American Revivalist Hymns (Marsden)

(This is a repost from February, 2012). Many aspects of today's shallow American hymnody are rooted in the 19th-century revivals.   This is a huge topic, of course, but to get a little glimpse I like how George Marsden writes about it in Fundamentalism and American Culture. "The surge of revivalism associated with the rise of… Continue reading American Revivalist Hymns (Marsden)

American Hymnody: The Musical Dark Ages

Around the turn of the 19th century, Christianity (and religion in general) was undergoing a change: it was becoming more and more democratic (a religion of the people, for the people, and by the people).  Not only did this democratization affect doctrine, ecclesiology, and piety, it also affected Christian and religious hymnody.  Here’s how Nathan… Continue reading American Hymnody: The Musical Dark Ages

American Revivalist Hymnody

  Many aspects of today's American hymnody are rooted in the 19th century revivals.   This is a huge topic, of course, but to get a little glimpse I like how George Marsden writes about this in Fundamentalism and American Culture. "The surge of revivalism associated with the rise of Charles Finney in the 1820s which… Continue reading American Revivalist Hymnody

The Gurgling Gullet of Modern Religious Self-Confession (Barth on Hymnody)

 Tucked away in I.2 of Barth's Church Dogmatics is a little section on hymnody.  It is one of Barth's running footnotes (in smaller print) in his discussion on the subjective aspect of the Holy Spirit in revelation and man (I.2, Part III.16.2).  The section is quite long, so I'll have to paraphrase it. First, Barth talks… Continue reading The Gurgling Gullet of Modern Religious Self-Confession (Barth on Hymnody)

Don’t Come to the Garden Alone!

I'm sure many of you have heard the hymn "In the Garden" by C. Austin Miles (d. 1946).  The song has always given me the creeps.  Here are a few lyrics. "I come to the garden alone, while the dew is still on the roses...he speaks, the sound of his voice is so sweet the… Continue reading Don’t Come to the Garden Alone!