for his “Not Guilty Anymore” CD.
You can download Stuart Townend singing it on his CD There is a Hope here.

So what’s the best song you’ve taught (or learned) recently? Please include the name, author, source, and specific reasons why you think it’s so good. Just so you know, I may not post duplicate recommendations or comments that don’t give clear reasons for why a song qualifies.

, , ,

46 Responses to What’s the Best Worship Song You’ve Learned Recently?

  1. Brent Minter October 14, 2008 at 12:59 PM #

    My vote goes for “Stronger” by Ben Fielding and Reuben Morgan. It is on the newest Hillsong record “This is Our God.”

    The song is grounded in the atonement and ressurection. The chorus allows the church to sing an anthem declaring God is stronger…

    “You are stronger, You are Stroger
    Sin is broken you have saved me
    It is written Chris is risen
    Jesus you are Lord of all.”

  2. chris kiagiri October 14, 2008 at 3:11 PM #

    Bob,

    Do you have the list of songs in your Must Use file published somewhere on this blog? :)

    - Chris

  3. Matt October 14, 2008 at 3:36 PM #

    Along with the previous comment for “Stronger”, Hillsong’s title track “This Is Our God” by Reuben Morgan wonderfully and dynamically moves from quiet and stilled reverence, to a congregational anthem declaring the victory of the Cross and the deity of Christ:

    “I will fall at Your feet
    I will fall at Your feet
    And I will worship You here

    Freely You gave it all for us
    Surrendered Your life upon that cross
    Great is the love poured out for all
    This is our God
    Lifted on high from death to life
    Forever our God is glorified
    Servant and King, rescued the world
    This is our God”

  4. Paul Hayes October 14, 2008 at 3:47 PM #

    Bob,
    I love “Jesus, Priceless Treasure” by David Ward because:
    -a great, biblical lyric
    -new chorus added
    -singable tune for congregations
    -I couldn’t write a good tune to this lyric!

    source-Reformed Praise
    Thanks!

  5. Shawn Gierling October 14, 2008 at 4:17 PM #

    Ancient Words by Lynn DeShazo

    Great lyric, testifying to the power of the Word and God’s sovereignty in protecting through the ages for our gain and His glory.

    Great hook on the Chorus, memorable.

  6. Aaron Campbell October 14, 2008 at 4:18 PM #

    We are learning “At the Cross” by Daniel Renstrom this week. It is on his EP, Adore and Tremble. http://www.danielrenstrom.com.

    It evokes biblical language not often found in other songs
    Righteous now is how He looks at me
    Aroma of Christ to God from me
    Bought with the precious blood.
    It conveys the corporate (for the church) and individual effect(for me) of Jesus’ work on the cross
    vs. 1- We are singing…We are Christ’s possession…Given us pardon and forgiveness;
    vs 2 Grace made known to me…Righteous now is how He looks at me

    At the cross wrath was taken away
    Christ was in our place
    Oh what marvelous grace
    At the cross Justice was supplied
    By the blood of Christ
    Forever we will praise

    AC

  7. Bob Kauflin October 14, 2008 at 4:34 PM #

    Do you have the list of songs in your Must Use file published somewhere on this blog?

    It’s a file I keep in my mind…obviously what I think I “must use” might vary from what someone else might put in that category. But I try to post blogs on the songs I think are really strong.

  8. Bob Kauflin October 14, 2008 at 4:36 PM #

    Aaron,

    I agree. At the Cross by Daniel Renstrom is a great song. Solid theology in a very accessible musical setting.

  9. Steve Moore October 14, 2008 at 5:23 PM #

    What a helpful list.

    Though we’ve sung this for a little while, I would add The Lord Will Provide by John Newton, updated tune by Matthew Smith. Very fitting melody, lyrics loaded with biblical imagery, and that truth is then applied to “us” – as a church. Helps us preach trust in the Lord to one another.

    Here’s part of verse 2:

    The birds, without barn or storehouse, are fed;
    From them let us learn to trust for our bread.
    His saints, what is fitting, shall ne’er be denied
    So long as it’s written, “The Lord will provide.”

    Found on Matthew Smith’s All I Owe CD, also available for Amazon MP3 download.

  10. Troy October 14, 2008 at 5:31 PM #

    I have two I think fit:

    Mighty To Save – by Laura Story (we like a version Hillsong recorded)

    – It’s based on the Word of God
    – The melody is memorable
    – Helps us teach and admonish one another

    All Over The World – Matt Redman, Martin Smith (Passion recording)

    – same reasons

  11. Troy October 14, 2008 at 5:33 PM #

    Oh, and something you didn’t mention, which always adds extra points for me. They have more than one verse!

  12. Jimmy Buehler October 14, 2008 at 5:49 PM #

    I just learned “Guide Me O Thou Great Jehovah.”
    It is such a powerful song of desperation and dependence.
    It is a great song to show our need for God, His grace, His Gospel.

    Guide me, O Thou great Jehovah,
    Pilgrim through this barren land.
    I am weak, but Thou art mighty;
    Hold me with Thy powerful hand.
    Bread of heaven,
    Feed me now and evermore;
    Bread of heaven,
    Feed me now and evermore.

    This verse struck me so powerfully the other day.

  13. Nick October 14, 2008 at 6:00 PM #

    I lead worship for the INSIGHT program at Bethleham Baptist Church (Minneapolis, MN). Just this afternoon I taught them the song “Father, Long Before Creation” (http://www.igracemusic.com/hymnbook/hymns/f02.html) with the lyrics being attributed to a Chinese Hymn. The words were translated into English by Francis P. Jones, and Jonathan Barnes put modern music to it.
    It is a wonderful song, in my mind, for a couple of reasons. First, when I first read the lyrics I pictured it to be a slow, solemn song. But when I heard the music I found it to be very upbeat and exciting. Second, this song contains very theologically rich words. It contains truths that are essential to our Christian walk.

    Here it is:

    1. Father, long before creation
    Thou hadst chosen us in love,
    And that love so deep, so moving,
    Draws us close to Christ above.
    Still it keeps us, still it keeps us.
    Firmly fixed in Christ alone.

    2. Though the world may change its fashion,
    Yet our God is e’er the same;
    His compassion and His covenant
    Through all ages will remain.
    God’s own children, God’s own children
    Must forever praise His name.

    3. God’s compassion is my story,
    Is my boasting all the day;
    Mercy free and never failing
    Moves my will, directs my way.
    God so loved us, God so loved us
    That His only Son He gave.

    4. Loving Father now before Thee
    We will ever praise Thy love,
    And our songs will sound unceasing
    ‘Til we reach our home above,
    Giving glory, giving glory
    To our God and to the Lamb;
    Giving glory, giving glory
    To our God and to the Lamb.

  14. Steven Tran October 14, 2008 at 8:17 PM #

    All the way from Australia we have a great group of songwriters (based mostly in Sydney, though I’m from Brisbane) for the group EMU Music. Of the many songs I’ve heard from them my favourite remains ‘Nothing Can I Boast In’ by Bryson Smith (Pastor of Dubbo Presbyterian – http://www.dpc.org.au) and Philip Percival. It’s mix of simple melody and rich theology has moved me many times – and in a time in which the ‘prosperity gospel’ seems to prevalent, the final verse speaks loudly to our generation:

    1. At God’s perfect timing,Christ died for fallen man
    He wore a crown of thorns,nails driven through His hands.
    Christ willingly endured it, to death He chose to go.
    He broke His body for us, shed blood to make us whole.

    2. Nothing can I boast in, my life is scarred with sin;
    My works are filthy rags, no merit can I bring.
    Yet mercy filled Christ’s heart, love took Him to the tree;
    It’s grace alone which saves me – Christ’s blood that sets me free.

    3. So if I am to boast I’ll speak of my disgrace,
    For my weak self displays the power of God’s grace
    Christ’s Spirit works within me, in weakness He is strong
    So I look to my Saviour to safely bring me home.

    Can I also put up a vote for ‘And Can It Be’, the old hymn by Charles Wesley? We sing this each year, without fail, at a Men’s Convention in Brisbane and, without fail, it always shakes the foundations of the tin shed we meet in – hundreds of men singing at the top of their lungs,

    No condemnation now I dread,
    Jesus, and all in him, is mine!
    Alive in him, my living Head,
    and clothed in righteousness divine
    Bold I approach the eternal throne,
    and claim the crown, through Christ my own!
    Amazing love! How can it be,
    that Thou my God shouldst die for me?

    A masculine song which men in our churches are never afraid to sing loudly!

  15. Nicki O'Donovan October 14, 2008 at 11:22 PM #

    We’ve just learned the song “Beautiful Redeemer” co-written by Jeff Bourque and James Tealy found on the CD ‘Waves of Grace’ by Grace Community Church. I first heard the song on Rhapsody. http://www.gccnashville.org/resources/music.aspx

    The power of this song is in it’s simplicity. The words are biblical, the melody is beautiful, the rhythm is catchy and the arrangement is very tastefully done.

    We learned this song on Sunday and we had tears running down some faces as people meditated on the glorious truths written in this song.

  16. Dave October 14, 2008 at 11:49 PM #

    Try anything from Lecrae from Reach Records…especially from his new album “Rebel”. Theologically…strong. Doctrinally…sound. Great music to go along with these. Broaden your horizons and forget that it is Hip-Hop(or be grateful that it is), and just meditate on the words.

  17. Kyle October 14, 2008 at 11:58 PM #

    Steven – I’m interested in why you label “And Can It Be” a “masculine” song. I suspect it has to do with the context in which you often sing it (a men’s conference), since there seem to be no exclusively masculine references in its lyric.

    Troy, for what it’s worth, you got it backwards on “Mighty to Save.” The song was written by Reuben Morgan and Ben Fielding, and was subsequently recorded by Laura Story. And incidently, in the the reverse of your opinon – I prefer Laura’s rendition. :- )

    And speaking of Laura Story (How’s that for a segue back to the topic?), her newest CD “God Who Saves” is remarkable in its musical creativity, doctrinal clarity, and devotional strength. I want to point everyone to one song in particular, “There Is Nothing,” which is a beautiful and honest reflection of a sinner entering the presence of a holy God. Very fitting for any corporate worship meeting. Here’s streaming audio: http://www.imeem.com/jukeboxmusic15/music/JDfE4e_7/laura_story_there_is_nothing/

    Another song on the CD called “Make Something Beautiful” is a prayer for God to use every circumstance in life to mold us into the image of Christ. The second verse jumped out at me this week:

    When I’m tired of pretending
    and I can’t recall my lines
    Do I say I’m barely breathing
    or just say I’m doin’ fine?
    I admit there is a yearning
    for the hurting to subside
    But not at the risk of missing
    what you’re doing in my life

  18. Bob Kauflin October 15, 2008 at 7:13 AM #

    All,

    Thanks for the feedback. Let’s keep this thread focused on songs that can be sung congregationally.

  19. Owen October 15, 2008 at 7:53 AM #

    Great discussion everyone.

    I’ve recently started using a song called ‘Overcome’ by Jon Egan from New Life Church. It’s a beautifully crafted song that is based around Revelation 12 vs 11 “they will overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony…”.

    What I appreciate so much about it, is that as Bob talked about in his talk at the recent Desiring God conference, the music serves the words in a way that makes the whole song become an anthem of triumph and victory.

    I think what I love most about the song is that it has come out of a church that has experienced great trial and heart-ache over the past 12 months, with shootings happening in their church and having to let go of their pastor due to him falling into sin. It is a great declaration of faith in the midst of trials and has a powerful, overwhelming build up in the bridge which never fails to bring tears to my eyes.

    With all that said, it is also very accessible and has a singable melody.

  20. David October 15, 2008 at 9:52 AM #

    To shamelessly self-promote an old hymn I rewrote a melody for (and some lyrical tweaking), take a look at “Jesus, True and Living Bread.” The focus is mostly on Johannine Christology, but it draws some from other parts of Scripture as well.

    chart:http://resproj.com/hymnal/jesustrue_ls.pdf
    demo: http://resproj.com/hymnal/jesustrue_d.mp3

  21. David Eaton October 15, 2008 at 10:22 AM #

    Two Steve Fee songs that we’re really enjoying right now are (lyric excerpts included):

    Burn for You,

    Great missions song…

    “There’s a passion in my heart
    For the world to see
    Revival fires burn
    A great awakening
    And there’s a raging fire inside
    That’s so high
    And it’s causing me to burn
    It’s causing me to burn
    It’s causing me to burn
    For you,

    I’ll go anywhere
    I’ll do anything
    At any cost for you
    My King”

    also, Beautiful the Blood…

    “never knew death could be so sweet
    never knew surrender could feel so free…

    And now I sing freedom for all my days
    It’s only by the power of the cross I’m raised
    The King of Glory rescued me

    How beautiful the blood flow
    How merciful the love shown
    The King of glory poured out
    Victorious are we now”

  22. Bob Kauflin October 15, 2008 at 10:42 AM #

    Okay, I should have said this earlier, but let’s only recommend songs that other people have written…

  23. Bethany October 15, 2008 at 10:59 AM #

    I think that “Mighty to Save” is the best new congregational song we’ve added this year (musically, I like the Laura Story version as well) for reasons others have mentioned. I appreciate that it’s so singable AND its theme of Jesus’ victory over death.

    Another recommendation is “Today is the Day” by Lincoln Brewster and Paul Baloche (recorded on Lincoln Brewster’s album by the same name). It is really celebratory – and the chorus lyrics are solid:

    “Today is the day You have made
    I will rejoice and be glad in it
    I won’t worry about tomorrow
    I’m trusting in what You say
    Today is the day”

    One more – “Spring of Life” – Kristian Stanfill (from his Hello EP). The lyrics talk about how life and this world are empty apart from Christ. The chorus is:

    “Jesus, You’re the well that won’t run dry
    Jesus, You’re the drink that satisfies
    Living Water, Spring of Life
    Jesus, You’re the well that won’t run dry”

  24. Ted Slater October 15, 2008 at 11:54 AM #

    My current favorite worship song is by Enfield, the worship band from Grace Community Church (John MacArthur is the senior pastor).

    I remember several years ago hearing a speaker at a Sovereign Grace worship conference say that we needed more songs about heaven. Enfield’s entire album, “O For That Day,” meditates on our heavenly destiny. The song with which I most resonate on the album is “Arrived.” Here are the lyrics:

    Watching and waiting our whole life through
    For the moment when we arrive in glory
    We’ll be standing before His emerald throne
    O what a day it will be

    All tears are gone and suffering ceased
    Perfect new life with no earthly strife
    For we’ve finished the race, run to His embrace
    O what a day that will be

    (chorus)
    When we’ve arrived, stunned and surprised
    All things resolved in the blink of an eye
    No more distractions, no sin left to fight
    The first glimpse of Jesus and faith becomes sight

    Feel the ground shake hear thunder roll
    See blinding light and seraphim fly
    All amazed we will fall yet the Father will call,
    “Stand, I have made you my own”

    A choir with angels, martyrs and saints
    Singing his praise with no end to the days
    Shouting “Holy, holy, holy” to almighty God
    O what a song that will be

    (chorus)
    When we’ve arrived, stunned and surprised
    All things resolved in the blink of an eye
    No more distractions, no sin left to fight
    The first glimpse of Jesus and faith becomes sight

    You can listen to portions of the songs here: http://www.resolved.org/music.aspx

  25. Jamie Brown October 15, 2008 at 12:03 PM #

    We’ve been introducing songs from your Psalms CD over the last several months, since they’re fantastic songs both musically and lyrically, and since our sermon series is on the life of David. Two that stand out are:

    (1) “Praise the Lord.” I’m always looking for upbeat, celebrative songs that don’t sacrifice lyrical depth and truth. This is a great setting of Psalm 150, a nice alternative to the now-worn-out Matt Redman song “Let Everything…”, easy for the congregation to learn (but not boring), and full of great truth to grab onto. I love the line: “Praise the Lord with instruments / Praise Him for His excellence / Look at what He’s done for us / Bore our sins upon the cross.” Fresh lyrics, a new way to say something, and said in the light of the Gospel.

    (2) “The Lord Is.” I have been surprised by the number of members of the congregation who have asked me where they can find this song. This past weekend, a woman told me how God spoke to her very clearly during this song, reminding her that he alone can satisfy. This morning, another woman told me how her kids were singing this song in the car. This song effectively takes a very familiar Psalm (23), and expresses the truth in that Psalm in a new way. “You gave Your own life for my ransom / So I could rejoice at Your side / You have shown Your faithfulness again and again / There’s nothing good that You will not provide.” Great song. Even though there are a lot of “I’s” and “my’s” – no one could walk away from this song focused on themselves.

    A little aside — Bob, when you led this song at the opening night of the Worship God ’08 conference, when we came to the line “You have shown your faithfulness again and again…” you spoke over that line “again and again and again…” A simple exhortation, but very powerful and helpful. Thank you.

    Another great song from Stuart Townend’s “There is a Hope” CD is “Loved Before the Dawn of Time.” A bit more difficult musically than most songs, which is nice. The melody and chord progressions are different from most Townend stuff. The last verse says: “Stars will fade and mountains fall / Christ will shine forever, love’s unfading splendor / Earth and heaven will bow in awe / Joining in salvation’s song.”

  26. Cindy Blevins October 15, 2008 at 12:28 PM #

    Great suggestions, thanks to everyone. There are some songs out there both old and new that don’t really say that much and it is always good to hear new ideas for songs that have a message :) I am no expert but I suspect Satan would love the church to sing more meaningless songs…..

  27. Cindy Blevins October 15, 2008 at 12:31 PM #

    Sorry forgot my favorite currently: Our Great God Fernando Ortega

  28. dave bish October 16, 2008 at 5:20 PM #

    Got to be Matt Giles’ song The Grace of My God. The tune is catchy and driving which fits with the declaration/proclamation of the lyrics. And the key to the lyrics is that they’re all about God’s grace. And it’s inspired by Valley of Vision which is great!

    1. The grace of my God, an unbreakable chain,
    for those He redeems, He in grace will sustain.
    I will treasure the cross and rejoice in the Prize,
    This unspeakable Gift! This the gospel of Christ!

    2. Without Him my eyes would be downcast in guilt,
    And in trembling shame would my lips have been sealed.
    Yet my mouth fills with praise, when I call on His name
    And my eyes may delight in the wonders of Christ!

    Yes, wave upon wave of grace reaches me,
    He deals with my sin and He washes me clean.
    And each accusation is drowned by His blood,
    For Jesus has paid with immeasurable love!

    3. Without Him is hell, where His wrath will consume,
    In perpetual fire; an eternity doomed.
    Yet in Him is all love, and my soul is at rest,
    For hell’s gates have been barred through His glorious death!

    4. Without Him the darkness is all I can see,
    And the terror of sin would abound within me.
    Yet a boundless horizon of glory is mine,
    When Christ in the depths of my heart is all light!

    5. By grace my affection is drawn to the Lord,
    And by grace I’m renewed by the power of His word.
    It is grace that will strengthen my will and resolve
    To live for my Christ ’til I kneel at His throne!

    http://thebluefish.org/2008/06/grace-of-my-god-matt-giles.html

  29. Leanne October 16, 2008 at 9:55 PM #

    I have loved Lead Me to the Rock by Lynn DeShazo for several years. The tune is a beautiful setting for the words and the chorus lifts your heart up to the Rock who is higher.

    “When my heart is overwhelmed, hear my cry,
    give heed to my prayer,
    And my eyes are dim with tears,
    O Father, make them clear.
    From the ends of all the earth,
    When my heart is fainting,
    Let me know that you have heard,
    Lead me into safety.
    Lead me to the Rock, the Rock that’s higher,
    Lead me to the Rock that is higer than I.

    I’d also vote for the old hymn, Jesus Lives, and So Shall I, by Gellert and Cruger. You need to sing it LOUD!

    Jesus lives, and so shall I.
    Death! thy sting is gone forever.
    He who deigned for me to die,
    Lives, the bands of death to sever.
    He shall raise me with the just.
    Jesus is my Hope and Trust.

  30. Cole Brown October 17, 2008 at 3:31 PM #

    You’ll have to forgive the shameless self-promotion but our church has recently added an original song that has quickly become one of our favorites and we’re excited to share it with others. The song is called “God of Wrath,” it’s written by Jelani Greenidge, Cole Brown, and ReShawn Brown. It’s from the album “Red Sea Presents In Response Vol 1.” (available to listen to at cdbaby.com/cd/inresponse)

    We love it because it fills a void that we previously had a hard time filling. As we were preaching through the book of Judges we were having great difficulty finding songs that spoke of our idolatry and of God’s wrath toward idolaters. So we wrote this original song about our idolatry, God’s wrath toward idolaters, and God’s choice to pour this wrath out in his Son instead of upon us. Also, we wrote it with an R&B feel which was good for us because there’s not a ton of stuff to choose from with that vibe. The lyrics are below.

    Verse 1:
    We have all gone astray
    We have all lost our way
    We have all given chase
    After gods that don’t save
    We have all bowed ourselves
    At the altar of self
    We have all served our pride
    At the cost of what’s right

    Chorus
    God of Wrath
    God of Justice
    We have earned
    Your wrath and judgment
    But you poured it out on your Son
    Yes, you poured it out on your Son

    Verse 2
    We have all sung the songs
    We have all prayed the prayers
    We have all said the words
    When our heart wasn’t there
    We have all lived our lives
    As adulterous wives
    We have all shed the blood
    Of the ones we should love

    Chorus 2x

    Bridge
    We have filled your cup
    Til it overflowed
    But before we could sip of it
    Your Son drank it whole

  31. Cole Brown October 17, 2008 at 3:38 PM #

    Woops! Bob, I just saw your note to only include songs others have written. My apologies.

  32. Bob Kauflin October 17, 2008 at 4:35 PM #

    Cole,

    I included your song for two reasons. One, other people contributed to writing it. Two, you’re right that we don’t have many songs on this topic.

  33. Rick October 17, 2008 at 7:43 PM #

    I just found a song by Todd Fields a few weeks ago that I really like entitled “Let Me Sing.” It talks about how we can glorify God even greater than the rest of creation because of God’s redemptive work in our lives.

    You can see a youtube video of it here.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=44r5cs9aF34

    Another new favorite is “God Of this City” which speaks to God’s work of kingdom building in our communities. He has greater things planned for our communities because “there is no one like our God.”

    Chris Tomlin has a version of it here.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VmC44K0xQLE

    And BlueTree has another version of it with an alternate second verse that connects God’s re-creative acts to His creative power.

  34. David Ward October 18, 2008 at 5:08 PM #

    Bob,

    Sorry to chime in on this thread so late, but the best worship song I’ve introduced to our church in the past six months or so is the modern tune that Indelible Grace wrote (Laura Taylor) for John Newton’s hymn “Let Us Love and Sing and Wonder”. The recording is on the album “For All the Saints” by Indelible Grace and the song detail page is at http://www.igracemusic.com/hymnbook/hymns/l03.html. The reason this is such a great song is that it starts with the admonition to sing praise to our Savior and then fills in through the 5 verses a plethora of reasons that make our song truly filled with wonder. It’s also got a very catch and singable melody that our people took to right away. John Newton has an amazing way of making his songs so Christ and gospel-centered and using such vivid imagery. Here are my two favorite parts of the lyrics:

    Let us love and sing and wonder,
    Let us praise the Savior’s name!
    He has hushed the law’s loud thunder,
    He has quenched Mount Sinai’s flame:
    He has washed us with His blood,

    He has brought us nigh to God.

    Let us wonder, grace and justice
    Join, and point to mercy’s store;
    When through grace in Christ our trust is,
    Justice smiles, and asks no more:
    He Who washed us with His blood,

    Has secured our way to God.

  35. Marvin Hadenfeldt October 20, 2008 at 4:36 PM #

    Just out of curiosity, any examples from your Don’t Use file, Bob?

  36. Sean Carter October 23, 2008 at 12:12 AM #

    The best two recent ones i have led are “That i might sing” by Ryan Flanigan written from Isaiah the lyrics are.

    “That I Might Sing (Woe Is Me)”
    (c) 2006 Ryan Flanigan

    (verse 1)
    Woe is me for I am
    Lost and full of sin
    Take the burning coal and
    Touch my unclean lips

    (pre-chorus)
    That I might see
    That I might say, “Send me”
    That I might sing

    (chorus)
    Holy, holy God of all
    The earth is filled with glory
    Glory, worship the Son
    Jesus, Savior took my sin
    That I might live forever
    Ever worshiping God

    (verse 2)
    Sacrifices please You
    Only if they’re right
    Place upon my lips, Lord
    Praise you won’t despise

    The second one is “Sweetest Mystery” by eddie kirkland i think this song really gives the worshiper a sense of his dislocation from God as a sinner, and relocation and reconciliation as one who has been saved by the work of the cross.

    Why do You love me
    Why do You care
    Greatly You’ve blessed me
    And greatly I’ve erred
    In all of my failings
    You’ve stood in my place
    With patience unending
    And tireless grace

    Kindness I did not deserve
    Mercy I could never earn
    Your blood and blessing cover me
    Your love the sweetest mystery

    How did You suffer
    How did You cry
    Placing Him under
    My burden of pride
    Afflicted and pierced
    You delivered to death
    The Holy Beloved
    Your Life and Your Breath

    Kindness I did not deserve
    Mercy I could never earn
    Your blood and blessing cover me
    Your love the sweetest mystery

    Nothing can separate me from
    Your love, Your love, Your love
    Nothing can separate me from
    Your love, Your love, Your love.

  37. Aundrea Waltz October 23, 2008 at 4:05 PM #

    I am enjoying meditating on a hymn penned by Isaac Watts based on Psalm 23, entitled “Christ My Shepherd.”

    My Shepherd will supply my need;
    Jehovah is his name,
    In pastures fresh he makes me feed,
    Beside the living stream.

    He brings my wandering spirit back,
    When I forsake his ways;
    And leads me. For his mercy’s sake,
    In paths of truth and grace.

    When I walk through the shades of death,
    Thy presence is my stay;
    A Word of thy supporting breath
    Drives all my fears away.

    Thy hand, in sight of all my foes,
    Does still my table spread;
    My cup with blessings overflows;
    Thy oil anoints my head.

    The sure provisions of my God
    Attend me all my days.
    O may thy house be my abode,
    And all my work be praise!

    It makes me yearn to be with my Savior…where all my work will be praise!

  38. Joel Harris October 24, 2008 at 2:52 PM #

    Bob,
    Thanks for this post, it has been really helpful to hear what other people have been finding. My drummer brought Psalm 62 to my attention a couple of months ago, and it has been a very effective song at our church.

    I am also excited about introducing Glorious and Mighty from the Psalms album. I think that is a really excellent song.

    I’ve noticed that several people have mentioned Hillsongs, and I wanted to ask a question, only answer if you want to… I know that Sovereign Grace hasn’t historically used many Hillsongs songs (other than perhaps Shout to the Lord), and our church hasn’t either, for the most part. But in the past couple of years it seems like they have begun to write songs that are more cross-centered, or theologically precise. What do you think? Are there any recent songs of theirs that you would consider, if not for Covenant Life Church, at least for something like New Attitude?

    Brooke Fraser (who I know you like as a solo artist) has written a couple of good ones, like Lord of Lords, Hosanna, and The Desert Song. Someone else mentioned the song Stronger. Any thoughts on any of these, if you’ve listened to them, or considered any of them? Do you usually steer away from songs that are too “experiential” or “prophetic” in tone (such as Hosanna, “I see a near revival stirring as we pray and seek”)?

    Finally, have you listened to the Revelation Song? I know this is a lot to ask, but I’ve love to get your feedback on anything you can give off the top of your head!

    Thanks!

    Joel

  39. Ashley October 26, 2008 at 9:55 PM #

    Hey Mr. Kauflin.

    First I just wanted to say how much I appreciate your passion and zeal for Christ centered worship. Too often worship turns into a time for us and the truth is, worship is not for us. It is for God and Him alone and I’m truly thankful that you drive that point home so often in your posts and in your (awesome) book.

    Recently our church introduced “I Surrender All” from one of Sovereign Grace’s CDs, I can’t exactly remember which one though. It’s a beautiful song with God honoring lyrics, a hook that is as memorable as can be, and a melody that is simply perfect! I could sing it every time we met if it could be done.

    Tonight, our youth band, myself included, introduce “Hosanna” by Brooke Fraser and that one is another great worship. I’m quite obsessed with Brooke. She’s a great writer to put it plainly and that song is a prime example of nothing but pure, God-given talent used for His glory. I thought it was cool that we, the youth and upcoming generation, were singing a song that sounds as if it was written to awaken a new generation, admonishing us to live for Christ because He is the King of glory and deserves all the worship, all the praise, and all of our lives.

    Thanks so much for you example,
    Ashley

  40. Andrew Gosden October 31, 2008 at 5:55 PM #

    Thanks for all these! I am just choosing a set of songs to learn for the next few months and had a copy of “My soul find rest” lurking, but had not listened to it. I love the way on the album they use a bridge from “All creatures of our God and King” – O praise him, Alleluia.

    As a Brit I don’t know if anyone else out there has heard of the website http://www.resoundworship.org/ which features songs from writers who I think are very much coming from the same place as this blog. They are variable, but one I like and have used a few times is All I have – which is featured on the front page. There is a good Christmas one we used as a solo last year, but could be congregational too called What Kind of Throne. Best of all, it’s all FREE!

  41. Aaron Campbell November 4, 2008 at 9:20 AM #

    I recently came across a song by Phil Wickham called “Because of Your Love.” We have not used it at our church, but it is one that I’m considering. Most of his songs are in keys unfriendly to the congregation, but after being lowered he has some very solid offerings. Furthermore, he is giving away his live album (just sign up for his newsletter) at philwickham.com. I would liken him to Shane and Shane except that there is only one of him.

    AC

  42. Roy November 6, 2008 at 2:04 AM #

    Hi Bob,

    Took me a while to go back to this post. But I’m glad that I’ve found it! I really like the 5/4 measure on Psalm 62. My recent favourite songs do come from Stuart’s There Is A Hope. The title track “There Is A Hope” I think is excellent. I also like Salvation Song (Loved Before The Dawn Of Time) but Townend and Small.

    As an aside, my church music team has been working through your book chapter by chapter for devotional before our practice every week. I thank God for the Truth and lessons that we’ve gained from your book.

    Roy

  43. Bob Kauflin November 6, 2008 at 8:00 AM #

    Roy,

    Thanks for going through Worship Matters. Glad it’s serving your team!

  44. Jonathan Hatch January 17, 2009 at 1:26 AM #

    I’m a bass player at Life Church in Roscoe, IL and one of the songs we taught to the youth was “You Won’t Relent” by Misty Edwards. It’s such a simply written song, but the wording is so profound. It is telling us the that God will not relent and that nothing will stop him from pursuing our hearts. This song really just set our student’s hearts on fire….

    Chorus: You won’t relent
    Until You have it all
    My heart is Yours

    Verse: I’ll set You as a seal upon my heart
    As a seal upon my arm
    For there is love that is as strong as death
    Jealousy demanding as the grave
    And many waters cannot quench this love

    Bridge: Come be the fire inside of me
    Come be the flame upon my heart
    Come be the fire inside of me
    Until You and I are one

    The verse is taken from the “Song of Songs,” which is just so appropriate, because it’s declaring that God(love) is above death and cannot be quenched. It also states how God is jealous for our love and hence the title “You Won’t Relent.”

    Check It Out:

  45. Blaine February 10, 2009 at 9:35 AM #

    Wow, too hard for me to pick, so I have to put two songs:)
    First is a song by Justin Rizzo called ‘Glory will cover the Earth.’ This song is is an amazing corporate worship song, strong theology tying together the glory of the return of Jesus with His kingdom, when He brings heaven and earth together and the corresponding response of creation’s crescendo in praise when the curse is removed (Rom 8:19-21, Rev. 5: 13).

    The second is a song called called “Be Exalted” by Luke Wood, powerful, solid, weighty, and penetrating about the glory of Christ and His exaltation as Judge that all would honor Him as the Father (John 5:26-28, Rev. 19:11, 20:12-13).

    Check them both out here:
    Glory Will Cover the Earth: http://forerunnermediagroup.com/Group/Group.aspx?ID=1000034566 Go to the track player at the top right. It is Track 2 (all of them are amazing).

    Be Exalted: http://forerunnermediagroup.com/Group/Group.aspx?ID=1000034575

  46. David Harris February 20, 2009 at 5:47 PM #

    This doesn’t qualify as the “best” worship song ever by any means; however during our college chapels I’m teaching the students Romans 3:21-26 [ESV]. Right now I’m calling the songs a sort of “Romans 3:21-26 Suite.” If Romans 3:21-26 is the heart of the gospel, than I think it’s important that our students memorize the paragraph — and what better way to memorize it than to sing it. So far I’ve finished 2 songs [vv. 21-22 and 23-24]. Hopefully the tunes are simple and singable enough and not distracting. One song to go. Blessings “in Christ!”

Powered by WordPress. Designed by Woo Themes