I’ve read many articles from worship music blogs, analyzing and listening to the top-ranked worship songs of 2014, like this one from Worship Leader Magazine, There were many familiar faces and some new ones.  I was really impressed by how worship music has grown in variety over the years and thankful to be introduced to some new groups such as King’s Kaleidoscope, Beth Croft, Planetshakers (another powerhouse out of Australia), and Loud Harp.  I’m also very excited about what’s happening with The Liturgists, headed by the Gungors, and looking forward to more of their music, guided devotionals, and podcasts.

But something’s not quite right about these lists.  They don’t seem complete or comprehensive because they focus on one genre.

Maybe it’s just a matter of semantics, so then I tried to look up top lists under different terms, like “gospel music.”  The only list I really found was this one, by The Root.  Again, some really great songs but it just didn’t seem right.  

I was able to find one top 2014 list out there that had a bit more variety.  This was from a husband/wife musician duo from Stockholm, Sweden (of all places!) named Salt of the Sound.  I highly recommend you check out their cool lists and subscribe to their Spotify playlists because there’s a little more of a mix than othersI’ve seen.  Their music is great and meditative, too!

I wasn’t able to find any top lists under the term “multicultural worship,” the third phrase I thought of in Christian worship music, so if you run across any will you let me know?

When I think about the term “worship music,” I want it to reflect the whole Kingdom in its glory as much as possible, as it’s written in the Bible.  Revelations 7:9 (MSG) says: 

I looked again. I saw a huge crowd, too huge to count. Everyone was there—all nations and tribes, all races and languages. And they were standing, dressed in white robes and waving palm branches, standing before the Throne and the Lamb and heartily singing:

Salvation to our God on his Throne!
Salvation to the Lamb!

All who were standing around the Throne—Angels, Elders, Animals—fell on their faces before the Throne and worshiped God, singing:

Oh, Yes!
The blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving,
The honor and power and strength,
To our God forever and ever and ever!
Oh, Yes!

Isn’t that a beautiful picture?  I love that phrase, “heartily singing.”  I have to believe that the songs they were singing before the throne were more than: rock, hipster rock, anthemic rock, alternative pop/rock, pop, and electro-pop. 

It worries me to think that we are being conditioned to think of worship music as that which is done just by white males, or just by Christian rockers. I know that this script has often affected me, and caused me to even question my legitimacy as a worship leader. But we know that God’s vision goes far beyond that… it doesn’t exclude these voices in any way, but it certainly reaches out to expand to the borders of every cultural and people group. And then, and only then, will we ever start to see the future of Heaven on earth RIGHT NOW. Only then will we TOGETHER SING:

Oh, Yes!

The blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving,

The honor and power and strength,

To our God forever and ever and ever!

Oh, Yes!