Psalm 150 KJV
Praise ye the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary: praise him in the firmament of his power.
Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness.
Praise him with the sound of the trumpet: praise him with the psaltery and harp.
Praise him with the timbrel and dance: praise him with stringed instruments and organs.
Praise him upon the loud cymbals: praise him upon the high sounding cymbals.
Let every thing that hath breath praise the LORD. Praise ye the LORD.
When it comes to music the above Psalm is one of my favorite passages. It gives such a glorious picture of our worship to God. We praise Him in His sanctuary and in the whole firmament of His power - i.e. the whole world. We are to praise Him for His mighty acts and His greatness. With all that we are also suppose to praise Him with instruments. I think far too often we live life and do not praise the Lord, and even if we do praise the Lord we surely do not do it enough. My mom once shared a quote that someone had shared with her. It said something to the effect of, "If God took away everything you had except for what you thanked Him for yesterday, how much would you have?" I think this could apply to praise as well. If God took away everything that you have except for what you praised Him for, what would you have left?
This is rather funny, but when I write things like that I begin having a sort of conversation with myself. I thought, "Well that would work out nicely if I praised Him for all the good things and left out the bad things." As I was thinking about this, God showed me that the "bad" things are really good things in disguise and I am not looking for the big picture of life. He does great and mighty works in our lives through the bad things so therefore, I need to praise Him for the "bad" things as well as the good things.
Anyways, back to Psalm 150. I love this chapter because it reminds us not only to praise God, but that we can and should praise Him with instruments. Now I think it is very important not to let our instruments and performance take away from our praise of God, but I most assuredly think that musical abilities are a fantastic gift from above!
Some of the great reformers of old thought that worship and singing to God should only be done with human voices. I obviously don't believe this way but I think I understand their point. I think, from what I have read, that it is a matter of extremes. On one extreme, you have those that would allow music and instruments to take away from the worship of God, and on the other extreme you have those so conservative that they end up leaving out good things like instruments. While I think that it is very important to make sure that when we are worshipping God, we are truly worshipping God, I think we also need to be careful that we are not limiting worship. Psalm 150 tells us to praise Him with trumpets, psaltery, harps, timbrels, dancing, stringed instruments, organs and cymbals. Wow! That is a lot! God wants us to use our musical abilities to praise Him and bring glory and honor to His name.
The Lord has blessed me with several friends that are striving to use their musical talents to glorify Him and it is just so encouraging. Let's praise the Lord together for the wonderful gift of music because, you know, the very fact you can make sense at all of what you are doing when you play or sing your music is a great and mighty work of the Lord! So let us praise, praise, praise the Lord!
I would love to hear about your favorite musical passage. Drop a comment below and let me know what passage on music you like the best and why.