I am not a vocal artist by any means. My wife could attest to that. But my first album is coming out this month, well kind of. T4G Live IV is coming out on October 26! This is the recording of the congregational singing at the Together for the Gospel Conference this past April 2018.
Other than the sermons and free books, the congregational singing is one of the favorites at this conference. Hearing the voices of 12,000 saints (and a piano) is a small foretaste of the singing of tens of thousands of thousands before the throne of heaven (cf. Rev.).
I have enjoyed the previous albums, T4G Live I-III, so I’m excited about this new one coming out. There are 15 songs in this album, including six songs that I heard for the first time at the conference:
- “All Praise to Him,” an adaptation of Horatius Bonar’s hymn (1808-1889)
- “How Rich a Treasure We Possess” by Matt Boswell and Matt Papa (2010)
- “Christ the Sure and Steady Anchor” by Matt Boswell and Matt Papa (2014)
- “Jesus Is Mine” – an adaptation from Catherine Boner (1821-1884)
- “Whate’er My God Ordains Is Right” by Samuel Rodigast (1765), translated by Catherine Winkworth (1829-1878)
- “Afflicted Saint, to Christ Draw Near” by John Fawcett (1782) with additional words from Connie Dever (2018)
Four songs that I grew up singing are included on the list:
- “Come, Ye Sinners, Poor and Needy” by Joseph Hart (1759)
- “He Leadeth Me” by Joseph H. Gilmore (1862)
- “Leaning on the Everlasting Arms” by Anthony Showalter and Elisha Hoffman (1887)
- “Here Is Love” by William Rees (1802-1883) and Robert Lowry (1826-1899) with additional lyrics by Matt Giles and Vell Rivers (2018)
Favorites that I have enjoyed in the last couple of years for both corporate and personal worship made it into the roster:
- “A Christian’s Daily Prayer” by Matt Merker, Dave Fournier, and Jordan Kauflin (2017)
- “His Mercy Is More” by Matt Boswell and Matt Papa (2016)
- “Jesus, Thank You” by Pat Sczebel (2003)
- “O Lord, My Rock and My Redeemer” by Nathan Stiff (2017)
- “Reformation Song” by Bob Kauflin and Tim Chester (2017). I was hoping that we would also sing “Reformation Hymn” by Bob Kauflin and Chris Anderson, maybe next time?
Here are a few personal comments.
First, Bob Kauflin served us well in teaching us by leading music that is both theologically rich and congregationally singable that draws our affections towards Christ and biblical truth.
Second, I was surprised how many of the younger generations really enjoyed singing the old classic hymn, “Leaning on the Everlasting Arms.” One of my friends sitting next to me said, “I have not heard that hymn sung for a long time.” The best hymns are not really based on the time it was written. Not all old hymns are bad; not all new hymns are good–or vice versa! While each generation expresses their worship a little different from the previous generation, we could all enjoy each other’s music as long as they are theologically rich and singable with music that enhances the message of the text, not undermining it (a topic for another blog post).
Lastly and related to the previous observation, I am glad that there are brothers and sisters gifted with creativity and music who brings back old hymns and making them relevant again. I have not heard of “All Praise to Him” by Bonar. The words he wrote continue to be relevant since they are based on the unchanging truth about our Triune God, but the adaptation of new music makes it singable again.
Praise God for these hymns, and may they stir our hearts and minds to love and worship God even more because He is worthy.