Tuesday, August 22, 2017

6 Reasons Why the Church Is Not Singing

One of the great benefits of attending a Christian conference is undoubtedly the singing. Each year during the G3 Conference, I try to record some of the congregational singing just to file away and remember. This week as I listen through livestream to the T4G conference, it’s impressive to hear 10k people, mostly men, singing hymns of truth with passion and boldness. This past November, I attended the Metropolitan Tabernacle in London, and as the gathered church lifted voices of praise through a hymn to the Lord, it was impressive. There were no fancy lights, smoke machines, and minimal use of technology in the room. It was simply people singing praises to our God for the salvation that’s ours through the blood of His Son. So, why is the church not singing on Sunday?

One of the most important things a church does is sing the gospel. David penned these words in Psalm 9:11, “Sing praises to the Lord, who sits enthroned in Zion! Tell among the peoples his deeds!” Certainly David understood the importance, but sadly the church today doesn’t understand the importance of singing praise to the Lord of glory. At least that seems to be the case since the majority of evangelical church sanctuaries are quiet on the Lord’s day. Below I’ve suggested 6 reasons why the church is not singing. Read More
"Thanks for the good observations, particularly the emphasis on discipleship and historical home life practices. However, the section on repetition (7-11) is theologically uninformed. In many traditions repetition is intentional as a liturgical practice. In a Taize prayer service the repetition of the simple prayers, scriptures or liturgical songs serves a very specific purpose – to center the worshipper and allow her/him to become open to the work of the Holy Spirit in the moment. Likewise, praise choruses evolved from the Charismatic tradition of worship where the repetition is intentional, almost sacramental, as a way to usher in the presence and works of the Holy Spirit as an active part of worship. The real reason many congregations become distracted by the repeated choruses is because we have mixed our theologies with musical practices. No wonder it is confusing. Churches that do not share the theological positions of the charismatic tradition should be selective in the use of repetition. Most Protestants do not consider repetitive choruses as a preparatory means for the work of the Spirit in worship. Musical selection must be congruent with the theology being practiced." - John White

Repetition is a characteristic of many indigenous hymns and worship songs from around the world. Refrains or repetitive elements of a hymn or worship song also permit young children and other pre-literate individuals to participate in the singing. One of the earliest methods of singing the Psalms was responsorially: a cantor sung the verses of the Psalm and the congregation sung an antiphon or refrain after each verse or portion of verses.

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