Your favorite hymnal

Discussion in 'Worship' started by StephenMartyr, Jul 18, 2019.

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  1. StephenMartyr

    StephenMartyr Puritan Board Freshman

    I have a hymnbook I keep by my bed that I go through sometimes. It's from a church my parents and I attended when I must have been around maybe 10? It's fairly old. While some songs are great, some have not so good theology.

    What is a pretty sound hymnal? I'm hearing a lot about a "Trinity Hymnal" these days. Is that one good? I'm looking at getting another one.

    What is your favorite hymnal?
     
  2. Stephen L Smith

    Stephen L Smith Moderator Staff Member

    I have two, and I used them both for personal devotions. Likewise, I keep these by my bed.
    1. Christian Worship published by the Christian Worship Publishing Trust https://www.christian-worship.org.uk/
    2. Sing to the Lord published by the Reformed Churches of New Zealand https://rcnz.org.nz/our-music/

    Both hymnbooks include a full Psalter and hymns.
     
  3. StephenMartyr

    StephenMartyr Puritan Board Freshman

    Thanks! :) I'll look into these!
     
  4. Rutherglen1794

    Rutherglen1794 Puritan Board Sophomore

    Look into Hymns of Grace to see if you like it. It’s produced by John MacArthur’s ministry.

    Also, I hear great things about the Trinity Psalter Hymnal; which, as the name suggests, is both a Psalter and a Hymnal.

    PS. I live down the highway in K elowna.
     
  5. Brian Withnell

    Brian Withnell Puritan Board Junior

    Bought a few of these when they first came out. Like it a lot.
     
  6. Ryan&Amber2013

    Ryan&Amber2013 Puritan Board Junior

    Yes the Trinity is great.
     
  7. jwithnell

    jwithnell Moderator Staff Member

    The OPC has devoted a great deal of effort to produce three Trinity hymnals over the years. The editorial boards have included both theological and musical expertise and have produced works that are solid in both regards.

    All are standard references in my house both for the music and also because they include the reformed standards -- this is generally the first resource we grab for the WCF and catechism.

    The first, or "blue" hymnal is likely the best reformed hymnal of the 20th century although challenges with copywrite restrictions sometimes resulted in familiar hymns being set to less familiar music -- see For All the Saints.

    The second (often the "Red" hymnal though churches could select additional colors) tried to adopt more popular trends. Most hymns regained familiar tunes, but unison singing became more common.

    Most recently, the hymnal has been reworked with a full Psalter. Unison hymns often were switched to full harmony. In singing through the Psalter I learned a few tunes I liked a lot but in other cases, came to understand why some tunes fell out of use. I acknowledge, though, that the metrical settings likely drove some decisions.

    The OPC website maintains an index and midi files which help when learning a new hymn.
     
  8. Reformed Bookworm

    Reformed Bookworm Puritan Board Junior

    We have the Hymns of Philip Doddridge on sale today for $10. I would be happy to share some example hymns.

    http://bit.ly/doddhymns
     
  9. C. M. Sheffield

    C. M. Sheffield Puritan Board Junior

    Gadsby's Hymns is the one by my bedside. It is a sweet collection of hymns that I have kept close at hand for many years.
     
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2019
  10. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    The 1650 Psalter is a great hymnbook.

    I found both the old Blue Trinity Hymnal and the Red Trinity Hymnal to both have hymns that theologically have a good amount of problems (besides that they are not psalms).
     
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  11. JOwen

    JOwen Puritan Board Junior

    The Divine Hymnal.
     
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  12. RPEphesian

    RPEphesian Puritan Board Junior

    The Trinity Hymnal will always have a special place in my heart. Many rich songs in that one.

    You might also look up the Gadsby Hymnal. I've heard good about that one.
     
  13. Andrew35

    Andrew35 Puritan Board Freshman

    Quick question (And so as not to derail the thread, I'll answer the OP first: my family loves the Trinity Psalter Hymnal):

    Do EP advocates disapprove of religious poetry (hymns, in this case) for personal edification? Because that's the sense of some of the comments I'm getting, but I'm not quite aware of how distinctions are drawn--or if there are any--between public/private worship, poetry and song, etc.
     
  14. Reformed Bookworm

    Reformed Bookworm Puritan Board Junior

    Personal edification is much different than the public worship of God. I believe they would answer your question as no. Poems and hymns are fine for your personal edification.
     
  15. EvanVK

    EvanVK Puritan Board Freshman

    I consider private and family worship to be as much under the RPW as the formal/public worship of the church on the sabbath.
     
  16. Reformed Bookworm

    Reformed Bookworm Puritan Board Junior

    As someone that holds to EP, you would condemn the use of poetry for personal edification? What about the Puritans?
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2019
  17. StephenMartyr

    StephenMartyr Puritan Board Freshman

    This Psalmody talk has really been affecting me. Standing for the music time at the start of the service I'm wondering how much God is being worshipped. Some of the songs we were singing at the previous church had parts where we repeated a phrase 4 times. Lots of repetition. The church now has less of that, but it happens sometimes. So many songs that are being sung that I think are meant to be listened to at home. They aren't songs everyone can easily sing to.

    I want to thank everyone for their input into this matter.
     
  18. StephenMartyr

    StephenMartyr Puritan Board Freshman

    What are people's thoughts here about hymns by the likes of Luther, Fanny Crosby, and those "big name" types? Appropriate for church?
     
  19. StephenMartyr

    StephenMartyr Puritan Board Freshman

    No sorry. I'll check it out, thanks!
     
  20. Reformed Bookworm

    Reformed Bookworm Puritan Board Junior

  21. Alan D. Strange

    Alan D. Strange Puritan Board Junior

    Really? So you have the preaching of the Word in both? The sacraments? Is every sort of person permitted to read the word or pray aloud? Remember, no lay comments on the reading of Scripture. Are you a minister? Or at least an elder (if that's your interpretation)? How do you properly lead all of this if only a layman?

    I need a lot of explanation to begin to understand what you mean by this assertion above. If you just mean that you are EP in private and secret worship, that does not begin to describe what regulated worship means.

    Peace,
    Alan
     
  22. Afterthought

    Afterthought Puritan Board Junior

    There is a variance of opinion on what to do with hymns of mere human composure. Some believe that the principle that we should only worship God as He commands applies to public worship only, so there is no problem in private or family. Some will hold that the principle additionally applies to family worship, so there is no problem with private. Some hold that the principle holds in all settings and will say hymns of themselves violate the principle and therefore avoid them. Some who hold that the principle holds in all settings will recognize a place for hymns in the category of "meditation" or "recreation" (i.e., a part of one's generic worship of doing all things to the glory of God), although some people in this category will avoid hymns anyway for other reasons (e.g., They are used as false worship in many churches, so why would we want to have anything to do with them? Or, the use of hymns in any setting tends to eventually make its way into worship, so let's avoid them. Or, some or all hymns that currently exist are inherently an attempt to worship God--despite their theoretical validity--so let's avoid those ones.).

    Undoutebdly though, even if they find some place for hymns of mere human composure, the EPer will find the psalms to be their favorite Book of Praise (Hymn Book) even for meditation or recreation: for it is the Word of God upon which they are meditating day and night. Hence, some of the comments on this thread (others are viewing "hymn" in the title of the thread to refer to songs that are not the psalms and are responding accordingly).

    Here is my opinion written on a Facebook comment in response to this question so far as how hymns relate to the Second Commanement.

    "I agree with your position that hymns ought not to be sung as a specific act of worship to God, even in private; and that the rule for worshipping God is the same in public and in private. However, the way I see it, outside of that setting, I would characterize hymn singing as "meditation" or "religious recreation" (John Brown of Haddington's phrase from his preface to the 1650 Psalter).

    The way I see it: Leviticus 10 shows us that the worship that is regulated by God's will is an action that involves "drawing nigh unto God" for the purposes of "worshipping" him (meaning, a "bowing down;" hence, involving a full and complete attention and submission to God's will). An action joined with this movement and with this intent is an attempt to worship by a specific act and must strictly be regulated by God's will. One could make a painting. If however one attempts to draw near to God to worship God either by making the painting or with the painting itself, they are acting against God's law.

    As for meditation, it is more inward focused, contemplative; a communing with one's heart; a turning over of one's thoughts; done especially with the intent of stirring one's heart up to worship God (perhaps by prayer or by singing a psalm or portion of a psalm). Meditation is to be performed on all sorts of subjects: God's nature, will, works of providence and works of creation, God's word. Meditation can take the form of a song, as seen, e.g., by Psalm 119. We can thereby also see that although meditation can be found (and ought to be found) in a specific act of worship of God (namely, singing the psalms), a meditation itself is not necessarily a specific act of worship, as it is not necessarily a drawing near to God to worship him.

    Some hymns are more meditative in nature rather than an inherent attempt to draw near to God to worship him. Indeed, if one is singing such a hymn while busy with something else, it cannot be viewed as worship: one is distracted by other things and cannot draw near to God with the purposes of worshipping him. Whatever else one might say, if one can find a hymn that is a mere meditation instead of an inherent attempt to worship God in a specific manner, singing or composing that hymn is lawful in that respect. (There may be other reasons to avoid singing hymns though or that might make singing them unlawful; I personally do not sing them.) Intent is also key here as to whether the hymn is being used meditatively or being used as an attempt to worship God by a specific action."
     
  23. Reformed Bookworm

    Reformed Bookworm Puritan Board Junior

    If this discussion is to continue, someone should start a new thread. Although, I believe there was a thread somewhat recently dedicated to the RPW in personal and private worship.
     
  24. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    :judge: A reminder to try not to derail the topic of a current thread with any significant subtopic. And suggestions: search for old threads before starting a new one. If that does not yield sufficient information, then start a new thread with a more specific question than the old threads that may exist. Here are several threads on the RPW and private/family worship.
    https://www.puritanboard.com/threads/the-rpw-in-private-family-worship.98403/
    https://www.puritanboard.com/threads/the-rpw-and-family-worship.91287/#post-1117803
    https://www.puritanboard.com/threads/rpw-applies-to-private-worship.66508/
     
  25. EvanVK

    EvanVK Puritan Board Freshman

    Sorry I should've re-read what you said, For some reason my brain inserted 'worship' for 'edification'. However I stand by what I said lol, but it didnt really pertain to your question. :coffee:
     
  26. EvanVK

    EvanVK Puritan Board Freshman

    No, no, no, irrelevant, no, no, I read the scriptures to my family, pray with them and sing the psalms as i am commanded to do.

    I'm not really sure what you're getting at? Are we not commanded to worship in our families? Is that worship not regulated? Can we all dance around naked and sing kumbaya? :applause:

    EDIT: Also, why the sarcastic tone? That seemed rather unnecessary to me.
     
  27. Alan D. Strange

    Alan D. Strange Puritan Board Junior

    @EvanVK

    My dear brother:

    A moderator has already rebuked our departure from the topic of the post. I incautiously allowed myself to go down that path in wonderment at your post. We must not continue dialog about that on this thread.

    I'll not do so further other than to say that I appreciate your godly family worship, though you've not begun to answer the complex of matters that attend your assertion that the RPW, simpliciter, applies to private and secret worship.

    Just this additional note: I would refer you in the first thread cited by Moderator Coldwell to the comment of Professor Duguid, as well as the WDFW, cited both by the Professor and the Moderator. The WDFW, e.g., urges widespread family prayer, among several other things quite distinct from the RPW in public worship.

    Peace,
    Alan
     
  28. EvanVK

    EvanVK Puritan Board Freshman

    Fair enough, will do. However, If there is some other secret standard for worship that I don’t know about please by all means reveal it to us!
     
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