Best Gospel Songs of All Time

It’s difficult to select the best gospel songs because the intent of gospel music is to minister to the soul of mankind. Gospel music is much more than melodies and harmonies. A gospel song may speak to one man’s soul, but not another.

We’ve chosen the best gospel songs of all time based upon their overall impact on the Christian Church and their ability to move the genre progressively forward.

What is Gospel Music?

For a complete description and chronology of modern gospel music, read our blog post on the history of gospel music.

Who is the greatest gospel singer of all time?

In gospel music circles, artists purposely try to avoid calling a certain singer “the best” because the nature and purpose of gospel music is to worship God in song. But one of the most revered gospel singers in history is Mahalia Jackson for her transformative gospel songs with Thomas Dorsey in the early days of gospel music.

What makes a song a gospel song?

Gospel songs are composed and performed for the specific purpose worship and praise to God. However, gospel songs also minister to people who don’t know God so they are not restricted to religious or ceremonial settings.

What is black gospel music called?

Traditional black gospel is music that is written to express either personal or a communal belief regarding African American Christian life, as well as (in terms of the varying music styles) to give a Christian alternative to mainstream secular music. It is a form of Christian music and a sub-genre of gospel music.

Top Gospel Songs

Goin’ Up Yonder

A gospel music favorite from the legendary Walter Hawkins.

Precious Lord (Take My Hand)

A classic gospel hymn by Aretha Franklin from the Album The Atlantic Albums Collection

Oh Happy Day

A classic gospel song by Edwin Hawkins from the Album Oh Happy Day: The Best Of The Edwin Hawkins Singers

I Love the Lord

A remake of a gospel classic by Whitney Houston from the Album The Preacher’s Wife

His Eye Is On the Sparrow

Mahalia Jackson sings her rendition of this gospel hymn from the Album The Essential Mahalia Jackson

He Saw the Best in Me

One of Marvin Sapp’s greatest hits from the Album Here I Am

He’s Able

Kirk Franklin’s hit gospel song from the Album Kirk Franklin and the Family

Alabaster Box

A somber gospel song by Cece Winans from the Album Alabaster Box

I Surrender All

Another great gospel song from Cece Winans shows why she is a gospel legend.

Peace in the Valley

Elvis Pressley’s rendition of this great gospel music.

Order My Steps

This song is performed by the GMWA Women of Worship from the Album Order My Steps-A Tribute To Gospel Legend Al Hobbs

Soon and Very Soon

Andrae Crouch has written dozens of gospel music’s most memorable melodies. This song is from the Album Platinum Praise Collection: Andrae Crouch

Shackles (Praise You)

Mary Mary ushered gospel music into the 21st century. This song is from the Album Thankful

God Favored Me

Pastor Hezekiah Walker is a legendary gospel singer and songwriter.

As Long As I Got King Jesus

This is a foot-stomping gospel song from Vickie Winans.

Jesus Be a Fence

This is Fred Hammond’s version of a gospel music classic from the Album Purpose By Design

I’ll Take You There

The Staple Singers are true staples in gospel music history. This hit song is from the Album Staple Singers Greatest Hits

Holy is the Lamb

Juanita Bynum’s rendition of an aged gospel tune from the Album More Passion

Blessed and Highly Favored

The Clark Sisters are gospel music royalty. This song features their famous vocal style from the Album Live: One Last Time

My Soul Has Been Anchored

This timeless gospel classic is performed by Douglas Miller from the Album Classic Gold: Unspeakable Joy

He’s An On-Time God

Dottie Peoples has spent a lifetime making timeless gospel music. This hit song comes from the Album On Time God

There is a Balm in Gilead

One of the most famous songs ever recorded by The Clark Sisters. This song is from the Album Beginnings

Cooling Water

The Williams Brothers have a catalog of memorable gospel songs. This one comes from the Album Duets

The Potter’s House

One of the most popular gospel songs by Tramaine Hawkins from the Album 20th Century Masters – The Millennium Collection: The Best Of Tramaine Hawkins

A Change Is Gonna Come

A Sam Cooke classic from the Album 30 Greatest Hits: Portrait of a Legend 1951-1964

I Can Go To God In Prayer

A gospel favorite by Albertina Walker.

Stir Up the Gift

Colorado Mass Choir’s classic gospel song from the Album Watch God Move

Hold My Mule

Pastor Shirley Caesar sings this stirring gospel song from the Album The Ultimate Collection

Mary Don’t You Weep

Aretha Franklin performs a traditional gospel song from the Album Amazing Grace: The Complete Recordings

Everything’s Gonna Be Alright

Gospel veteran, Al Green, sings his signature silky vocals over this gospel song from the Album Testify: The Best Of The A&M Years

I Give You Praise (feat. Richard Smallwood)

A great gospel song by Robert E. Person.

Walk in the Light

A timeless classic gospel song by Aretha Franklin from the Album One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism

Peace Be Still

Vanessa Bell Armstrong is a legend of gospel music. This song is from the Album Peace Be Still

Be Grateful

A timeless gospel song by Walter Hawkins from the Album Love Alive II

Healed

An unforgettable praise song by Donald Lawrence from the Album I Speak Life

Rain On Us

Legendary gospel singer, John P. Kee, produced this chart-topping gospel song from the Album The Essential John P. Kee

Total Praise

This award-winning gospel classic is performed by the legendary Richard Smallwood from the Album Richard Smallwood With Vision – The Praise & Worship Songs of Richard Smallwood

Tomorrow

The Winans revolutionized the male gospel group with this song from the Album Tomorrow

So Good to Know (The Savior)

A great song by gospel super-group, Commissioned, from the Album Will You Be Ready

Jesus is His Name

This transformative gospel music was performed by Ricky Dillard & The New Generation Chorale from the Album A Holy Ghost Take-Over

I Don’t Feel No Ways Tired

Performed by Mighty Clouds of Joy from the Album The Ultimate Collection

The Presence of the Lord Is Here

A gospel music classic by Byron Cage from the Album Byron Cage

You Brought the Sunshine

An awesome gospel song by The Clark Sisters from the Album You Brought The Sunshine / Unworthy

Changed

A spiritually redeeming song by Tramaine Hawkins from the Album All My Best To You

You Are Good

Israel & New Breed perform this high praise song from the Album Alive In South Africa

Take My Hand, Precious Lord

Mahalia Jackson sings Thomas A. Dorsey’s gospel classic from the Album Gospel Music Anthology (It Was Jesus)

How Great Thou Art

Clara Ward and The Clara Ward Singers from the Album Somebody Bigger Than You & I

He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands

Mahalia Jackson from the Album Gospel Music Anthology (Peace in the Valley)

He Was There All The Time

The amazing James Moore from the Album Live In Detroit (Live)

Shake the Devil Off

A classic gospel song by Dorothy Norwood

For Every Mountain (Live)

A great gospel choir song by Kurt Carr & The Kurt Carr Singers from the Album Setlist: The Very Best Of Kurt Carr & The Kurt Carr Singers

Lord Don’t Move That Mountain

Legendary gospel song by Inez Andrews from the Album The Soul Of Gospel

Oh How I Love Jesus

Rev. James Moore from the Album It Ain’t Over (Til God Says It’s Over)

Center Of My Joy

The Richard Smallwood Singers from the Album The Center Of My Joy

I’m Not Tired Yet

A historic gospel song by The Mississippi Mass Choir from the Album Not By Might, Nor By Power

Marvelous

Walter Hawkins & The Love Center Choir from the Album Singing Bishops Vol 2

Take Me Back

A timeless gospel song by Andrae Crouch from the Album Classic Gold: Best of Andrae: Andrae Crouch and the Disciples

Stand

Modern gospel music by Donnie McClurkin from the Album The Journey (Live)

The Blood Will Never Lose Its Power

Andrae Crouch & Disciples from the Album New Beginnings Gospel Series: Andrae Crouch

God Is

James Cleveland & The Southern California Community Choir from the Album It’s A New Day

Have You Got Good Religion

Rev. Clay Evans & The Fellowship Choir from the Album What He’s Done For Me

There Is No Way

Ricky Dillard & New G from the Album Unplugged… The Way Church Used To Be

Trouble Don’t Last Always

Rev. Timothy Wright from the Album I’m Glad About It

Sweeping Through the City

Shirley Caesar from the Album A-Men Golden Gospel Greats

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus

A classic gospel song by Reverend Timothy Wright

The Holy Place

Ricky Dillard & New G (New Generation Chorale) from the Album No Limit

I Feel Like Going On

Bishop Marvin Winans from the Album The Gospel Music Celebration, Pt.1: Tribute to Bishop G.E. Patterson

Room At The Cross/At The Cross

Rev. Clay Evans from the Album I’m Going Through

Jesus, I Love Calling Your Name

A gospel music classic by Shirley Caesar

Thank You

Walter Hawkins from the Album Singing Bishops 3

God Wants A Yes

James Hall Worship & Praise from the Album Trip Down Memory Lane

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