Thoughts on Music
“O come, let us sing to the LORD; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! Let us come into His presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to Him with songs of praise!”
Those are the words of the opening verses of Psalm 95. They set the tone for the challenge to sing, including songs of thanksgiving and songs of praise.
Let’s make, not just noise, but joyful noise as we worship God as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, proclaiming to Him our appreciation for who He is and what He has done, is doing, and will do and reminding ourselves how important the Lord is.
“O come, let us sing to the LORD.”
The challenge to sing praises is not only in the Old Testament. It is in the New Testament as well.
For instance, in Colossians 3:16 are these words. “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly.” That is an instruction for us to read and learn the Bible.
“Teach and admonish one another in all wisdom.” We are to learn, not only by ourselves, but also together. We are to help one another to grow in our Christian faith.
How? “And sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs [sing Bible verses, sing songs of praise to God, sing songs that teach us and others about the Lord] with thankfulness to God in your heart.”
Let’s sing Let’s continue to praise God. Let’s continue to learn about the Lord. Let’s be thankful.
In Psalm 98, there is a list of three reasons to sing.
“O sing to the LORD a new song.” Why? “For He has done marvelous things.”
For instance - here are three reasons to sing - the LORD has been “victorious.” We see that, for instance, in the Old Testament as He led His people into the Promised Land. In the New Testament, we see the Lord’s victory in how He overcame death and became the Savior of all who will accept Him.
Second, He has shown and continues to show His “steadfast love.”
Third, He has and does prove His “faithfulness.” Everything He has said in the Bible and through His answers to our prayers has happened or will happen. He does what He says.
Psalm 98 continues that all nature makes joyful noise to the LORD. “The seas, the floods, and the hills roar and clap and sing for joy.” If that is what all of nature does - since nature does all that - we are to join in with voices and instruments.
Each day, when we pray, let’s praise God for His victories, love, and faithfulness.
We know, from experience and from the Bible, that we can sing when we are happy. In fact, it seems especially easy to sing when things go well for us.
However, singing can also be done during difficult times of life. There are Biblical examples of that. For instance, let’s think of something reported in Acts 16.
Paul and Silas, two servants of the Lord, were in the city of Philippi. While there, they ministered, doing so by teaching and then baptizing those converted to acceptance of Jesus.
What happened in Philippi was good, but one day Paul and Silas came across a slave girl who was demon-possessed. She recognized Paul and Silas as servants of God who knew the way to salvation. She shouted that out for all to hear.
That might have been fine, except the girl kept following and kept shouting for several days. It got to the point Paul and Silas could not minister because of her shouting.
One day, Paul got fed up. He turned to the girl and said to the spirit, “I charge you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her,” which the spirit did.
That was a wonderful thing for the girl. However, it angered the girl’s owners because without the spirit - without the demon’s possession of her - she could no longer tell the future, which the evil spirit had allowed her to do. Her owners were angry because her predictions had been their source of income. Suddenly it was gone.
In their anger, the owners seized Paul and Silas, dragged them before the city’s rulers, and charged them with disturbing the city.
Apparently the rulers agreed with the charges. The rulers ordered Paul and Silas to be beaten with rods and to then be thrown into the city’s prison, where their feet were fastened into stocks.
What a horrible event for Paul and Silas. What a horrible day it turned out to be. But listen. Acts 16:25. “About midnight, Paul and Silas were praying - and singing hymns to God.”
What an amazing verse that is. What an important challenge to sing - to praise and teach and learn about God - even during very troubled times. To do that individually, as Paul and Silas did, and to do so with others. Another interesting phrase in Acts 16 is, “and the other prisoners in that jail that night were listening to them.” The other prisoners did not demand Paul and Silas be quiet. They did not threaten them to be quiet. The others listened. What a wonderful time of evangelism in Philippi’s prison that night.
By the way, God was so pleased with what Paul and Silas did that He worked it out for them to go free and the jailer was converted to faith in Christ. But not only on good days, but on difficult days as well - is this a bad day for whatever reason for you - let’s sing.
Psalm 92 begins, “It is good to give thanks to the LORD, to sing praises to Thy name, O Most High; to declare Your steadfast love in the morning and to declare Your faithfulness by night.” Let’s sing to the Lord morning and night - and at noontime and all times in between.
Lord, help us to sing at all times. You will be honored by that. We will be reminded of the Your goodness. Others will hear about You. What a wonderful combination of blessings. Thank You for the privilege of singing. Amen.
Posted on Sun, June 10, 2018
by George Cook