Blasphemy! No worship song is bad!
Everyone approaches the Lord in a different way. For me, it was solid Bible teaching. Well, it was a girl. Then it was the Bible thing.
I also got hooked on youth group through a sweet combo of a loving youth leader and a truly rockin’ worship band. They turned it up loud, and every song sounded amazing. I sang along, even if I had no idea what the song was about. So did everyone else.
Years later, I started playing guitar myself, and it wasn’t long before I realized the impoverished condition of Christian music. I’ve been told it used to be worse — and I believe it — but just like how my blogs treat Christians and churches at large, I believe we can do better. Christians and church can do a lot better in many ways, but some of the music we put out is embarrassing, particularly in the praise n’ worship sector.
If you start getting honest, anyone can write a modern worship song:
If you take a step back and begin to look at the lyrics to your Sunday anthems, some of them are really awful. Some seem to be a thoughtless smattering of phrases with no single direction; some contain seriously flawed doctrine; some are plain annoying.
Using a point system, based on my personal expert authoritative opinion of everything, I’ve ranked the top ten worst contemporary worship songs sung in modern church. I checked SongSelect for the top songs still rockin’ the pews (or cushioned chairs), then added some cringeworthy favorites of yore, narrowed the list to ten, and finally ranked them based on seven factors:
Doctrine. If it conflicts with the Bible, why is it a worship song?
Oversimplicity. We’re humans, but we’re not all four years old.
Redundancy. I guess some writers believe it requires 16 reps for it to really sink in.
Lyrics. If it sounds like nonsense, it actually is nonsense.
Structure. Writing a song is like building a house. It needs something to hold it up, besides a big ugly pole in the middle that everyone notices.
Who? Is this song about God? Myself? The church? My wife?
Annoying. The “Call Me Maybe” syndrome is applicable to church material as well. Sometimes, you just don’t want to hear it again. Ever.
10) Tell the World
The bridge of this song feels like sandpaper to the forehead. Well, most of the song does.
“C’mon, c’mon, we’ll tell the world about You.”
9) I Could Sing Of Your Love Forever
Watch the congregation when they arrive at the “like we’re dancing now” part. Awkward stuff.
“Oh I feel like dancing. It’s foolishness, I know.”
8) God of This City
A fine concept, but this is most certainly not a worship song.
“We believe, we believe, greater things, greater things, greater things, greater things.”
7) Oh Happy Day
It’s already troublesome when the title suggests a children’s song.
“Oh happy day, happy day, I’ll never be the same, forever I am changed.”
6) I Am Free
Another song with an indirect prompt to dance. Even if you’re free to dance, it doesn’t mean you should.
“Through you my heart screams I am free.”
5) In the Secret
This is either a mixed up worship song, or a rather intimate love poem for a spouse. Yikes.
“I want to touch you… I want to know you more.”
4) Marvelous Light
An enigma from start to finish, written almost entirely in passive tense. Even the term “marvelous light” doesn’t really make sense.
“Your kindness wakened me, awakened me from my sleep.”
“My dead heart now is beating.”
3) All Who Are Thirsty
I’m thirsty for some variety.
“Dip your heart in the stream of life.”
2) Come, Now Is the Time to Worship
Now? Right now?
“Still the greatest treasure remains for those who gladly choose you now.”
1) Friend of God
My buddy God and I even have a secret handshake.
“I am a friend of God, I am a friend of God, I am a friend of God, He calls me friend.”
More awesome commentary on worship songs:
So, which ones did I miss?