Biblical Singing

“I waited patiently for the LORD; and he inclined unto me, and heard my cry. He brought me up also out of an horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my goings. And he hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise unto our God: many shall see it, and fear, and shall trust in the LORD.”

Psalm 40:1-3

  1. God made your vocal cords and the ability to switch from talking to melodic resonating.
  2. The devil has always tried to ape the worship of Jehovah, and he has done so with music.
  3. The world obsesses about music, but its music at best is hopeless and/or meaningless.
  4. Musical is powerful (called the language of the soul), and the best example is David playing skillfully for King Saul to drive evil spirits away and refresh him (I Sam 16:14-23).
  5. The first song in the Bible is the song of Moses (Exodus 15:1-19), where Miriam led the women of Israel in dancing to these ferocious and glorious words of praise (Ex 15:20-21).
  6. The same song with some additions and modifications is also the last song (Rev 15:3-4).
  7. David, the man after God’s own heart, was God’s musician by numerous abilities, accomplishments, and influences: at the least, he wrote lyrics, organized choirs and orchestras, and invented musical instruments (Amos 6:5; I Chron 23:5; II Chr 29:26; etc.).
  8. He established constant singing in the house of the LORD (I Chr 6:31-33; 9:33; 16:36-43).
  9. Consider the intensity and variety when they moved the Ark the first time (I Chron 13:8).
  10. Consider moving it the second time (I Chron 15:16,19-22,24,27-28; I Chron 16:7,36-43).
  11. Consider the size of the choir David organized and arranged for singing (I Chron 23:5,30).
  12. Consider the emphasis in David’s psalms (Ps 47:6-7; 92:1; 104:33; 146:2; 147:1; etc., etc.).
  13. David loved new songs, for they are creative worship (Ps 33:2; 96:1; 98:1; 144:9; 149:1).
  14. David wanted skilful singing and playing, and he wanted it loud (Psalm 33:3; 98:4; 150:5).
  15. David wanted singing with understanding, just like Paul required (Ps 47:7; I Cor 14:14-15).
  16. Solomon dedicated the temple by his father David’s example (II Chron 5:11-14; 7:6; 8:14).
  17. They were still following David 340 (II Chr 29:25-30) and 440 years later (II Chron 35:15).
  18. The Son of David, our Lord Jesus Christ, sang as well, for it was prophesied of Him and fulfilled by Him (Psalm 22:22; Heb 2:12; Matt 26:30; Mark 14:26).
  19. We Gentiles are brought right beside David by Paul’s use of Psalm 18:49 in Romans 15:9.
  20. The most important part of singing is the words and the least important the musical skill of your singing, for the melody that counts most is the one in your heart (Eph 5:19; Col 3:16).
  21. The two most definitive verses about N.T. singing teach these things (Eph 5:19; Col 3:16):
    1. The doctrinal words are important by virtue of speaking, teaching, and admonishing.
    2. There are three kinds of lyrical compositions used – psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs.
    3. The musical component for the New Testament is singing, only singing, not playing.
    4. The basis and foundation of singing are abundant grace and Christ’s word and wisdom.
    5. The origin and source of the melody that matters most is a heart prepared and directed.
    6. The further and ultimate object and purpose is praise to the Lord as the goal of singing.
  22. When should you sing? The Bible says to sing psalms when you are merry (James 5:13).
  23. When should you sing? The Bible describes Paul singing when very afflicted (Acts 16:25).
  24. By considering both of the above, there is no time not to sing, so sing in spite of feelings or circumstances; the only effect either should have might be the kind of words or melody.
  25. The sacrifices of purified sons of Levi include singing His praise (Mal 3:3-4; Heb 13:15).
  26. Singing in church assemblies should be appreciated, esteemed, and participated in with great love and zeal for the Lord and saints. It is a congregational ordinance when together.
  27. Much more could be said, has been said, and shall be said. So grab a hymnal and sing!

For Further Study:

  1. Sermon Outline: Heart of David
  2. Web Study: Musical Instruments