At Southfork Country Church, we believe that our music service is only a part, but a very important part of the overall worship experience. When it comes to our music, we strive to keep it “authentic” and very real in content and the message it conveys to God and to his believers. Our music service is not just about the band. It’s about everyone participating and praising God as a congregation, in unity, love and in the Spirit. Below, we’d like to share with you 3 reasons for “Why We Sing” and why we believe singing is not only important to, but also ordained by God in His Word.
Reason 1: To Remember God’s Word Paul instructs us in Colossians 3:16: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.”Note how Paul emphasizes the importance of “the word of Christ” actually dwelling within us. Also note how we are to sing “Psalms, hymns and spiritual songs.” Finally, we are to sing those songs with thankfulness in our hearts. Thus, singing is meant to be a tool that helps us remember those words – God’s deeds, attributes, promises, and warnings. It would be natural to assume that we sing because music affects our emotions. But in congregational worship, music is a servant to words; in this case, the Word of God.
Note that there is no mention of one’s talent or ability to sing; just that we are all to sing, even if it might be a little “off-key”. Surely, some have a God-given talent for singing and playing instruments, and they play an important role in leading. But, it is about all of us singing together to our God. Gordon Fee once said, “Show me a church’s songs, and I’ll show you their theology”.If music is going to help us remember what we sing (the Word), we want to be careful that we’re singing biblically faithful lyrics. That’s why the inspired, timeless hymns and “message-driven” gospel songs are the basis of our music worship at Southfork.Reason
2: To Respond to God’s Grace Note how Paul emphasizes the importance of singing with
thankfulness in our hearts to God. God is not interested in mere lip service. It dishonors him. But he’s not looking for raw emotionalism either, that is, seeking emotion for its own sake. We sing to express thankfulness FOR something. That “something” is the word of Christ, which dwells in us richly as we sing.
John Piper made this comment:
“Music and singing are necessary to Christian faith and worship for the simple reason that the realities of God and Christ, creation and salvation, heaven and hell are so great that when they are known truly and felt duly, they demand more than discussion and analysis and description; they demand poetry and song and music. Singing is the Christian’s way of saying: God is so great that thinking will not suffice, there must be deep feeling; and talking will not suffice, there must be singing.”
Reason 3: To Reflect God’s GlorySinging reflects God’s glory in at least 3 ways. First, singing glorifies God by expressing the unityChrist died to bring to us. Gathering in the same room at one time expresses unity, and music both intensifies and demonstrates our appreciation of that unity. But music does not create unity, it is only a way of expressing unity that already exists. Only the Gospel unites us.Second, all three persons of the Trinity sing. First, God sings: “17 The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” (Zephaniah 3:17). Second, Jesus sings: “12 He says, “I will declare your name to my brothers and sisters; in the assembly I will sing your praises.” (Hebrews 2:12). Finally, the Holy Spirit sings through us when He fills our hearts: “18 Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, 19 speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord,” (Ephesians 5:18-19a).
Third, singing glorifies God because it anticipates, in a faint but genuine way, the song of heaven, a very musical place as described in Revelation. The living creatures and the elders sing a song in Rev. 5:9 celebrating the Lamb who was slain. They are eventually joined by every creature in heaven and earth. The 144,000 sing a new song before the throne in Rev. 14:1-3. Those who conquered the beast sing the song of Moses and the song of the Lamb in Rev. 15:3. Our songs on earth are a only a sweet foretaste of what is still to come in heaven.
Thank you for reading “Why We Sing”, and we encourage you to join us in “authentic” singing at SFCC!