Here are the rules:
1. Choose a hymn that you love to hate. It must be in a widely used and current hymn-book.
2. Say why.
3. Tag three people.
My first instinct would be to nominate O Canada, Star Spangled Banner, America the Beautiful etc, but even though they’re in the hymn books they’re not really hymns. (And it always cracks me up that the American patriotic songs end up in Canadian hymn books).
But, instead, Chuck and I are each going to nominate one.
I’ll Fly Away.
I love this song, I really do and it’s so upbeat, and I love how the Statler Brothers cover it (Johnny Cash‘s is pretty good too), but it’s a song full of blatant Platonic dualism.
And it’s not just the flying away chorus, but the second verse says:
When the shadows of this life have gone.
Like a bird from prison bars has flown
Can’t get more platonic than shadows and escaping birds.
They’ll Know We Are Christians By Our Love.
Decent song, except for the one line:
And we’ll guard each man’s dignity and save each man’s pride. (third verse)
We’re called to save each others’ pride?! Aren’t there certain rather prominent theological traditions that consider pride to be the root of all sin?