Ever wonder what Christian worship music has looked like over time? This creative video from David Wesley features him as a one-man a cappella choir doing brief renditions of worship songs sampled from the past 1,500 years! One of the most striking aspects of the video is just how timeless many of the songs are.
Christian Worship Through the Centuries
It’s fascinating to learn where various worship songs fall during different periods of history. “Be Thou My Vision,” while still a very popular hymn today, is actually the oldest Christian worship song Wesley sings, dating back to the year 560. One YouTube user commented, “That moment when you find out one of your favorite hymns is 1,500 years old.” Wesley responded to her, clarifying, “Just the poem the words are based on, alas.”
Wesley also performs “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God” (1529), “Praise to the Lord, the Almighty” (1668), and “On Christ the Solid Rock I Stand” (1863). The classic, “Amazing Grace” is from the year 1779.
Because Wesley performs a cappella versions of the songs, they all sound fairly formal, but several of his renditions stand out from the others. For example, “Victory in Jesus” (1939) and “Soon and Very Soon” (1978) are faster and more upbeat.
Wesley enters nostalgia territory with “Our God Is an Awesome God” (1988) and “Shout to the Lord (1993). One person commented, “As soon as we hit the 80’s and 90’s I got flashbacks to sitting in my living room, listening to my mom and dad lead worship in our little home based church. I love how even after all this time, I still know the lyrics by heart.”
And it’s also interesting to see which songs have so far come to define worship music in the 2000s. A few are “God of Wonders” (2000), “Oceans” (2012), and “Good, Good Father” (2014).
Wesley concludes his video by circling back to “Be Thou My Vision,” reminding us of the truth in another user’s comments: “Anyone else feel like these songs are timeless?! Some of them don’t feel this old, and some are literally ancient, and feel new. Interesting…just like Jesus, and His love for us.”