Singing In Worship (Part 3)
In Ephesians 5:19 we read, "Speaking to one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord." Also we read in Colossians 3:16, "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching, and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord." Here we see in our singing, we are to speak, teach, and admonish one another. This is what God expects us to do when we sing.
But can a mechanical instrument of music speak, teach, or admonish as God wishes us to do when we sing? Of course it can not. A mechanical instrument of music cannot accomplish anything God has commanded when we sing to Him in worship. Here we see that when we sing, we are "to sing with grace in your hearts" and "make melody in your heart." The melody God wants is to come from the human heart and not from lifeless mechanical musical instruments. The mechanical instrument does not have a heart from which it can worship God.
In 1 Corinthians 14:15 we read, "I will sing with the spirit and I will sing with the understanding also." Not only does an instrument not have a heart, but it also does not have a spirit with which to understand. Then why use it? It is only because people like it.
It is sad to say but people are more interested in pleasing themselves, than pleasing God. They are not using the instrument to please God, because God has not authorized its use in worship to Him. God has only told us to sing. People like the sound of a piano, organ, or a band. They like to be entertained. This is what they want. They don’t really care what God has authorized. People are on very dangerous ground when they take this attitude. Please respect what God wants and has authorized in His word, because this is the only way we will be able to please Him and go to Heaven.
We read in 2 John 9, "Whosoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God." To go beyond the doctrine of Christ is to do that for which we have no authority. We can not practice instrumental music by the authority of Christ, because Christ has nowhere authorized it, and because of this we will not have God.
Some people say "I like instrumental music in worship." If this is the case then what "I like" becomes the authority and not God. When man becomes his own authority then each worshipper can introduce anything he likes with no regard to what God has said. It becomes: "I like it, I want it, and I am going to have it." Their feelings take precedence over everything else. What God says becomes meaningless when we allow our emotions and feelings to become our guide. Many people seem to think they are wiser than God and believe that instrumental music is more pleasing to God because it seems to be more pleasing to them. In Proverbs 28:26 we read, "He who trusts in his own heart is a fool." The Bible is our only authority in matters of religion; not our opinions, emotions, conscience, or human feelings.
In Colossians 3:16-17 we read, "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus." In verse 16 we are told to sing. In the very next verse we are told, "whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus." Notice it says to "do all". Everything we do in religion is to be done in the name of the Lord Jesus. To "do all in the name of the Lord Jesus" means that we must do everything by His authority. We can certainly sing by the authority of the Lord. But where would we go in the New Testament for authority for instrumental music in the worship of the church? It just isn’t there.
In Romans 10:17 we read, "Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of Christ." So we see that faith comes from the word of God. Then we see in Romans 14:23, "For whatever is not from faith is sin." Therefore if we believe and practice something religiously that is not authorized by the Bible it is sin. Worshipping in a manner not authorized in God's word is sinful. Worshipping God with the mechanical instrument of music is not authorized in the Bible so it is sinful. But do people really care?