Keith Getty on Dangers of Modern Worship, Tells Pastors: “Love Your People Enough To Care About What They Sing”
Getty and his wife seek to write “great modern hymns that would transform the world for Christ” and strengthen and transform children while championing others to do so as well.
At a time when deconstructing one’s faith almost seems trendy, hymn writer Keith Getty is emphasizing the important role theologically sound, biblically-grounded hymns play in strengthening the next generation of believers.
In an interview with The Christian Post, the “In Christ Alone” writer lamented a movement he’s seen permeate churches of all denominations, sizes and demographics across the United States in recent years.
“The pastor goes, ‘I preach the Word. Everybody else do the rest, and I’ll just concentrate on the sermon.’ Well, that’s, that’s stupidity. That’s not how the Bible was written. That’s not how the Church fathers behaved,” Getty said.
Everyone from the great reformers like Martin Luther and John Calvin to revivalists including Jonathan Edwards and Dwight Moody understood that, “Yes, you preach the Word, but what your congregation sings and the shape of your services, from the prayers to the Bible readings, is crucially important,” he continued.
“We have to be able to do that,” Getty stressed. “What if we don’t do that? What will happen is, we’ve got a generation of children going to churches that are imaginative and lively and fill their imaginations but are shallow. Or else, we get people going to churches that are full of truth, but they’re so boring and so loveless and joyless, that there’s none of the attractiveness of Christianity to draw people. The first thing that actually attracts their imagination will draw them away.”
He added, “There’s a huge danger with it. I would say to any pastor or teacher out there—love your people enough to care about what they sing.”
Keith Getty and his wife, Kristyn, are behind some of today’s most beloved hymns, including “He Will Hold Me Fast,” “Christ Our Hope in Life and Death” and “The Power of the Cross.” The Irish-born duo’s organization, Getty Music, includes a publishing company of modern hymn writers, a record label, touring company and an online learning company.
Through their platform, Getty said he and his wife seek to write “great modern hymns that would transform the world for Christ” and strengthen and transform children while championing others to do so as well.
The father of four daughters, ages 10, 7, 6 and 3, Getty feels strongly about instilling Scripture through song in children at a young age. Thanks in part to the rise of social media, the challenges facing children today are “unprecedented,” he stressed, and thus, parents can “get away with less.”
“I think we have to make sure that our children know the Scriptures better than they know us, better than even they know their own careers,” he said. “I think they have to be more passionate and be more creative and imaginative in love for the Lord than their love for Disney. If we do not put songs that so fill their emotions with the Lord, then ‘Frozen’ will take those songs, and ‘Frozen’ is anti-Christian. They’re great songs…but they’re not Christian.”