Greetings, friends and brethren, from your “fired-up” servant of the Lord. I am set for the defense of the gospel of Christ (Phil. 1:17) and addicted to the ministry of the saints (I Cor. 16:15.) I love God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, the Word which completely equips us, His one holy bride, and His merciful offer for salvation. This is who I work for and why I work. I labor for the food that does not perish (John 6:27).
I work both as a hymn writer and digital missionary for the Lord and His one church. There is no book or college course, and no formal training that can equip me for what it is that I do. Mine is a unique ministry.
I was raised in the Lord’s church but fell away and lived a selfish life in my 20’s. When I met, fell in love with and married my wife, I realized that if I loved her enough to marry her that I also needed to love her enough to point her to heaven. More precisely, I could not just point. I had to lead.
It was at age 33 that I began to get serious about my Christian walk. I continued to draw closer to God but it wasn’t until utilizing Facebook that I began to get serious. I know that sounds impossible. To start with, I began posting just scriptures, and then moved on to adding simple accompanying thoughts. Eventually, I began to regularly defend the truth online. Whenever I saw error, I was compelled to correct it.
I began teaching often. Eventually, I had a standing spot each Wednesday afternoon at 1:00 for live Bible studies online. This kept my mind focused constantly on spiritual matters. I was creating potent Christian teaching memes, frequently holding live Bible studies, writing articles, and eventually was able to marry my musical abilities to my defense of the gospel of Christ.
I like to say that I came out of the womb singing. I can’t remember a time that I didn’t sing constantly. I remember ladies in the local assembly telling me when I was a small child that they wished that they could sing like me. My elementary school music teacher always put me front and center to sing solos. I wrote my first song at age five about Snow White. And boy, did my sisters give me a hard time over that!
I ended up singing lead vocals for several bands in the 80s and 90s during my time away from God. I also continued to write. Currently, I have recorded somewhere in the neighborhood of 2000 songs. I estimate that around 125-175 of the songs recorded are hymns, with most being original.
One of the things that prompted me to write original a cappella hymns is the need for doctrinally sound teaching hymns. One purpose of our singing spiritual songs is to teach one another (Col. 3:16). I find that the Lord’s church is lacking in a good body of doctrinally specific teaching hymns. So one at a time, I’ve tackled many topics through my hymn writing. My favorite topic is salvation on Jesus’s terms. So, I have written many hymns that include God‘s plan for the salvation of man. These include, “Repent and Be Immersed into Christ,” “He That Believes and Is Baptized Will Be Saved,” and “Immersion Is Part of the Gospel of Christ.” I also teach about the one church of the Bible. For example, one of my hymns teaches that “Jesus Is Coming As Close As the Clouds”, which includes the lyric “The Faithful Will Meet Him in the Air.”
The main benefit for me as a hymn writer is that my mind stays focused on Christ and the job that He has given to all Christians. I have much scripture hidden in my heart due to writing so much from the scriptures into the teaching hymns. Other benefits include being able to teach the home congregation the songs I have written, continued study of His Word, and satisfaction of teaching and admonishing with the hymns that I have written.
The church also tells me that they are learning more of the Word from the hymns. One hymn is called “The Gospel Revealed to Us.” The opening lyric reads as “In first Corinthians fifteen one through four we see the gospel revealed to us.” Once these lyrics are committed to memory via the melody that they are tied to, it is hard to forget where the definition of the gospel is found. Christians have thanked me specifically for helping them to learn more of the Bible through the songs. This shows the wisdom of God as He designed us to learn this way.
There is a great need in the Lord’s church for doctrinally sound hymns with what I like to call “ungetoverable” lyrics. You cannot miss the message that my hymns teach. For instance: “Be baptized to receive forgiveness that you need” from my hymn entitled “Jesus is King.” I intend to continue to supply the church worldwide with a huge body of hymns written entirely by Christians. I will have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness (Ephesians 5:11). And that’s precisely what denominations are. I have written over 100 hymns at this point. Almost all of those were written in the past three years. I have a goal of 500 hymns by the year 2028 and I am ahead of schedule. At the same time, I am collecting hymns from other Christians as well. I hope to collect another 500 hymns written by other Christians by that 2028 goal. This will result in a 1,000-song hymnal to be distributed globally for free. It will contain only doctrinally accurate hymns, Many Christians have stepped up to meet the challenge.
There are many spiritual benefits from the singing of hymns. The Bible speaks of being “filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs” (Eph. 5:18-19). Singing truth in hymn form is not just for times of assembling with the saints. Instead, it is to keep our minds focused on the Master throughout our daily lives. We should be singing to Him, remembering Him, and glorifying His name as we go through this life.
Just as prayer keeps our minds focused on spiritual matters, so does singing. “Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thess. 5:16-18). “Is any among you afflicted? Let him pray. Is any merry? Let him sing psalms” (James 5:13). It’s crucial that we sing truth and with understanding, lest it be in vain. “What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also. I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also” (1 Cor. 14:15).
When we sing, we repeatedly drive home biblical truths. These biblical truths are tied to melody. This, by divine design, permanently implants these truths into our hearts. This is further evidence of the need for doctrinally accurate teaching in hymns. It is spiritually reckless to sing without understanding just as it is spiritually reckless to sing error.
A mind that is focused on Christ will sing often. A mind that sings often of Christ will be focused on Christ. God surely knew what He was doing when He blessed us with this form of worship. He designed us to remember scriptural truths tied to melody. In the same way that a melody instantly pops into your head when remembering the Alphabet Song, so does a melody when remembering “Jesus Loves Me.” These melodies help us remember biblical truths. This surely points to God’s wisdom and to His glory.
I was asked to describe the pitfalls of my work. There is but one that I can think of. What I do is technically new. I serve in so many capacities but I am not a located pulpit minister. I have sent out many financial support request letter packages. I have a letter from my elders who oversee my work and support me. I have a letter from Don Blackwell at GBN. The Gospel Broadcasting Network will be running my work soon. My time is donated to GBN as well. I am giving my hymns to the church worldwide for corporate a cappella worship. I am seeking to be supported for these works. While I have received several generous one-time support checks, my work is ongoing. Literally every day I work as a hymn writer. The only pitfall I find is that due to the unique nature of my work I am not being adequately supported financially. This will not deter my work. I am unmoved and fired up. I will continue to write hymns to glorify His name, edify His church, and educate the lost. I will continue traveling to teach the hymns at gospel singings and at gospel meetings. Again, I labor for the food that does not perish.
Contact Paul to receive free and ongoing 11-hymn volumes of his work, “The Fruit of Our Lips.”