Music, and today's Christian

The potential of music to reach souls today and How we as christians need to support the ministry of music both within our church and in the body of Christ in general.

Music is an expression of who we are, what we feel, and that which lies hidden in the recesses of our hearts. Few things can cut to the chase and touch a person at so fundamental a level, and even fewer can so thoroughly move a person in so effective and in so simple a manner. The power of a song is something we so often take for granted; we overlook the simplicity with which music can invoke such a vast panorama of complicated and intense emotions.
Music is the voice of the creative soul in all of us. As both makers of the music, and as recipients of the gift of music, musicians and listeners alike share in the joy, anger, or sadness; we both partake of the serious moments, and those contemplative moments, or those times when we have been motivated and our moods have been elevated out of whatever difficulties we have been enduring. This is an experience in which both the listener and the musician share, and it is one that involves our heart and soul at a very fundamental level.
Music expresses in the medium of sound that which we are unable to put into words,..... and is the language of the youth of America;
for through their music,
they express their hopes,
they express their dreams.
They cry through their music, and find voice to that which causes them to despair.
It is a joyous celebration
It is a means of communicating ideas; of delivering a message.
Through this language of music we as children of God can reach them with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Music is an area of ministry, as worship and as a sacrifice of praise to the Lord, and also as a means of reaching out to lost souls. How can we allow something which so thoroughly permeates the society in which our youth live and play to be so thoroughly controlled by satanic forces? How can we let this precious means to reach those who need Jesus go to unused?
Those of a more conservative mind set may criticize particular musical styles or genre's, but with all due respect to those who think in this manner, I must disagree on a few of their points of view. First of all, we sometimes forget that our purpose is not to save anyone, but rather to be the conduit through which the Lord can work, we present the message, it is God who works the change in people.
For when one says " I am of Paul", and another " I am of Apollos", are you not mere men? What then is Apollos? And what is Paul? Servants through whom you believed, even as the Lord gave opportunity to each one.
I planted, Apollos watered, but God was causing the growth,.............
..............,For we are God's fellow workers; you are God's field, God's building.
(1st Corinthians 3:4-6,9)
We are to reach them, by all means that are at our disposal. God is the One who shall do the actual work in their lives. It is He, and not us, who brings growth to that seed we plant in the hearts of others when they have heard the Gospel. It is simply not acceptable to allow so effective a means of communication as music to go untapped in our efforts to reach others with the gospel. To do so would be to close the door on an opportunity to witness to many individuals who desperately need to hear about the good news that Jesus has a better way for them, and that they can find true peace, as well as everlasting life with the Father. The news of Christ crucified must be resented to all. It is our duty, it is what we are here for.
Those who feel that certain types of "music" cannot glorify God regardless of lyrical content, overlook the fact that we are responsible before God for spreading his word to all mankind. We must reach them by all means possible. We have to put our personal dislikes and prejudices aside long enough to realize that not all people are going to tune in to a "traditional radio station" and listen to what they would consider "boring music" and just a bunch of "God talk".....
They will, however, listen to a Guardian or Petra CD, or that new song by DC Talk or Frankie Cutlass because the music itself draws them. It speaks to them, and having once heard the word, they are without excuse; And more often than not as God works his way in them we see a change in their lives. We again have to remember that although we may get the opportunity to water that seed of the word of God that has been sown in the heart of the listener, It is God that gives growth. I cannot stress this often enough, because too often we discard certain "watering vessels", or we push aside a particular means of sowing that seed, when we should recognize that it is not us, in our human wisdom, but God through His Holy Spirit who causes that seed of the word of God to grow and bring forth fruit.
because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
(1st Corinthians 1:25)
We may not find a method necessarily in line with our tastes, but God can use what we in our human wisdom consider to be foolishness to confound the wise.
We all too often try to second guess God,........
Silly, isn't it?

I would like to take this moment to make one point very clear. I have absolutely no problem with any form of music, crossover, contemporary, rock, rap, jazz, classical, or whatever. My personal musical preferences aside, what I insist on is solid biblical content.

! ! !The message must be clear ! ! !
Otherwise, what we are doing is the same as any other secular artist. We become entertainers, when what we should be doing is praising God. We become performers, rather than ministers in music. We end up entertaining our flesh, rather than ministering to the needs of others.
I will sing of lovingkindness and justice, To thee oh Lord, I will sing praises.
(Psalms 101:1)
(Of what does the psalmist sing?)

Sing to the Lord, bless His name; proclaim good tidings of His salvation from day to day.
(Psalms 96:2)
(What does the psalmist do when he sings?)

It is good to give thanks to the Lord, And to sing praises to Thy name, O Most High; To
(Psalms 92:1,2)

(Again, what is the purpose here?)

Before we proceed to the next page, I would like to say one last thing. We as christians, and as young people in particular, miss the point sometimes when it comes to the music we listen to. The single most powerfull means to present Christ to those around us is through the witness we give in our lives. Simply put, the life you live is a powerfull statement to others about what Jesus Christ has done for you, and in you. What better way to initiate a conversation, than through the music you listen to? Or what easier method is there to let them know that you are a child of God, than through the music they hear you listening to? I am not going to get into an argument over the evils of secular music, (there is no edification for anyone when such conversations become arguments) but I will say this: If you exclusively listen to the same secular music that they listen to, you are effectively ignoring a means through which you can witness to these people. You are taking the light which you are supposed to shine, and you are hiding it away.........