In almost every Protestant church music will be an element of the service. For years church members have been arguing about what is considered “worship music.”
The typical argument is the young members want contemporary Christian music and the older ones want traditional. Of course, I see this topic different because I’m Messianic but I have still been affected by this argument and am a part of Christian circles.
My mom grew up in a conservative home going to a Bible church. My dad grew up in a home not nearly as conservative going to a Methodist church. The first time I remember hearing about this argument I was in elementary school and my mom broke down and bought my sister a Christian rock CD. Yes, we listened to the Christian radio stations in the car but those songs were mellow compared to Christian rock. My parents were almost embarrassed about having this CD. I remember thinking that I was a rebel for listening to this type of music. It was a huge matter to my mom because this type of music was not the biblical tradition that she grew up in. Eventually we had two CD’s, then three, within five years we had a stack of CD’S and went to their concerts.
Growing up I was ALWAYS asked,
“How can you worship to this?”
“How can you hear the lyrics?”
“Is this even a Christian song?”
Nine and a half out of ten times when I’ve been asked this, the other person had not wholeheartedly listened to the song; if they had, they most likely wouldn’t have been asking those questions.
Fast forward to high school. I had a friend who introduced me to Christian hip hop. I did not know that this existed in the first place. I believed that Toby Mac was the closest artist to Christian hip hop. It did not take long to realize that the lyrics had very sound doctrine and almost had a healing affect to it because the artists address the things that are hard to talk about and are never mentioned in the songs that are played on the Christian radio.
Here’s two small pieces of “Take Me As I Am” by Lecrae
“Will you take me as I am.
I know the way I’m living is wrong
But I can’t change on my own, trying to make it alone.
I wonder how could you love me when my life so ugly
But you came down and died for me
Will you take me as I am?
‘My whole life I’ve been working for Satan, while He fed lies to me
And now I’m hearing too much, trying to get a true touch
Of a love that can change me. I’m all screwed up.
Figure hell is what I deserve
But your word says we all fall short so I guess we all outta burn.
Teach me I wanna learn.
How you could save a wretch like me, before death says it’s my turn?
I think I finally understand,
No matter my past, you’ll still take me as I am”
I have been told by individuals that contemporary Christian music has too much of a beat. I personally don’t understand this. Unless I have missed something in the Bible, know where does the Bible have specific parameters of how music is to be. In music terms, God did not say music has to be: four four time and allegro. I’m willing to listen to these arguments, but please present God breathed scripture with it.
The next argument is that contemporary Christian music is worldly and is too close to rock and roll music. I must agree that some contemporary Christian music is hard to distinguish between being a Christian song or not, but not every song has that problem. Here’s a small part of a popular contemporary song by Hillsong United:
“Your will above all else.
My purpose remains
The art of losing myself in bringing you praise.
Everlasting, your light will shine when all else fades.
Never ending, your glory goes beyond all fame.
My heart and my soul
I give you control
Consume me from the inside out, Lord.
Let justice and praise
Become my embrace
To love you from the inside out.”
There is ultimately no right way to worship God. Some do it by singing hymns, Christian rock music, dancing, sign language, playimg instruments and other ways, as well. To those who believe that only singing hymns in church is the only right way, I ask you to try to be open to new styles of worship. Ultimately not everyone will be happy. There needs to be compromise on both sides.
Remember, that there are more important topics to be upset about. I truly believe that the enemy is trying to use this controversial topic to distract us from wholeheartedly worshipping God whether your congregation sings contemporary Christian, hymns or something in between. Psalms 150:1-6 💗