On the night of His arrest, Jesus and His disciples sung a hymn to God.

And when they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.” Matt.26:30.

Paul and Silas in prison:

But at midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.” Acts 16:25.

We are encouraged:

Speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord.” Ephs.5:19.

I love to sing hymns to the Lord during my times of personal devotion. There is just something special about hymns. The primary and secondary schools l attended made singing of hymns at the school assembly in the morning and sometimes in the afternoon a part of what we usually do. We sang hymns from the little blue covered “Songs of Praise” booklet. This was where l developed my love for hymns.

When l came to Christ in my teenage years I would buy hymns records and cassettes by Mary McKee and the Genesis, Jim Reeves and a few others.

Hymns are inspired songs written and sung about God, to God and about doctrines of the Bible. We have hymns of praise and thanksgiving; hymns of eulogy to God (in which His Holiness and majesty are praised); we have hymns of consecration, hymns of encouragement and edification, prayer hymns and so on.

I am not a good singer. However in singing hymns to my Father l do it with all my soul, mind and Spirit. You don’t have to be a wonderful singer to sing to God! To men yes, but not to God!

Don’t know much hymns you say or don’t have a hymn book? Goggle them. Just type the first line, for example: “My faith looks up to thee.” You will get the lyrics as well as audio and videos in which you can learn them. You can also go on Spotify, you will find hymns sung by several Christians you can listen to and learn.

Sounds like reign, Jim Reeves, Fernando Ortega, Mary McKee and the Genesis etc.

Does prayer seem like a hideous task when you come into the secret place? Then sing the hymns. Not much of a singer? Pray the hymns! If l happen to be singing from a hymnal and l come across a hymn l don’t know the tune but the words catch my attention or express my heart at the moment l just read it to the Lord as prayer.

Even though we have hymn books at home l have downloaded several on my phone which l use during my devotions, l love to pray before dawn without turning on the lights, so it’s a lot more convenient for me. You could do that too, it comes handy, even if you travel.

Hymns (and other Spirit inspired songs) are various types of prayers, and Bible doctrines put into music. They teach and remind us about some of the doctrines of the Bible.

Take for example the hymn “Trust and obey”

When we walk with the Lord
In the light of His word
What a glory He sheds on our way
While we do His good will
He abides with us still
And with all who will trust and obey

Trust and obey,
For there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus,
but to trust and obey.

Hymns encourage and edify us in our Christian walk.

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord” Col.3:16.

Don’t just sing the hymns, ponder, meditate on the lyrics/words in order to know and understand what you sing, this will help you to really sing them to God from your heart, from the depth of your very being and not from your mind/memory.

Take for example this stanza from “take my life and let it be consecrated Lord to thee

“Take my life, and let it be
Consecrated Lord to Thee
Take my moments and my days
Let them flow in ceaseless praise.

Take my will, and make it Thine
It shall be no longer my mine
Take my heart it is Thine Own,
It shall be Thy royal throne.

Take my love, my Lord I pour
At Thy feet its treasure-store
Take myself, and I will be
Ever only all for Thee.

From my faith looks up to thee:

May Thy rich grace impart
Strength to my fainting heart
My zeal inspire!
As thou hast died for me
O may my love to thee
Pure, warm, and changeless be
A living fire!

Need guidance, tired, weak and discouraged? From Guide me O thou great Redeemer

Guide me o thou great redeemer
Pilgrim through this barren land
I am weak, but thou art mighty
Lead me with thy powerful hand

This hymn eulogizes God’s majesty: My God, how wonderful thou art:

My God, how wonderful thou art,
Thy majesty how bright,
How beautiful Thy mercy-seat,
In depths of burning light!

How dread are Thine eternal years,
O everlasting Lord,
By prostrate spirits day and night
Incessantly adored!

How wonderful, how beautiful,
The sight of thee must be,
Thine endless wisdom, boundless power,
And aweful purity!

O, how I fear thee, living God,
With deepest, tenderest fears,
And worship thee with trembling hope,
And penitential tears!

Yet I may love thee too, O Lord,
Almighty as thou art,
For thou hast stooped to ask of me
The love of my poor heart.

No earthly father loves like thee,
No mother, e’er so mild,
Bears and forbears as thou hast done
With me thy sinful child.

Father of Jesus, love’s reward,
What rapture will it be
Prostrate before thy throne to lie,
And gaze and gaze on thee.

You can’t sing such deeply spiritual songs lightly. You are singing them to God Almighty; therefore they must come from the very depth of your soul. And this can only be when you know the meaning of what you are singing.

In case you don’t know any hymns these might give you a good start, Here are some of my favourites:

My God how wonderful thou art, thy majesty how bright.

Immortal, invisible, God only wise.

King of glory, King of peace, l will love thee.

My faith looks up to thee.

Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God Almighty.

Rock of ages cleft for me let me hide myself in thee.

Take my life and let it be consecrated Lord to thee.

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me.

Guide me o thou great Redeemer, pilgrim through this barren land.

My Jesus l love Thee.

Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus.

Although I have focused primarily on times of personal devotions, I believe we should sing more hymns in our churches today. Many of the songs these days are not inspired by the Spirit. They are just songs that appeal to the sensual nature of man.

I also believe that hymns should be sung without the drums and if with drums very mildly. Sing it as Acappella or simply accompanied by a piano or a keyboard is good enough. I have attended church services where the young drummer just beats the drums so heavily, drowning out the lyrics of the hymn being sung.

However, it is not only hymns that are inspired (Col.3:16), in fact some are not really inspired. And I am not trying to put down other forms of Christian songs. If they are Spirit breathe and doctrinally correct – SING THEM!

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