Christian music is always, has always been, and will likely always be on this earth a source of controversy and debate. While style, volume, tempo, and instrument choice are often debated, what sometimes gets neglected are the differences in message. What do the lyrics of traditional hymns tell us that contemporary Christian pop songs do not? And vice versa.
According to Relevant Magazine, statistical analyst Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight.com compared the lyrics hymns to contemporary Christian music to see how they stacked up when including "positive" words like "grace" and "life" and "negative" words like "sin" and "death."
Silver found that newer Christian songs contain far more "positive" words and put a vastly greater emphasis on grace than their much older counterparts, which put more focus on judgement and sin. Old hymns, while still more positive than negative in tone, also deal far more often with the sorrow and pain of sin.
If our music choice is a reflection of our Christian culture, what do these study results say about us?