Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs


The Verse of the Day for October 25, 2016 comes from Ephesians 5:19-20 in the New Living Translation:

singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts. And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

In Colossians 3:16-17 we find the mirror image of these verses which also speaks of “psalms and hymns and spiritual songs.” When we examine these two passages, we find a parallel connection in light of the context of “giving thanks to God.”

Colossians 3:16-17 (NLT):

16 Let the message about Christ, in all its richness, fill your lives. Teach and counsel each other with all the wisdom he gives. Sing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs to God with thankful hearts. 17 And whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father.

These two passages remind us that expressing our gratitude to God is to be connected to everything that we do: “Always giving thanks to God the Father for all things” with the exhortation reinforced that no matter what you do in word or deed, it is to be done with gratitude, giving thanks to God the Father through Christ.

The Word of God reveals that the giving of thanks is to be more than an occasional act of gratitude; it is to be an ongoing part of our lives. There is to be a continual overflow of gratitude to God, as we encourage ourselves through psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, as we allow the Word of God to dwell in us richly or to make itself at home in our hearts. Not only are we to edify and reassure ourselves, but we are to become a source of strength and encouragement for one another.

In the past, around the Thanksgiving holiday, I have posted my list of “Top Ten Thanksgiving Songs”: five were traditional hymns, and five were contemporary songs of praise and worship, all of which focus on being thankful.  In actuality the list could be viewed as a collection of “psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs.” Here is a brief definition of these terms plus a sampling of music from these three categories:


Psalms are consider songs of praise directed to God, as directed in the Book of Psalms. Today a number of the Psalms of David have been set to music, as illustrated in one of most popular songs of thanks from the Bible is “ I Will Enter His Gates with Thanksgiving /He Has Made Me Glad offered by Maranatha Music.


Hymns are described as formal and traditional songs often sung by a congregation in praise of God in a public worship setting. Out of the Protestant Reformation emerged songs written in the vernacular of the people. Here is a medley of three popular hymns of thanksgiving: “Come Ye Thankful People Come,” “We Gather Together,” and “For the Beauty of the Earth.”

Spiritual songs:

This category of songs are said to be inspired by the Holy Spirit, often based on a spiritual theme or teaching spiritual principles. Much of contemporary praise and worship can be placed in this category.

Here is a new song of gratitude “I’m Thankful” by Alexander Delgado:

Every day may we encourage ourselves and one another, “singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”

This message is reinforced in the Scripture Memory Song “Speak to One Another,” based on Ephesians 5:19-20, another reminder to be thankful:

One Response to “Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs”

  1. Georgia A. Rogers Says:

    Another wonderful sharing…

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