Song book content (1 of 2)

An interesting post (one of several) by a fellow blogger and hymn enthusiast.

Earnestly Speaking

I’m calling this two-installment blog “Song book content” because its subjects, although they would typically be called “hymnals,” are more appropriately labelled “song books.”  The books that most churches use for “worship” content rarely consist primarily in hymns, so I’m not using the term “hymnal.”

First, we should define a few words, inasmuch as such definition is possible.

  1. Song. A song, simply put, has words and a melody.  (Purely instrumental music is not properly called “song.”)
  2. Gospel song. A gospel song, you might think has to do directly with the gospel message, i.e., the good news that Jesus came, died for mankind, and was raised.  However, in the U.S., the “gospel song” is generally understood to be a song other than a hymn, and other than a contemporary Christian song.  More specifically, gospel songs tend to predominate among church songs written during the 19th and the first half…

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