Worship Styles

An old farmer went to the city one weekend and attended a big city church. He came home and his wife asked him how it was.

"Well," said the farmer, "it was good. They did some things differently though. They sang praise and worship choruses instead of hymns."

"Praise and worship choruses?" said his wife. "What are those?"

"Oh, they're okay. They're sort of like hymns, only different," said the farmer.

"Well, what's the difference?" asked his wife.

The farmer said, "Well, it's like this. If I were to say to you:
        'Martha, the cows are in the corn'
well, that would be a hymn. If, on the other hand, I were to say to you:

Martha, Martha, Martha,
Oh, MARTHA, MARTHA, MARTHA,
the cows, the big cows,
the brown cows,
the black cows,
the white cows,
the black and white cows,
the COWS, COWS, COWS,
are in the corn,
are in the corn,
are in the corn,
are in the corn,
the CORN, CORN, CORN.'
"Then if I were to repeat the whole thing 4 or 5 times and include guitar and drum solos, well that would be a praise chorus."

 

As luck would have it, the exact same Sunday, a young, new Christian from the city church attended the small country church. He came home and his wife asked him how it was.

"Well," said the young man, "it was good. They did some things differently though. They sang hymns instead of regular songs.."

"Hymns?" said the wife. "What are those?"

"Oh, they're okay. They're sort of like regular songs, only different." said the young man.

"Well, what's the difference?" asked his wife.

The young man said, "Well, it's like this. If I were to say to you:
        'Martha, the cows are in the corn.'
well, that would be a regular song. If on the other hand, I were to say to you:

'Oh Martha, Dear Martha, hear thou my cry.
Inclinest thine ear to the words of my mouth.
Turn thou thy whole wondrous ear by and by
to the righteous, inimitable, glorious truth.
For the way of the animals - who can explain?
There in their heads is no shadow of sense,
hearkenst they in God's sun or his rain
unless from the mild, tempting corn they are fenced.
Yea those cows in glad bovine, rebellious delight
have broken free their shackles, their warm pens eschewed.
Then goaded by minions of darkness and night,
they all my mild sweet corn have chewed.
So look to that bright shining day by and by.
Where all foul corruptions of earth are reborn,
where no vicious animal makes my soul cry
and I no longer see those foul cows in the corn.
"Then, if I were to do only verses one, three, and four, well, that would be a hymn."

 
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This page last updated 2002/06/13

Contact Jerry McAllister -- Email: jerrymc@msu.edu