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Love So Amazing … (Easter, 2007)

As I contemplate this time of special worship, the Jewish Passover and the Christian Easter, I am reminded of a conflict the English had within the church during the 17th and 18th centuries.

 There were those who wanted to “lift” the style of worship by singing hymns written by their countrymen. The powers that existed in the church at the time felt that the only “proper” songs where those already in the Bible, primarily the Psalms. “Hymns of worship should be drawn from holy scripture, NOT the human condition,” they would insist.

This presented two problems for the worshipers who desired change. First, song services were typically rigid, full of pomp and circumstance, and emotionally flat. (Intrepreted: BORING!)

Second, then as now, there were plenty of folks who believed that Christ suffered and died for the “human condition.” (I happen to agree with them, although I certainly am aware that there are other humane and loving faiths that ascribe to a different doctrine.) 

I am glad the hymnist Issac Watts persevered through the criticism to write over 600 hymns stemming from the “human condition.” One of my favorites concludes with this well-known verse:

 Were the whole realm of nature mine, that were a present far too small;

Love so amazing, so divine, demands my soul, my life, my all.

There’s no need to fret over hidden meaning here. I think Mr. Watts meant EXACTLY what he said.


James D. Sutton, Psychologist


April 4, 2007 - Posted by | Inspirational

1 Comment »

  1. Very interesting! Thanks for the history lesson on hymns. I did not know this tid bit of church history.


    Comment by tobeme | April 4, 2007 | Reply

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