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There is no such thing as "Sacred Music", only music which can be used for sacred purposes dependent on elements such as culture, preference and assumed association.

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Before I became a Christian I was in a heavy metal band for many years my best friend was our drummer, I played on stage and have seen many people in the audience what I would consider hypnotized by the rhythm(drums/bass/rhythm guitar). So yea, trust me on this brother there is a type of hypnosis involved but not just in drums, and any rhythm instruments for that matter, it matters how they're played.
There is a concept that sacred music should have no beat and not be loud or entertaing. There are secular styles of music that meet this criteria so what difference does it make?
Sacred music is music dedicated to God, the instruments used are to be devoted to God. They are to be used only for the purpose of God. Pay attention to the lyrics and the rhythm of the music. Having beats or being loud I don't think automatically determine whether it's sacred or not. If in your culture certain instrument or beats are considered secular then its might b best not to used them at your church. If you are having a hard time connecting with God because of the beat, or because is loud then maybe its not sacred. The best thing to do is to pray about it and God will enlighten you.

well said, I agree to it.

 

Psalm 100 and 150 does not meet this criteria, Thank God!
There is not such thing as 'sacred music', just like there is not such thing as sacred clothes, sacred food etc These things are inanimate objects how they are used is more important. After all a key signature is a key signature is a key signature...it is not a sacred key signature.
I think I am coming to a conclusion, I am just waiting for the piano exposition...
Admittedly, I have struggled with the concept of "acceptable" music. For years, I have contemplated this topic, moving between different eras and observing from a historical standpoint the same fight we now face as it pertains to music.

The final conclusion I came to is found in

Phil 4: 8
Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

I Cor 6:20
For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's.

Isaiah 43:7,10
Even every one that is called by my name: for I have created him for my glory, I have formed him; yea, I have made him. Ye are my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

And I am sure there are several more texts that can be brought to the forefront.

Nonetheless, as I walk closer with the LORD, HE brought me to a point where I am now able to discern a little more clearly what is acceptable on the altar of sacrifice. A few principles I have kept and I will share them with you. As pertaining to "acceptable" music:

1) Any Christian music that brings your mind, heart, and everything closer to GOD is acceptable.

2) Any Christian music that is convicting in nature, which assists in your walk in this journey with CHRIST is acceptable.

3) Any Christian music that successfully accomplishes the goal of exalting, glorifying, thanking, and praising GOD is acceptable.

4) Essentially, any Christian music that fails to connect your heart and mind to GOD in a reverential, joyous, and trusting way is a waste of time.

See, my personal favorite was soul/R&B, jazz, sultry, and a few excitement (lol) music...and so, I just would linger with this kind of music for a long time, until the LORD wooed me to HIS side and showed me some things. I let those things drop by the wayside, of course, through GOD's strength, because it was rough!

Then, I started looking more at Christian music, and I almost fell into the idea that once it's Christian music, then it is 100% acceptable. But, I have come to realize that this is not the case. There are some Christian music that has no connection to GOD....there is barely any mention of GOD, and at times, it is merely implied. If one could take the same music and place it in a secular setting, it would fit.

At times, I thought I was safe with the slower music, until I started realizing that some of the music made me think of a romantic interest versus being with GOD, and I had to ask to help keep my mind focused on HIM. Rather than hearing the lyrics, I heard and imagined things that were contrary.

Then, I thought of my Caribbean culture, and thought, hey, why not yield to my natural inclinations, and GOD had to step in with that too, and remind me that the culture I should be concerned with is the "heavenly" culture, as I am an ambassador of the kingdom.

With that being said, it speaks to the relationship one has with GOD which will assist in the choice and the knowledge of what is "sacred" and acceptable to GOD. Only GOD can teach and show us all that which is acceptable, which points to a trusting relationship with HIM. As it is the duty of the HOLY SPIRIT to convict us and to lead us in the paths of righteousness if we hold and obey through faith that is wrought by love.

So, then I would say that the knowledge of sacred music only comes from a true knowledge of GOD. As you get to know HIM, HE will reveal that which is sacred and good.

At the end of the day, it is all about placing a big fat juicy smile on HIS face, which is to please HIM. JESUS said it best, in John 5:30, "I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me."

Hence, as we seek and search for GOD with all our heart, then we will know--Jer 29:13.

Therefore, seek, trust, and follow GOD, and HE will unveil the mystery behind the music and make it plain.

And yes, I still struggle, because I do love some of the jazz, classical, and some other stuff I can't think of, and in those cases, I ask GOD to help me figure it out! It is part of the lifetime process--sanctification!

That's my 2 cents!

May GOD bless you!

:o)
Thanks KC. You've given us some interesting things to ponder.
Still waiting for the piano exposition...

Hi Bro&Sis! 

Let me share the thoughts of one our Brother in other similar issue as follow:

"God can use anything to bring people in, and He will too...but I think it would be incorrect to assume that just because He uses something to bring someone in, that it is something he condones or encourages.  I don't have a direct answer for your myriad of questions, but I do think in many issues of spiritual and church life, we get caught up on, "does it provide me a blessing" without thinking about how it might negatively impact someone else. 

 

Charles Gounod (he's French) wrote a beautiful arrangement from Bach's original 'Ave Maria'.  Now many of you probably know Gounod and Bach are considered 'classical' composers, and that Ave Maria is a popular song in Catholicism for the Virgin Mary.  As a young instrumentalist, I played this once in my church for a prelude (without words), focusing on how beautiful the music was.  However, I failed to take into account what the song was about (even though I wasn't singing the words), and how it might affect others.  I found out later, that several newer Adventist Christians were conflicted that day as they heard a song about Mary, that reminded them of a faith and system of beliefs they had given up to follow Jesus and His truth.  The came to this new faith on a strong conviction and they believed that there should be no compromise, yet they were hearing the music to a song which amplifies the theology of Catholicism, which is contradictory to Biblical teachings.  Never again have I made this same specific mistake. 

 

A gentleman I study with, who was released from prison not so long ago after some decades of serving time, found Jesus in prison, and more so was baptized a few months ago.  He once said to me, it was hard for him to go to certain churches when the music reminded him of his past life, just with different words. 

 

I try to regularly remind myself as a praise team leader and musician that no matter what words I (or another) have replaced or are omitting altogether, music affects people, and my haste or personal preferences can affect others negatively, no different than my poor choice of words might be in a casual conversation. 

 

I suggest we remember that the words alone don't make it 'God' worthy...and while in most cases I would not go so far as to say that certain music is 'bad' or 'evil' or 'sinful', I would say that it's negative affects on others should be reason for us to consider finding something else that is worshipful and enjoyable to share in."

Blessings, 

Amazing reply bennett, absolutely amazing. Thanks, your words have mae me think.

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