Recently I noticed a bunch of photos similar to the one above making the rounds on social media with the caption, “Rock Concert or Worship Service”? So I did a internet search and was amazed that immediately thousands of results came back, the first even cashed in on the title The Rock and Worship Roadshow.
The question for every TRUE Christian, is not about how I feel, it has to be what is it that God commands. I am convinced that the Infallible Holy Word of God commands us to Worship via the Regulative Principle of Worship and have written about it many times:
Getting back to our picture above, I am also convinced there is a vast difference between God honoring music in a worship service and a modern day Christian music concert. Some however believe the two have no place together in church, but I am not so sure.
Most everyone I know that supports the Regulative principle of worship, supports the signing of Psalms in church. Makes since since Psalms are in fact songs of sort. Well the sons of Korah, in writing Ps 47 seem to think that this involved making, wait for it, noise.
CONTEXT: Context is everything especially in what may be controversial subjects such as this. Here we offer once again Matthew Henry’s Commentary on this Chapter: The scope of this psalm is to stir us up to praise God, to stir up all people to do so; and, I. We are directed in what manner to do it, publicly, cheerfully, and intelligently (v. 1, 6, 7). II. We are furnished with matter for praise. 1. God’s majesty (v. 2). 2. His sovereign and universal dominion (v. 2, 7-9). 3. The great things he had done, and will do, for his people (v. 3-5). Many suppose that this psalm was penned upon occasion of the bringing up of the ark to Mount Zion which v. 5 seems to refer to (“God has gone up with a shout”);—but it looks further, to the ascension of Christ into the heavenly Zion, after he had finished his undertaking on earth, and to the setting up of his kingdom in the world, to which the heathen should become willing subjects. In singing this psalm we are to give honour to the exalted Redeemer, to rejoice in his exaltation, and to celebrate his praises, confessing that he is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Maybe you are not like me and have never been to a church worship service where you could not tell if it was a Rock Concert or Worship? You waited and waited for God’s word to be opened and expounded upon only to be greatly disappointed when all you got was “God loves you.” Or maybe you have sat in the pew and wondered if anyone dare shout Halleluiah, Glory or clap their hands. Oh, the singing was good but Psalm 47:1 was on permanent vacation.
Once again it is not about me but about God and His Word. It seems to me there needs to be a balance. God honoring and glorifying music where all God’s people can ‘clap their hands, shout to God with the voice of triumph in songs of joy’ along with solid biblical preaching.