Blog Archives

Why Should Our Songs Be Cross-Centered?


In the video below, CJ Mahaney lays out four compelling reasons for having cross saturated songs. I have summarized the points here, but you should listen to CJ’s explanation.

1.The cross is fundamentally central to the storyline of God, thus it should be fundamentally central to the corporate life of God’s people, especially when expressed in worship.

2.We sing cross-centered songs because it reminds us that we cannot come to God on our own. We are in desperate need of a mediator, and singing about the cross reminds us of what Christ has done for us to reconcile us to the Father.

3.The cross isn’t just the center of the story this side of  heaven, but for all of eternity! Heaven doesn’t ever get over the cross. Rev. 5:1-14 shows us that we will be singing about what Jesus did on the cross for all of eternity. Thus it is a picture of Heaven when we do it.

4.Singing songs that are filled with the gospel message is an opportunity to preach to yourself. In fact, it may be one of the only times during the entire week that a believer gets to hear himself proclaim the truth of the faith that he received by grace. It is vitality important to your soul to hear the gospel and be reminded of the gospel and this most certainly happens when singing. Read the rest of this entry

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Together For The Gospel


We are brothers in Christ united in one great cause – to stand together for the Gospel. We are convinced that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been misrepresented, misunderstood, and marginalized in many churches and among many who claim the name of Christ. Compromise of the Gospel has led to the preaching of false gospels, the seduction of many minds and movements, and the weakening of the church’s Gospel witness.

As in previous moments of theological and spiritual crisis in the church, we believe that the answer to this confusion and compromise lies in a comprehensive recovery and reaffirmation of the Gospel – and in Christians banding together in Gospel churches that display God’s glory in this fallen world… Read the rest of this entry

What is Your Life Centered On?


C.J. Mahaney writes in his bookLiving The Cross-Centered Life:  Keeping the Gospel THE Main Thing”

“Each of our lives is centered on something. What’s at the center of yours?  Think about it for a moment.  What’s really the main thing in your life? Only one thing can truly be first in priority; so what’s at the top of your list, second to none? What are you most passionate about? What do you love to talk about? What do you think about most when your mind is free? 

 Or try this, what is it that defines you?  Is it your career?  A relationship?  Maybe it’s your family or your ministry?  It could be some cause or movement or some political affiliation.  Or perhaps your main thing is a hobby or talent you have or even your house and possessions… Read the rest of this entry

Cross-Centered Worship: “The Greatest of All”


We have noticed a disturbing trend in the corporate worship songs of the church. Perhaps you have too? It seems that we sing very little about the main point of Christianity. This is largely because the church wants to be more “sensitive” to those who are not Christians.

With the best research in hand, we are told that non-Christians don’t really want to hear about sin and guilt and being accountable to a holy God. They also don’t want to hear about a Savior dying on a bloody cross for their sins. To reach them, we are confidently told, we must eliminate these topics from our sermons and our songs. Sadly, much of the Evangelical church has mistakenly signed on to this approach. We could not disagree more strongly!

The message of a crucified and risen Savior and the reconciliation that this can bring is the only message the church has! It is the one and only message the church has been entrusted with and that the lost so desperately needs to hear.

As one who has been responsible for leading corporate singing for years, I can attest to how frustrating it has become to find songs that are worth singing! There are many out there, but it takes time to find them. Because of this, we have started a new feature at Not For Itching Ears. Each week, we will post one worthy (at least in our opinion) worship song for you to listen to. We will post the lyrics as well as the Mp3 along with a chord chart when possible. This weeks selection is “The Greatest of All” , we hope you enjoy it.  After listening to it, please rate it by taking our quick poll.  You will find the poll at the bottom of this post.

The Greatest of All

 
The greatest of all transactions
The costliest purchase price
Father, Your Son’s atoning death
Was given in payment for mine
To buy me back from slavery
To set me free from my chains
 
Chorus
Redeemed, how I love to proclaim it
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb
Redeemed through Your infinite mercy
Your child forever I am
 
Now I’ll never know Your judgment
You ransomed and saved my soul
Jesus, Your death and Yours alone
Has canceled the debt that I owed
You satisfied the law’s demand
And new life’s been given to me
 

 © 2007 Sovereign Grace Worship (ASCAP) Chorus by Fanny J. Crosby, music and additional words by Pat SczebelAs recorded on Sons & Daughters

 

 Listen to “The Greatest of All” 

Download the FREE guitar chart for this song here:  http://www.sovereigngracestore.com/productinfo.aspx?QuickAddProductID=M4220-04-57

Listen to other songs in this series:

Cross-Centered Worship Songs: “Oh What Grace”

Cross-Centered Worship: “The Gospel Song”

Cross-Centered Worship “All I Have Is Christ”

Cross-Centered Worship: “The Prodigal”

Cross-Centered Christmas Worship Song: “Glory Be to God”

Cross-Centered Worship: “The Greatest of All”

What Are You Thankful For?


Thanksgiving has arrived!  If you are like me, you are busy getting ready for the big day.   There will be lots of food, visiting family and friends,  football, pie and shopping on Friday (I need a new laptop!).   With all these activities, it is easy to forget that the whole purpose of the day is to give thanks to God for all he has done in our lives.  As Americans, we have a lot to be thankful even in these hard economic times.  Those of us who are followers of Jesus Christ have the ultimate reason to be thankful.  Not just on Thanksgiving day, but every second of every day… Read the rest of this entry

When Did “Worship” Become the Singing of a Song?


The memory is forever etched in my mind.  It was a typical Sunday, the service was over. There was a line of people who wanted to talk to me. One of them was our sound guy, who said  “Worship was great today pastor!  Your guitar solo was AWESOME!”   I remember this comment for two reasons.  It was the first time in my ministry where I realized that people were equating songs with worship.  What he meant was that he liked the songs we played.  Even then, I knew that worship was much more than singing or listening to a song.  The other troubling part for me was that I did not have any guitar solos, and the guy who thought I did was the soundman!  (He had taken too many drugs as a young man, and apparently heard things that were not there.  Not good if you are a sound guy.  I guess I should be happy he did not imagine a really bad solo, but I digress.) Read the rest of this entry

Cross-Centered Worship: “The Gospel Song”


We have noticed a disturbing trend in the corporate worship songs of the church.  Perhaps you have too? It seems that we sing very little about the main point of Christianity. This is largely because the church wants to be more “sensitive” to those who are not Christians. With the best research in hand, we are told that non-Christians don’t really want to hear about sin and guilt and being accountable to a holy God. They also don’t want to hear about a Savior dying on a bloody cross for their sins.   To reach them, we are confidently told, we must eliminate these topics from our sermons and our songs.  Sadly, much of the Evangelical church has mistakenly signed on to this approach.  Read the rest of this entry

Free Prayer!


Free Prayer?

Of course prayer is free, we just thought it was a catchy title!   We all need prayer and sometimes we don’t have anyone to pray with.   Other times, we have lots of people to pray with but we want as many people praying for our situation as possible.  Whatever your situation is, we consider it a privilege and honor to pray for you.  We have a team of people who pray over every request daily.  So, let us know how we can pray for you.  You can submit your request in the comment section.  Let us know if you would like the request to be viewable by others (so that they can pray for you as well) or to be kept private. 

Our only request is that you  let us know how the Lord answers!

Following Him Together,

Jim

Staying On Message (2 Timothy 4:1-8)


Staying On Message 2 Timothy 4:1-8

An exposition of the Apostle Paul’s passionate final message to Timothy.  The church must continue to proclaim the message of The Cross even when people will not listen to it.   Given in October 2010 at a fellowship in Denver Colorado.  Speaker:  Jim Greer

Not For Itching Ears!


Not For Itching Ears is a blog dedicated to discussing the serious issues that exist within the American Evangelical church.  It is a  place for like minded people to share their thoughts on a host of issues relating to this subject.  Our opinion is that the church in America is in serious trouble and has lost its way.  If you believe that, then this will be an excellent forum for you.  Our goal is not to bash the church.  Rather, the goal is to bring people together to encourage one another and talk about solutions… Read the rest of this entry