All effort to get the author of this article has proved abortive. But wherever it has come from, may God bless the writer.
I always ask myself, HOPE WE’RE STILL OPERATING WITH THE SPIRIT OF GOD IN THIS FOLD? I really figure it out because of my department in the fold. Many hymn books have been printed but errors are found in all. Why? Let me highlight some of them.
1. Translation: In the combined hymn book the latest, you can hardly match some Yoruba hymns with English.
2. Diversity in tune: Today, our hymns have countless tunes; there’s no universal tune. You become dumbfounded when you get to another parish because their tune differs from how you know it.
Thank God musicologists are now in the church. This should have helped to unify the hymns because they are now arranging them into pieces. However, it doesn’t work out. I guess the central choir should be given the mandate to arrange the hymns but since musicologists are too many, everybody does theirs.
I was surprised going through some of our hymns one day and I found that even the hymn 5 which was arranged by the central choir as a piece also has a slight difference from the one in the hymn book. This prompted some questions by my choristers which I couldn’t provide a possible answer to. Questions like: WHO ASSESSED THE HYMN BOOK? WHICH OF THE ONES DO WE ADOPT, THE PIECE OR THE HYMN BOOK?
3. Contradiction in Tonic-Solfas: Even the printed ones contradict. I ask myself one day, is there piracy in these hymn books why are they contradicting each other? Check the new hymn books which the hymns almost have solfa (the one with light blue cover and the one with a cream cover), check some of the solfas compare and contrast with the way we sing it.
4. Displacement in numbers: Imagine hymn 409 as hymn 408 in another hymn book. Why all these? To my surprise, this is in the new hymn book.
Why new hymn books when mistakes persist? I think there should be corrections of the old hymns in the new ones or is that not what we call UPGRADE? These are some of what chase members away, it causes boredom.
Another issue is to be singing what’s not in the hymn book with pride. For example, stanza 2 of hymn 682. It is,
MA SE IFE TI BABA
MA SE IFE TI BABA
but you’ll hear some singing BABA and OMO for the second. Also, hymn 906. It is,
GBADURA FUN MI BABA MA JE KI N SE O
GBADURA FUN MI BABA MA JE KI N SE O
but our people will first sing BABA and OMO for the second. Is it a must to follow BABA with OMO in everything? If then, why not include EMI MIMO to balance it?
Hymn 57 is another case study. I have been having issues with the last stanza which is E WOLE FUN. For a very long time, I hear people singing MO WOLE FUN. Where did you see it? Recently, this January, I showed a particular shepherd to be sure. He told me it is the service conductor that will be saying E WOLE FUN while the congregation will answer MO WOLE FUN. I don’t think his expression has any backup. Please I can be corrected.
Jesus said, you shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free. As a chorister, I know the truth because I find it in the hymn book and I think I should sing it the way it is. If I saw it and kept quiet, I am more or less a hypocrite and I am not doing the job given to me well. I will be punished for it. James 4:17 Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin.
Many times we substitute words in Psalms with ones, we blend them to our taste. This is very common in Psalms 20. You will hear some service conductor reading, KI OLUWA GBOHUN WA LOJO ONI, KI OLUWA GBOHUN WA LOJOKOJO, KI OLUWA GBOHUN WA LOJO GBOGBO, KI OLUWA GBOHUN WA LOJO IPONJU… Where did we get all these from? Does it mean if we do not read it the way it is in the Bible or how it’s written in the order of service, God will not hear us always? If we read it as THE LORD HEAR US IN THE DAY OF TROUBLE does it mean God will not hear us today and always?
Another funny thing we use to do is that we slot prayers when we read Psalms 24. When they get to verse 7: AND THE KING OF GLORY SHALL COME IN. You are will hear, HE SHOULD SANCTIFY US, HE SHOULD HEAL US…, one chapter of prayer is opened. The other chapter will be opened in verse 9. All these are not supposed to be, they still need to pray after reading the Psalms which is mandatory and most of the prayers will still be repeated. All are just to waste the time or to show off.
I believe the church is a spiritual church and the mode of worship is from the Holy Spirit. The three members’ prayers for Sunday service according to the order of service differs from evening services and morning services. Today, we have generalised it with that of Sunday service. I want to ask, who err, those who wrote the order of service or we? Probably they were not in spirit or they wrote from their instinct. Lol
There were one or two occasions I went for evening service, I was told to conduct the service. At the three members’ prayer, I directed it the way it is in the order of service before I knew it, they changed it. The first prayer is thanksgiving and God’s favour but when I was directing it the shepherd said, THE SERVICE CONDUCTOR HAVE PRAYED FOR THANKSGIVING, NO NEED AGAIN. Does it mean the spirit that directs the first person to still pray for thanksgiving is wrong? If it was a mistake, it should have been corrected immediately before now.
One thing I discovered is that we try to control the affair of the Holy Spirit with our carnal minds. We do not give room for his effectiveness. In this case, the Holy Spirit will move aside and watch since we have all it takes to function without him. Our too-know attitude has taken us this far, lack of submission to the control of the Holy Spirit.
I believe a place where the Holy Spirit is really active, people are supposed to experience the atmosphere filled with God’s glory and there should be orderliness and perfection. CCC is the church that’s supposed to experience God 24/7 because we claim it’s a spiritual church and John 4:24 said, “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship Him in spirit and truth.” Where’s the SPIRIT? Instead of spirit, FLESH. Where’s the TRUTH? Instead of truth, LIES.
The reason we don’t enjoy the flow of the Holy Spirit is that we cultivate the habit of burying our misdeeds and we really don’t want to let go. Proverbs 28:13 “He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy”. Even with the fact that the truth is revealed, some people will still disagree. They will claim what they are doing is right instead to turn from it and do the needful.
Let’s stop boasting that we worship in a spiritual church whereas the spirit is inactive. Other churches that don’t claim to be spiritual are organised and that’s where our members are running to and they are progressing. Our titles cannot take us anywhere but the practical aspect will do beyond our imaginations.
Jehovah, Jesus Christ, Holy Michael, our heavenly father, God of Oshoffa, you have descended a spirit-filled church for us to worship so that we can experience the secret things of the heavenly place. I pray that you grant us the heart that balances the worship in spirit and truth in the fold. May we not keep misbehaving thinking we are doing the right thing in Jesus’ name. Amen.”
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