We love new things. In recent decades we have been conditioned to dislike whatever is old and desire only that which is new. This mindset has infiltrated the church in many ways, especially when it comes to the worship service.
We love the idea of new songs, new instruments, new backgrounds for the projected lyrics, and the list goes on. Because of this, many feel that hymns are no longer relevant for worship.
Which begs the question: What is the purpose of worship and why do some require a specific style of music?
Worship is the lifting up and glorifying of God’s name. God is the only one who is worthy of praise and worship is our way of adoring him and communicating to him his great worth and our utter thankfulness and dependence on him.
Worship is not about us nor is it for us. It is all about him!
When someone says that they cannot worship God with a certain kind of music and they require a specific kind of music and/or song to worship God, what they are really saying is that the mode by which they worship is more important than the one they are worshiping. There is a word for this: idolatry.
When we say that something must be done the way that we want in order for us to worship God we are really just worshiping ourselves, not worshipping God.
Instead, our focus should be on the words we are singing and inclining our hearts to adore God through the songs that we sing. There are some hymns that have been written over the past centuries that have been unmatched in their loving adoration of God and the depth of their theological meaning. Sure, some songs today are catchy and fun and some are very meaningful, but just because they are new does not mean that they promote a worshipful environment.
The point of worship is the focus of our hearts being wholly on God and using the music and lyrics we sing as a means of facilitating that worship.
Hymns are very much still relevant because they were written with worship in mind and we worship the same God today that they did when that hymn was written.