Tag Archives: glorify

Why We Don’t Have Contemporary Music In our Church


Why We Don’t Have Contemporary Music In our Church

By IndependentBaptist.com –

May 15, 2014

by Paul Alexander

The above question is often voiced in various ways: “Why do we still sing the old songs? Why not exchange the hymnals for Power Point choruses, or sing more and shorten the sermons? The “Contemporary Church Movement” blossomed in the 1980’s in an attempt to make the church more appealing to unchurched people. Crosses came down, hymns were replaced with catchy choruses, organs and pianos moved over (or out) for the band, song leaders were replaced with worship teams, jeans replaced suits, pulpits were out and lecterns in, and the mention of “hell” and “sin” became taboo. There is nothing intrinsically Biblical about displaying crosses or singing from hymnals, and we are certainly in favor of reaching people with the gospel. We must always ask, however, “What are the Bible principles involved?”, and “Where does this path ultimately lead?”

Christ’s church (His bride) must never seek to become like the world. When the Bible speaks of “the world” it is referring to the lifestyles, priorities, attitudes and appetites that are characteristic of unsaved people, and uncharacteristic of God. The Bible has nothing positive to say about this world to which many churches and Christians are trying to appeal, appease and conform.

1 John 2:15-17 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him….

James 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.

1 Corinthians 3:19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. (See also John 15:19; Galatians 6:14; Titus 2:12)

According to Rick Warren, the first step to starting a church is to survey the community to find out what people want in a church, then give it to them [The Purpose Driven Church, ch. 8]. It is insulting, however, for Christ’s bride to strive to become like and to be loved by the very world system that crucified Him. (James calls it “adultery”.) The core premise of the contemporary church and music movement is unBiblical because it promotes conformity of the church and Christians to the world rather than to the holy image of Christ.

The contemporary church movement is producing shallow, worldly Christians and churches. Bill Hybels, the father of the seeker sensitive movement, prominently confessed, “We made a mistake…. Our churches are a mile wide and an inch deep.” [2007 Leadership Summit, Willow Creek Community Church] If the movement’s own leaders do not like where their path has led, why should we travel it?

Attracting the lost to our church is not our Biblical purpose. The church is primarily for the building up of believers to go out into the world and reach lost people who are then brought in to be discipled and in turn sent out to win others. (Ephesians 4) Certainly there is no objection to inviting the unchurched, but we must not change the message or the music in order to be liked by lost people.

The kinds of music widely enjoyed by the world will not move our church (or children) toward godliness. Rick Warren wrote, “Once you have decided the style of music for your worship you have set the direction of your church in far more ways than you realize.” [The Purpose Driven Church, p. 280-281] This striking statement by the world’s foremost contemporary leader is absolutely true and should make us consider very carefully before changing our music. Do I want to direct our church toward the world, or away from it? According to Warren, the style of music we choose helps set the course. Romans 12:2 commands, “Be not conformed to this world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”

Much of the world’s modern music is a counterfeit of the beautiful music God created and cannot be used to worship and honor Him (i.e. “Christian rock”). “Our music cannot be like the music of the world, because our God is not like their gods. Most of the world’s music reflects the world’s ways, the world’s standards, the world’s attitudes, the world’s gods…. The popular music of the Western world is the music of seduction and suggestiveness, a musical counterpart of the immoral, lustful society that produces, sings, and enjoys it.” [- J. MacArthur, Commentary on Ephesians; For more on Biblical music and worship, request our sermon CD dated September 25 AM, 2011]

We must not dilute our message, ignore Bible principles, employ worship music that is dissonant, harsh, sensual and suggestive, or seek to make the church appealing to the appetites of ungodly people, even to reach them. The true gospel will never be attractive to the unsaved in general, nor will it ever make them feel comfortable. Paul declared, “The preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness….” (1 Corinthians 1:18)

by Paul Alexander

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Magnify the Lord


Magnify the Lord  

Psalm 34:1-10

O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together,” Psalm 34:3.

I love Sundays. One of my favorite things about Sundays is the singing. There is something reenergizing about joining together with the people of our church and praising God. When a group of people who really love the Lord lift up their voices in song together it is a beautiful sound. It is the sound of children, adults, men, women . . . everyone with one purpose glorifying God. It is not just the music I love. I love the praise. The actual purpose of the singing is what gets me going. To share in the worship of God with people of like faith is something we should never take for granted.

Today’s passage is an invitation for all people to join together in praise. King David invites us to “magnify the Lord” along with him. To magnify the Lord is to tell of His greatness. It is the act of giving glory to the One who deserves glory. To magnify God is to bring Him into full focus and make Him the center of attention.

In this psalm, David asked us to join in with him in magnifying the Lord. He said, “Magnify the Lord with me.” We can clearly see David’s desire to bring glory to God when reading this passage, but do we accept his invitation to join in on the worship? Even though David penned this psalm many years ago, can we actually join in with him in the praise he is giving to God with this song? Absolutely, we can. Even though David is not around on this earth anymore, the God for whom this psalm was written is alive and well.

Read Psalm 34:1-10 again, but this time read it for more than just information. Read it as praise to God. Accept David’s invitation. Join in on the magnifying of God by speaking this song directly to the Lord.

 

 

JUST ASKING

Will you join David in magnifying the Lord?

 

Nathan Rogers

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Glorify [God]


 

kāḇēḏ

 

In light of the wonder and weight of God’s names and titles, we are challenged to truly glorify Him and honor His names. David prayed in Psa_86:12, “I will praise thee, O Lord my God, with all my heart: and I will glorify thy name for evermore.” Glorify is kāḇēḏ (H3513), which is also translated “honour” (e.g., Pro_3:9; Pro_4:8) and “heavy,” speaking of His judgment (e.g., Isa_30:27).

 

It is that last translation, in fact, that makes this word interesting. This verb literally means “to be heavy or weighty.” We have all heard the expression that someone’s opinion “carries a lot of weight,” indicating that the person is important or influential. Similarly, when we refer to someone as a “heavyweight,” we mean that they possess power, prominence, or stature. God, therefore, is “heavy,” that is, powerful, and is worthy of honor, glory, respect, and obedience. How, then, can we glorify and honor God?

 

First, by never taking His name in vain (Exo_20:7; Lev_19:12; Deu_5:11). So common is the expression, “Oh, my God!” in our day that we have lost sight of how truly blasphemous it is, and I have heard even many Christians using it. Any such flippant, frivolous, or false statements do not honor God’s holy name. Our speech is to be “seasoned with salt” (Col_4:6), which among other things means “wholesome and palatable.”

 

Second, we honor God by praising His name. Psa_50:23 declares, “Whoso offereth praise glorifieth me.” By recalling and speaking God’s names and attributes, we praise and honor Him. We can thank and praise Him for His sovereignty, providence, holiness, justice, mercy, grace, and so much more. I pray we will address Him using His various names to bring Him further glory.

 

Third, we honor God by living up to His name. To be a “Christian” (Christianos, G5546, “of the party of Christ”) means we bear His name and must live up to it and never do anything to dishonor it. All God’s names, therefore, come into view through Christ, and we are to live up to each as we reflect the Son’s character (cf. Gal_5:22-23).

 

Scriptures for Study: Read the verses mentioned in today’s study and meditate on how you can better honor and glorify God.

 

 

 

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