A blog about current Christian songs that have strong, deep lyrics and can be used in contemporary or blended Christian Worship formats.

Good Friday

This Is Amazing Grace by Phil Wickham

Today’s Strong Worship Song is This Is Amazing Grace by Phil Wickham with help from Josh Farro and Jeremy Riddle. This song appears on the album The Ascension which was released in September 2013. This Is Amazing Grace meets all of my criteria of a strong worship song. Believers, who are God’s adopted children through faith in Christ are singing in response to God’s amazing grace to save.  In the lyrics Jesus emerges as the hero who alone rescues us by breaking us free from our sins and spiritual darkness. He did this by being our perfect substitute and bearing our cross which resulted in His death.  Jesus who is none other than the King of kings and King of glory has conquered death and is worthy of our songs of praise.

Scripture references include 2 Corinthians 6:18, Revelation 5:11-13, Revelation 17:14, Revelation 19:16, Psalm 24:8-10, Psalm 36:5-7, Exodus 15:13, 1 John 2:2, and John 18:37.

This Amazing Grace

Who breaks the power of sin and darkness
Whose love is mighty and so much stronger
The King of glory, the King above all Kings

Who shakes the whole earth with holy thunder
Leaves us breathless in awe and wonder
The King of glory, the King above all Kings

This is amazing grace
This is unfailing love
That You would take my place
That You would bear my cross
You laid down Your life
That I would be set free
Jesus I sing for all that You’ve done for me

Who brings our chaos back into order
Who makes the orphan a son and daughter
The King of glory, the King of glory

Who rules the nations with truth and justice
Shines like the sun in all of its brilliance
The king of glory, the King above all Kings

Worthy is the lamb who was slain
Worthy is the King who conquered the grave

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Man of Sorrows by Hillsong United

Today’s strong worship song is Man of Sorrows by Hillsong United which was released on their Glorious Ruins album in July of 2013. The lyrics and the title are based on Isaiah 53 where God through Isaiah prophesied that the Messiah would be “a man of sorrows, familiar with suffering.” This song reads and sings like a hymn. The lyrics accurately and powerfully connect Isaiah 53 to the passion accounts in the four Gospels where Jesus suffers and dies on the cross for the sins of the world. The lyrics focus on Christ and His work of atonement, redemption and reconciliation. He indeed reconciled the very ones who nailed him to the cross. He has done the same for us! The lyrics end with the empty tomb the proclamation of the resurrection of Jesus. “Hallelujah God be praised. He’s risen from the grave.” Lyrics do not get much stronger than this.

Scripture references include Isaiah 53, John 3:16, 1 John 2:2, 2 Corinthians 5:19, and John 8:36.

Man of sorrows Lamb of God
By His own betrayed
The sin of man and wrath of God
Has been on Jesus laid
Silent as He stood accused
Beaten mocked and scorned
Bowing to the Father’s will
He took a crown of thorns
Oh that rugged cross
My salvation
Where Your love poured out over me
Now my soul cries out
Hallelujah
Praise and honour unto Thee

Sent of heaven God’s own Son
To purchase and redeem
And reconcile the very ones
Who nailed Him to that tree

Now my debt is paid
It is paid in full
By the precious blood
That my Jesus spilled

Now the curse of sin
Has no hold on me
Whom the Son sets free
Oh is free indeed

See the stone is rolled away
Behold the empty tomb
Hallelujah God be praised
He’s risen from the grave

 

The Scandal of Grace by Hillsong United

Today’s Strong Worship Song is The Scandal of Grace by Hillsong United. This song is solidly based on numerous portions of Scripture including Ephesians 2:8-9, Isaiah 53:7, 1 Peter 2:22, Revelation 1:5, John 15:13,1 Corinthians 1:23, John 3:16, Romans 9:23, Philippians 3:7-11, Acts 4:12, John 14:6, Psalm 19:6, Ephesians 1:18, 1 Corinthians 15:54-56, 2 Corinthians 5:20-21, and  2 Corinthians 5:15.

Some may be taken back by the title, The Scandal of Grace. There is Biblical grounds for this, however. The crucifixion of Christ, the ultimate example of grace, is referred to by Paul as a “stumbling block” to those who refuse to believe (1 Corinthians 1:23). The Greek word for “stumbling block” is skandolon” which is the word from which “scandal” is derived. Most often we associate scandals with man’s willful sins. The scandal of God’s grace, however is Jesus becoming sin for us (2 Corinthians 5:21) so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God. The lyrics accurately show the depravity of man. They also clearly paint Christ as the hero for lost mankind which is what the gospel is all about.  I choose to post this song at this time partially because it was just released but also because it is a good song for the season of Lent.

The Scandal of Grace

Verse 1:
Grace what have you done?
Murdered for me on that cross
Accused in absence of wrong
My sin washed away in your blood
Too much to make sense of it all
I know that your love breaks my fall
A Scandal of grace you died in my place, for my soul will live

Chorus:
Oh to be like you
Give all I have just to know you
Jesus there’s no one beside you
Forever the hope in my heart
Verse 2:
Death where is your sting
Your power is as dead as my sin
The cross has taught me to live
And mercy my heart not to sin
The day and its troubles shall come
I know that your strength is enough
A Scandal of grace you died in my place, for my soul will live

Bridge:
And it’s all because of you Jesus
It’s all because of you Jesus
It’s all because of your love that my soul will live
 

 


You Are My World by Joel Kanitz & Jonathan Favorite

Today’s strong worship song is You Are My World by Joel Kanitz & Jonathan Favorite as played by the CrossWalk band in Phoenix, AZ. The song is featured on their first ever album called Acoustics which can be purchased on iTunes. I personally know the song writers and absolutely love what they are doing. Please support them by downloading their album. The songs are all original songs and are written with strong lyrics in mind from the start. You are My World was written especially for CrossWalk‘s 5th Anniversary. It is a song of praise giving God full credit for all of the blessings they have as a relatively new congregation. They lyrics correctly proclaim God as the source of all good things. They lyrics also point to our depravity because of sin and the amazing love and grace of God to put our lives back together in Christ.

Bible references include 1 John 2:2, 2 Corinthians 4:7, 1 John 4:8, John 3:16, Psalm 31:10, 2 Corinthians 12:9-10, and Ephesians 2:8-9.

You are My World

Life has brought me down

I feel like I am lost and can’t be found
And when I’ve given up You’re still around
You pull me up

Take this broken clay
Restore it back to life to work today
Because of all Your goodness I will say
Your Name be praised

And in all of this You show

You are grace, You are love
You’re an everlasting Savior
I am weak but You are strong
And I will praise Your Name forever
Praise Your Name forever
You are my world
You are my world

How could I pretend
That any of my works could ever mend
A love for me so great You chose to send
Your only Son

Your love is full and free
And Jesus’ sacrifice has covered me
You’ve given me a life eternally
By grace alone

And in all of this I see

I am finally free
By what You’ve given for me
I’ll be with You for eternity
When I look to the cross I see

Words & Music by Joel Kanitz & Jonathan Favorite. © 2012 CrossWalk Lutheran Ministries, Inc. All rights reserved.


More Than Amazing by Lincoln Brewster

Today’s strong worship song is Lincoln Brewster’s More Than Amazing which came out on his Real Life album in September of 2010. This song meets all of my criteria for a strong worship song. The lyrics are centered on the life and works of Christ. In them Jesus is praised for being the hero of fallen mankind. As true God He performed the miracles of God.  As true God He also displayed the mercies of God the greatest of which was dying on the cross to pay for our sins.  This song is a great congregational testimony to the power and love of God.

Scripture references include Psalm 103:12, Matthew 7:28, John 21:24-25, John 6:19, Mark 4:39, Matthew 28:18, John 13:1-16, Matthew 7:29, Isaiah 35:5, and John 9.

More Than Amazing

You’re the One who walked on water
And You calmed the raging seas
You command the highest mountains
To fall upon their knees
You’re the One who welcomed sinners
And You opened blinded eyes
You restored the brokenhearted
And You brought the dead to life
Forgetting all our sins You remember all Your promises

(Chorus) You are amazing
More than amazing
Forever our God
You’re more than enough You are amazing
With authority You’ve spoken
And You’ve set the captive free
You’re the King who came to serve
And You’re the God who washed our feet
You’re the One who took our burdens
And You bled upon the cross In your kindness and Your mercy
You became the way for us
Forgetting all our sins You remember all Your promises

(Chorus)
Oh how marvelous
Oh how wonderful
Oh how glorious
You are amazing
Oh how marvelous
Oh how wonderful
Oh how glorious
You are You are amazing
More than amazing
Forever our God You’re more than enough


Savior of the World by Ben Cantelon and sung by the Newsboys

Today’s strong worship song is Savior of the World by the Newsboys. This song was featured on the God’s Not Dead album that came out at the end of 2011. The song was written by Ben Cantelon in 2010. The Newsboys have been around a long time, have a familiar sound, and are loved by many. The lyrics are strong on several levels. The song is didactic in teaching the passion of Christ. It is gospel centered. Death has been defeated and Christ has overcome the darkness  for us. He is our Messiah and worthy of all praise.

Initially, I hesitated with this song because of one little word “a”. The songs says “For He made us a way.” Normally we think of Jesus words in John 14:6 in which He says “I am the way…no one comes to the Father except through me.” The word “the” is an important one in John 14:6 in that it is exclusive. Jesus is the only way not just one of many ways. It was pointed out to me, recently, however that in Isaiah 43:16 God says “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness…”  In others words, the lyrics are still Biblical in saying that Jesus provided us a way out of our sin and shame.

Scripture references include Isaiah 53:12, 1 Peter 2:24, John 19:30, 1 Corinthians 15 :54, 2 Timothy 1:10, John 3:16, Isaiah 43:16,

Savior of the Word

God so loved, that He gave His son
To lay down His life for the sake of us
He bore the weight of our sin and shame
With a cry He said, It is finished

Christ the Lord overcame the darkness
He’s alive: death has been defeated

For He made us a way
by which we have been saved
He’s the Savior of the world
So we lift up a shout for his fame and renown
Praise the Lord
Praise the Lord
Jesus, Savior of the world

We must spread the word of His soon return
To reclaim the world for His glory
Let the church now sing of this coming King
Crowned with majesty, our Redeemer

And He reigns, ruler of the heavens
And His name is Jesus, the Messiah

Christ the Lord overcame the darkness
He’s alive: death has been defeated
And He reigns, ruler of the heavens
And His name is Jesus, the Messiah


Alive by Natalie Grant

Today’s strong worship song is Alive by Natalie Grant which was recently released on the WOW 2012 album. This is a great post-Easter song and very strong Biblically and musically. The lyrics paint Jesus as our Creator, Hero and Savior. The backdrop behind the lyrics is Jesus’ resurrection appearance to Mary Magdalene in John 20:11-1. I also like the powerful word pictures in the lyrics like “Mercy’s pen”, “breathing in our dust”, “a crown that bleeds and scars”, “death has lost and love has won”, etc.

Alive

Who but You
Could breathe and leave a trail of galaxies
And dream of me?
What kind of Love
Is writing my story until the end
With Mercy’s pen?
Only You
What kind of king
Would choose to wear a crown that bleeds and scars
To win my heart?
What kind of Love
Tells me I’m the reason He can’t stay
Inside the grave?
You. Is it You?
Standing here before my eyes
Every part of my heart cries

(Chorus)
Alive! Alive!
Look what Mercy’s overcome
Death has lost and Love has won
Alive! Alive! Hallelujah, Risen Lord
The only One I fall before
I am His because He is alive.

Who could speak
And send the demons back from where they came
With just one Name?
What other heart
Would let itself be broken every time until He healed mine?
You. Only You
Could turn my darkness into dawn
Running right into Your arms

Chorus

Emmanuel, the promised King
The baby who made angels sing
Son of Man who walked with us
Healing, breathing in our dust
The author of all history
The answer to all mysteries
The Lamb of God who rolled away
The stone in front of every grave

Alive! Alive! Look what Mercy’s overcome
Death has lost and Love has won
Alive! I am His because He is alive.
Alive!