Monday, November 16, 2015

Power and Holiness: The Spirituality of Christian praise of Mission Timothée, France


 

                                          Mission Timothée, Cholet city, France
 
*The original post was written by Sanae T in Japanese(here). Translated by Kinuko.

 
Sister Caroline is currently attending at Mission Timothée, a Bible-believing evangelical church in France. I had cherished the Christian hymns even before I was saved at the age of 20, and I love listening to the hymns in various languages in all over the world.

Through Kinuko and Caroline, I've come to know the Mission Timothée website, where we can listen to their original hymns. (Click Liste des chants, and you will see so many beautiful French hymns there.)

They are constantly updating the contents and I see how they acknowledge the importance of hymns and try to share them with non-Christians for outreach,too. I heard from Caroline that even some Korean churches asked them to come to teach their hymns!

Three characteristics
 
Regarding the Mission Timothée hymns, I found three distinct characteristics. 

1. Rendition by natural voices of the worshippers and the acoustic musical instruments

2. New but simple hymns, which are different from most of the CCM songs

3. Power and holiness. Hymns as testimonies of their faith.

Nowadays, modern electronic musical instruments and band performances have been introduced vigorously in many Western churches, and they use highly-modern CCM songs at their Sunday worship service. And we often see this phenomenon in bigger churches.
 
 
CCM worship service
 
The musical performance of Mission Timothée, on the other hand, is practiced by simple acoustic instruments and I see they try to arrange the play in such a way that the music would not stand out by itself. As pastor David Gutcher says; "the music supports the lyrics and not vice versa."

And unlike most of the CCM praise & worship (which normally one worship leader stands in the middle of the stage and sings almost like a soloist), in Mission Timothée, many worshippers sing together. In this way, I think we can avoid the temptation of self-glorification and we can cherish the "congregational" worship. As for the melody, too, in contrast to many of the gaudily-decorated and highly complicated CCM melodies, they use rather simple styles.

It seems to me that they are trying to avoid the error which modern CCM enterprise often makes; that is, to pursue musical elaboration excessively so as to conceal the poorness of its content and its spirituality.  

Another point which I noticed while watching their youtube is their simple, modest clothes. I also noticed that men in the church have short hairs while the women have long hairs. I think they do so because they have been taught the importance of biblical manhood and womanhood.

Conclusion

The Bible repeatedly exhorts us to sing new songs to the Lord. Out of the fear of becoming "worldly", some churches do not accept any new songs, which I think it rather hinders biblical praise. In this sense, I believe we can learn a lot from Mission Timothée which is creating new songs while preserving the solid biblical principles. Let us learn from their simple and spiritually rich hymns and songs!

I am going to attach some of their youtube videos.

   This song was based on John 13:34
  
 

 
 
 

 
 

 
 
 
Prayer
 
*Let us pray for our French brothers and sisters in Christ that the Lord give them strength and courage to proclaim the Gospel truth. Bible-believing French believers are very few and thus, extremely precious in His eyes. They are like stars of hope in France. Let us pray that they would be filled with His spirit and run the race of faith bravely until the end.
 
Chers frères et sœurs françaises en Christ. Nous sommes désolés pour la tragédie qui a eu lieu à Paris la semaine dernière. Nous voulons prier pour vous que Dieu vous donne la profonde consolation, l'encouragement et la force d'avancer. Tu n'es pas seul. Nous sommes une famille dans le Christ. de Sanae et Kinuko