I remember back in Haiti, every time the Carnival season is about to come out, new catchy tunes with hidden messages would make their ways on the air. Most radio stations would play them over and over. I have to say that many songs that the church have chosen to sing during worship service is nothing else but catchy tunes with another message having nothing to do with the gospel.
Some songs would have lines stating that the church is going to Canaan. What does that have to do with the gospel? We’re not going to Canaan. Our Canaan is Christ himself. We’re already in Canaan due to the fact that we’re in Christ. And of course, once you hear that you’re going to Canaan, in your mind you might start thinking about being flooded with material possessions or simply more money. So the congregation sings such songs not to rejoice in Christ, but be hopeful of material things that somehow should come their way.
We really need to revamp our worship songs. This is an issue for all churches, not just the ones in the Haitian Community.
Here’s a popular English Christian song: “Change my heart Oh God.” It sounds like a prayer, with only one problem. God changed our heart already in Christ. We don’t need our heart to be changed over and over again. But we need our mind to be renewed in Christ. Only the gospel sets our mind on the right course and keep us rejoicing of the things that we are guaranteed in Christ.
I just hope and pray that the church altogether would just sit down and listen to what they’re singing and see if it goes along with the message of the gospel.
Great tunes were used in King Saul’s days to give him relief from an evil spirit that God caused to harass him for disobedience. But you cannot forfeit the gospel message in exchange for great tunes alone, or in exchange for great tunes with a lie.
The music is to help us remember the words, like a particular taste or scent helps us remember a particular food.
Great music is not enough. Edifying words import a lot more than great music. Together they’re perfect.
But great music with words that doesn’t remind us of the gospel is like candy in the mouth of children (zero nutritional value)
There’s a lot more to a song than just the music. A song with great music along with a terrible message is nothing else but senseless noise.
“Let no unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building up the one in need and bringing grace to those who listen.” (Ephesians 4:29)
In our worship songs, are we praising God? Are we truly bringing to mind the work He has done through Christ?
We’re children of God by grace through faith in Christ, not King Saul. We don’t find relief in music alone, but in the truth that keeps our hope alive in Christ.
This is why I try to maintain a list of songs that truly reminds us of our hope in Christ. I like music. But I love words that remind me of my joy, my peace, my new life and love, Christ Jesus himself.