Here is the opening excerpt from a recent article by Dan Cogan:
I have been what many would call a “worship leader” for close to two decades. When I first became involved in “worship ministry” in an Assemblies of God youth group we sang such songs as The Name of the Lord Is a Strong Tower, As the Deer, Lord I Lift Your Name on High, and others of the era of the 1980s and 90s. Ours was considered a stylistically progressive church since we used almost exclusively contemporary songs.
This meant that if I were to visit a “traditional” church, not only would I be unfamiliar with the hymns, I would also likely cringe when they sang them and in my heart ridicule them (the people rather than the songs) as being old-fashioned.
It was during these formative years in my experience as a worship leader that I began to introduce even more contemporary songs to our youth group. It was then that I discovered artists like Delirious, Darrel Evans, Matt Redman, and Vineyard Music with their songs Did You Feel the Mountains Tremble, Trading My Sorrows, Heart of Worship, and Hungry.
As a young musician who desired to honor Christ, I found these songs to be particularly compelling. I felt different when we sang them. The way Nirvana gave voice to the angst of Generation X, bands like Delirious were giving voice to a generation of young Christians who didn’t feel they could relate to the songs of their parents and grandparents.
Over the years when I would occasionally hear a hymn, the language was always strikingly foreign, with Ebenezers and bulwarks, diadems and fetters. Which only served to confirm my bias that hymns were simply out-of-date. They had served their purpose. They had run their course.
Continue reading the entire article here at DanCogan.com.
“It would be better if [Christians doubting the grace in their lives] spent their time in praying, and asking Christ for more grace, instead of bestowing complaints of their supposed gracelessness!”
– Richard Baxter
1615 – 1691
“Maybe at the present the authorities smile on the church of God; but within a while it may frown, and the storm of persecution arise. There was a time when the churches had ‘rest throughout all Judea’ (Acts 9:31). It was a blessed time. But how long did it last? Alas! not long.”
– William Gurnall
1617 – 1679
Scripture records Christ as “the last Adam” in 1 Cor 15:45. Were there others who stood in as an “Adam” in the course of redemptive history? I think the Bible shows this to be the case, with Noah, Abraham, David, and the nation of Israel (summed up in Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob) being the “interim Adams” before the last One appeared.
This chart shows my view on how Israel fulfilled this role.
Comparing Adam and Israel
|Formed by God from the dust of the earth.
(Gen 2:7; 1 Cor 15:47)
|Formed by God from the dust of the people of the world. (Gen 11:10 – 11:3; Deut 7:7)|
|Was brought to life by the word and breath of God. (Gen 1:26 & 27; 2:7)||Was brought into being by the word of God. (Gen 12:2 & 3; 15:1; Ex 3)|
|Had close fellowship with God. (Gen 2:15ff; 3:8a)||Had close fellowship with God. (Gen 15; Ex 15; 2 Kings 23:1 – 27)|
|Was given a covenant within which to live and prosper. (Gen 2:16 & 17; Hosea 6:7)||Was given a covenant within which to live and prosper. (Gen 17:14; Ex 19:3 – 6; 24:3 – 8; Neh 9 & 10)|
|Broke the covenant and received the penalty of death, which was carried out in due time. (Gen 3:6 & 7; 22 – 24; 5:5)||Broke the covenant and received the penalty of death, which was carried out in the fullness of time. (Deut 31:16 – 18; Judges 2:11 – 15; Jer 11:10 – 13; 1 Kings 11:9 – 11; Ezek 44:1 – 7; Hosea 6:7)|
|Was cast out of the garden, cursed to walk and work in the world which was wrecked by The Fall. (Gen 3:23 & 24; 3:17 – 19)||Was divorced by God, left desolate, cursed to walk and work in darkness until the light of Christ. (Jer 3:6 – 10; Matt 15:12 – 14; 23:37 & 38; 2 Cor 3:12 – 17)|
|As a type of Christ, Adam points us to the anti-type, Christ Jesus, in whom there is life for Adam’s children who are secure in the Last Adam. (1 Cor 15:45)||As an echo of Adam, Israel points us to the anti-type, Christ Jesus, in whom there is life for Abraham’s children of promise. (Gal 4:21 – 31)|