Almost every year as Holy Week approaches, I make myself a playlist to walk my heart through Jesus’s passion and resurrection. Some years I’ve done this on YouTube and shared it. I’m doing that again this year, but I decided it would be good for my heart, and maybe edifying for others if a wrote a sentence or two about each song in the playlist.
Here is the link to the YouTube Playlist: Holy Week 2021
Here are my comments on each song. You can either switch back and forth between this post and the playlist, or just click on each song title.
The King He Comes – Ike Ndolo – Lyrics
I like the way this song ‘drives,’ and I like the way it reflects personally on the truth of the Triumphal entry.
Psalm 24 Keith & Kristyn Getty Lyrics
Psalm 24 says “Lift up your heads, O gates! And be lifted up, O ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. 8Who is this King of glory? The Lord, strong and mighty, the Lord, mighty in battle! 9Lift up your heads, O gates! And lift them up, O ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. 10Who is this King of glory? The Lord of hosts, he is the King of glory!”
Hosanna (Praise Is Rising) – Paul Baloche
This is one of the best of the many “Hosanna” songs.
Andrew Peterson: “Hosanna” (Resurrection Letters, Volume II)
Peterson does a wonderful job of bringing out the original meaning of the (Hebrew) word “Hosanna.” It means “O Lord, Save.” “I am tangled up in contradiction; I am strangled by my own two hands; I am hunted by the hounds of addiction: Hosanna.”
Ride On to Die Michael Card Lyrics
We think of the triumphal entry as joyful – and it was. But Michael Card would have us recognize that Jesus, who knew what was coming, must have been saddened by the fleeting nature of this entirely appropriate praise. Card wraps the triumphal entry in allusions to the tears that Jesus wept over Jerusalem.
Passover Us Andrew Peterson Lyrics
It’s appropriate during Holy Week to remember the rescue of Israel from slavery in Egypt, culminated by the Passover, which became a model for our redemption and the structure and setting for the Lord’s Supper. Peterson reminds us that we need this escape from judgment as well.
The Passover Song – Sean Carter and Caroline Cobb – Lyrics
Another Passover song. Caroline Cobb gradually builds the chorus of “nothing but the blood of Jesus,” into this song. The background video was shot on an incredible December day on Galveston Island when the lightest layers of sand were blowing in incredible patterns over the beach.
Andrew Peterson – “Deliver Us” [Feat. Scott Mulvahill] (Official Lyric Video)
This song is based on the cry of the slaves in Egypt, but Peterson reminds us that “Our enemy, our captor is no Pharaoh on the Nile. Our toil is neither mud nor brick nor sand. Our ankles bear no calluses from chain, yet Lord we’re bound. Imprisoned here we dwell in our own land. Deliver us!”
Remembrance – Matt Maher (Lyrics)
This song focuses our hearts on the Lord’s Supper. “Lord, we remember you, and remembrance leads us to worship. As we worship you, our worship leads to communion. We respond to your invitation. We remember you.”
How Beautiful-Paris Twila
I have long loved this song, especially for the incredible chiastic nature of it’s lyrics. You can see it here:How Beautiful Twila Paris Chiastic Structure
Sunday’s Comin’ | Igniter Media
These days we would call this ‘spoken word art.’ S. M. Lockridge just called it preachin’.
Stricken, Smitten, and Afflicted: Fernando Ortega
This song draws you into the crucifixion and helps you see that you cannot take what the Lord has done lightly.
Did Christ Over Sinners Weep – Indelible Grace
Another song that draws our hearts into the suffering of the Savior. The humorous thing about this video: I’m so culturally illiterate that some of the angel images are the (apparently evil) weeping angels from Doctor Who. Oops
My Song is Love Unknown Fernando Ortega Old Tune Lyrics
Fernando Ortega wrote two tunes for this old hymn, and though I like both, I like this one better.
Suffering Servant Dustin Kensrue Lyrics
This is one of the best contemporary settings of Isaiah 53 that I’ve heard.
What Wonderous Love Is This? Fernando Ortega
Fernando Ortega O Sacred Head Now Wounded
Fernando Ortega does a fantastic job with these old, deep hymns.
It Is Finished – An Animation
This song, with it’s animation by “Full of Eyes” is one of my favorites. “The sky turned black but darkness had not won!”
It Was Finished Upon That Cross – CityAlight (Lyrics)
This is brand new music for 2021 by CityAlight, and does a great job of giving the big picture of what Jesus accomplished on the cross.
Last Words (Tenebrae) – Andrew Peterson – Lyrics
I don’t even know what you call this. The seven “last words” of Christ appear in order while the previous words are still going on and they weave together, then disappear one by one. It’s fascinating and compelling.
God Rested- Andrew Peterson
I’m not sure anyone had done a “Holy Saturday” song before Andrew Peterson and Ben Shive produced this one. It’s genius. “The sun went down. The Sabbath faded. The holy day was done and all creation waited . . . .”
Andrew Peterson | His Heart Beats (Audio Video)
You have to listen to this song after the previous one, with a long dark pause in between.
Christ is Risen – Matt Maher – Lyrics
This has become a classic, traditional Easter song, at least for Trinity.
Christ the Lord is Risen Today
This is the most “choir-y” song on the playlist – but how can you not include this hymn?
He is Risen Caroline Cobb Lyrics
Caroline Cobbs begins to take us from the Resurrection to its implications. “The trumpet sounds and we are changed. Death itself will pass away.”
See What a Morning
Several songs in a row that just celebrate the reality of that glorious morning. No one does this kind of thing better than the Gettys.
Keith Green – The Victor (live)
An oldie but a goodie. Recorded live before Keith Green’s tragic death in 1982. Man I’m getting old – I remember the day that happened.
Jesus Is Alive – CityAlight (Lyrics)
Another great song by CityAlight. They are one of my most favorite new worship groups.
Andrew Peterson | Risen Indeed (Audio Video)
Andrew Peterson pictures the resurrection in terms of the dying seed and the growing seedling.
Easter Song 2nd Chapter of Acts Lyrics
Another classic from my youth. I’ve gotten a surprising number of comments on the simple animation of this lyric video.
That’s My King Dr. S.M. Lockridge
I love that listening to (and watching) this incredible preaching has become a tradition at Trinity.
Well Done Good and Faithful – Andrew Peterson – Lyrics
This song combines the prophetic truths of Psalm 22 with the image of God the Father saying to God the Son “Well done, good and faithful one.”
Upon a Life I Did Not Live (Lyrics) – Indelible Grace
This old hymn text emphasizes our complete reliance on the work of Jesus for us on the cross. “There both my life and death I read. My guilt and pardon there I see.”
Rise Up – Ben Shive
A number of years ago a family in our church suffered an unimaginable loss, and this song became one of my prayers for them. “If the thief had come to plunder when the children were alone; If he ravaged every daughter and murdered every son, would not the father see this? Would not his anger burn? And would he not repay the tyrant in the day of his return? Await, await the day of his return!”
Undone By Grace – Caitelen – Lyrics
Another great song by Caitelen, which I put to imagery by “Full of Eyes.” The Victor stands between eternal death and me. I know the One whose love brought low my burdened soul, to show me, ”once for all,” that I may see and taste, And fall into his hold, a child, undone by grace.”
High Noon – Andrew Peterson
This is one of the few lyric videos I’ve done that always makes me cry. Andrew’s lyrics somehow just perfectly fit the video imagery of “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.”
When Death Dies – Gungor
The defeat of death and the resurrection of Christ have implications for all of creation.
Andrew Peterson – Is He Worthy?
Last, but certainly not least. If you’ve listened to this whole playlist, you know He is worthy.