-Psalm 33:3, 96:1, 98:1, 149:1; Isaiah 42:10; Revelation 5:9, 14:3; Judith 16:13
Have you sung a new song lately? It is good to celebrate what God has done for us and others, in the past. We never want to lose the heritage, and the awareness that we are part of God's whole story (His-story), that goes through the two testaments of the Bible, and into our present time.
The same God that is worshiped by us today, is the one God that all the believers in history have worshiped. But, each new time has new songs that come from the hearts and lips of people being newly touched: saved, healed, delivered by God.
New songs are continually being written. But will we hear them and join in and sing them?
Imagine if, when you grew up, that your parents and grandparents celebrated the birthdays and anniversaries of your deceased great, great grandparents; but not their own or yours. Imagine that, your parents and your parents always told the stories of your great, great grandparents; but rarely if ever, told their stories and never let you share your stories. Imagine, that if you expressed a desire to have your birthday celebrated and remembered, but your parents and grandparents said, "no", and then said, "we are glad you are here, but now be quiet and respectful and join in on remembering our bygone relatives".
This is a picture of how strange it is to celebrate today, but with yesterday's songs only.
The songs written a hundred or two hundred years ago and all the way back to David, were written at that time, to worship God for what he did then. Songs today are the same way for now. The call to sing new songs does not stop with the book Psalms and David, but is echoed by Isaiah and the book of Revelation.
Singing the old songs is fine, just as praying old prayers that have been written down in books of prayer. But there is a call we need to hear, to always be making new songs.
Singing the older songs and new ones creates exquisite worship to God.
We always have new stories. It it is sad, strange, and annoying when someone only tells old stories. We want to hear about what God is doing in your life now.
We do need to hear each other's whole stories. But life is lived going forward. While I do have a history that I tell, I am going to be praising God primarily, for what he is doing currently, in the present. It is proper to, "sing of the mercies of the Lord forever", but we also want to, "make know His faithfulness", specifically.
Sing the new song of what God has done for you. Let others make known His current, present and recent faithfulness, in song. Let's hear it. Teach it to me, so I can sing it with you.
The old songs may very well apply to today and nothing is wrong with singing them, but where are your new songs? Why would you not have new songs or why would you resist others having new songs and wanting to share them? And why would people take offense at new songs and flee from people who desire to share them?
Perhaps people form a sentimental attachment to the old songs and have an issue called nostalgia. God honors the past and God's songwriters have catalogs of songs that were new once and still ring true today. But God is not sentimental or nostalgic.
God does not look at the past and want us to go there. God is always in our present and beckoning us into the future. God does not long for us to return to the old days or this or that revival or renewal. God does not want to take us back to be like this or that people he worked with in the past.
God is always doing a new thing. We follow the ancient paths, yes. But God is moving us in a new way.
New people, new salvations, deliverances, and healings: new songs come out of new experiences with God. It has always been this way. The songs that some people are sentimental or nostalgic for, were once fresh and brand new.
Great new songs, eventually become old, but some leaders keep doing them, for sentimental reasons. For example, Darlene Zschech wrote "Shout To The Lord", in 1993. That is 23 years ago. It was very old by the year 2000. Yet, people became sentimental for that song and kept doing it.
It is or was a great song. But to continue to try to repeat that feeling we got the first 100 times, is sentimentality and is blocking the place where new songs should be sung.
New songs are one of the ways that our faith in present oriented and current. New songs come now for today. We stand on a glory filled past, but God is not in the past. God is in the present, doing things today, with his eyes on the future.
Our worship should reflect that. Worship is for God after all, and not for me to have a feel-good time.