A New Song for an Old World: Musical Thought in the Early Church

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Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing, 2007 - Music - 232 pages
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Even as worship wars in the church and music controversies in society at large continue to rage, many people do not realize that conflict over music goes back to the earliest Christians as they sought to live out the "new song" of their faith. In A New Song for an Old World Calvin Stapert challenges contemporary Christians to learn from the wisdom of the early church in the area of music.

Stapert draws parallels between the pagan cultures of the early Christian era and our own multicultural realities, enabling readers to comprehend the musical ideas of early Christian thinkers, from Clement and Tertullian to John Chrysostom and Augustine. Stapert's expert treatment of the attitudes of the early church toward psalms and hymns on the one hand, and pagan music on the other, is ideal for scholars of early Christianity, church musicians, and all Christians seeking an ancient yet relevant perspective on music in their worship and lives today.

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Contents

The Song of the Church in the New Testament
13
The Church in a Pagan Society
29
Musical Cosmology
42
Pagan Spectacles and Christian Households
60
Expansion and Persecution Triumph and Trouble
76
Administrator and Mystic
92
Christian Households
109
The Music of a Pagan World
131
Psalms and Hymns
149
ix
172
The Problems of Eloquence
180
9
184
What Can the Early Church
194
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

Calvin R. Stapert is professor emeritus of music at Calvin College, Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he taught for thirty-eight years, and a founding member of the Forum for Music and Christian Scholarship.

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