Monday, June 02, 2014

Book Review: Forgotten Songs: Reclaiming the Psalms for Christian Worship

The subtitle of this book is Reclaiming the Psalms for Christian Worship. It could also be subtitled: Modern Baptists Discover Psalmody. Though not all the authors are Baptists, the majority are, and the book had its origins in a conference that was to be held at Union University, but was prevented by a tornado that tore through the campus not long before the conference was to be held. The work is divided into two parts: Biblical and Historical Foundations, and Practice. A look at the book on will give the table of contents. Overall, I was quite pleased with the book, though, as with any such collection, the essays vary, not so much in quality, but as in how they affected me. I found C. John Collins' essay thin and unconvincing. The most helpful is Leland Ryken's essay "Reclaiming the Psalms for Private Worship." The essays by Craig Blaising and Douglas Bond I found quite moving. The essay by James Grant on introducing psalm-singing to a congregation was full of helpful advice. The essay by Richard Wells on the Psalms and pastoral prayer is challenging, especially in this day of short or non-existent pulpit prayer. The bibliographical essay (Appendix 3) is very good, though Garrett missed William Binnie's very fine work A Pathway into the Psalter. All in all a useful guide for bringing the Book of Psalms more fully into the life of the church and the Christian.


Vaughn Hathaway said...

Do the authors support the use of the imprecatory psalms?

Chris said...

John Day from Dallas has a good disertation on the imprecatory psalms. Hosted at gordon/conwell by Hildebrandt.