Music In Worship

Greg Wilbur from King’s Meadow opines on the role of music in worship.

From the time of David, music has played a prominent role in the worship of God. Participation in that worship is crucial for the health of the Church. Too often we are “worshiped at” as opposed to being led in corporate worship.

I am not the most musical of worshipers. I can read music enough to know whether to sing the next word higher or lower than the last, but chords and parts elude me. However, as an observer I have noticed the changes in musical worship that have happened in recent years.

First of all, the word “worship” itself has been changed to mean merely singing in church, as opposed to any of the other faculties of honoring God. This deserves an entire topic for itself.

I recall being in church as a child and opening a hymn book and singing with the rest of the ecclesia. The folks who could read the music did so, it was right there in the hymnal. Sometimes there was a piano for accompaniment, sometimes nothing. The voices of the people created music. It was nice.

My more recent memories are quite different. The lyrics of a song are projected on a big white screen, sans music. A band performs on stage, with a keyboardist, one or two guitarists, a bass guitarist, and a drummer. The lead singer has a microphone, connected along with all the electric instruments to massive amplifiers, thus drowning out the voices of the congregation.

It is more like a rock concert than a church service. This is not theecclesia of Christ worshiping, it is an audience being sung at. When did style and panache supersede reverence for God?

Death Of A Dictator

Saddam is gone. I remember in early 1991, 3rd Grade at Gause Elementary, we would post news clippings of the Gulf War on our bulletin board. We followed it closely. We nicknamed him “Saddam Insane”. We were pretty witty for eight-year-olds.

Now he has been convicted and executed by a court of his former subjects. This is a unique event, a former leader being legally executed by his own country. It does not happen very often, and no matter your view on the Iraq War, it is a good sign. The rule of law is ruling in Baghdad.

Saddam Hussein takes his place on the ash heap of history along with other dead dictators. He will now be nothing more than a memory, a photo in a textbook alongside Stalin, Hitler, Pol Pot, Mao Tse-tung, and others who murdered their own citizens.

People wonder why I so love the study of history. Look around, history is happening as we speak! There once was a time when all that we read in the history books was actually happening. This is that time, for all generations to come.