Empowered by the Spirit, music opens the heart so one may be convicted by the words of truth. Through the beauty of song the heart can be drawn into full surrender, to consecration, and to a commitment to obey God as Lord.
Truth set to music is more easily implanted within the heart and mind, providing us courage to face trials and shielding us from sin. Music can open the heart to receive God’s grace, overflowing the heart with gratitude, thanksgiving and praise. Hearts opened to the Spirit, overflowing with love, can truly worship God.
Music that works for our salvation doesn’t just happen. It’s important to train the gifts and organize the educated. Samuel, when establishing the schools of the prophets, set Sacred Music as one of the three required classes.1
David organized 4,000 Levites for temple worship to praise the Lord in music. He then set apart 228 special people, for the purpose of “prophesying” accompanied with harps, lyres and cymbals.2 All were trained and skilled in music for the Lord. So it would follow that today those with large or small musical gifts be trained, and the music of the church be organized, placing it in the hands of capable, spiritual people.
And as the ministers of the spoken word organize their thoughts and plans for the worship services, the ministers of music should organize the music to prepare for, support, and confirm the message of the spoken word.
Training the Gifts + Organization + Dedication to Christ = Beautiful Unified Worship.
How blessed we are when in our churches:
· Music adds beauty and a worshipful atmosphere as people enter the sanctuary.
· The special music is both relevant and inspiring.
· The offertory is artistic and uplifting.
· The congregation sings with spirit and understanding.
· Youth and children can participate in the specials, sharing their gifts in ministry and becoming known and appreciated by the congregation.
· Choir and ensemble members’ hearts become united one to another.
· The music has freshness as well as retaining spiritual legacy.
· The thoughts of the spoken word and the selections of music flow together with common threads, effectively praising God and edifying the congregation.
But to receive music’s greatest blessing, we must abide in Christ and He in us. Works accomplished under the direction and power of the Holy Spirit produce works of eternal value.
Singing is as much a part of worship as is prayer.3 But some may question if singing really has benefit. I suggest asking Moses and Miriam, when they led the Israelites in praise after the Lord threw the horse and rider into the sea. Ask David when he composed his psalms. Ask King Jehosaphat when his men’s choir led the army into battle as they watched the Lord defeat the enemy. Ask Paul and Silas when they sang in jail at Philippi. Ask the Reformers who sang while burning at the stake. Ask Jesus who sang a hymn as His last communication with His disciples before Gethsemene. Ask the saints who will sing their praises around God’s throne for eternity.
1. Ellen G. White, Patriarchs and Prophets, 593.
2. 1 Chronicles 23:2–5; 25:1–8.
3. White, Patriarchs and Prophets, 594.