Should Christians only listen to Christian songs?

This is a topic that has been bugging me for a few days and so I’ve been doing some research and praying about it. I’ll try to summarise a few points over here and would greatly appreciate your thoughts, even if you are not a follower of Christ.

 

Music’s influence.

It has been proven, through various studies, that music influences humans in both good and bad ways provoking instant and long-lasting effects in emotional, spiritual and physical ways. Music also has the power of affecting learning and memory. Researches indicate that music can have profound psychological effects not only on people but also on animals and plants.

In other words… IT DOES MATTER what type of music you’re listening to because IT DOES MAKE A DIFFERENCE!

 

Music in the Bible.

It is very interesting to learn about the history of music in the Bible and how music appears in the Bible, to learn how music originally was in the Biblical time. For those who’d like to read the references, here are the verses that have the word “music” in them and here and here are verses that have to do with music also.

Notice that music is always used as a way of praising God.

 

Contemporary Christian Music – CCM.

These are two interesting sites to read: A Biblical Theology of Music Applied to the Contemporary Music Styles Debate and Biblical Guidelines for Christian Music. Remember to read them critically, praying for the Lord’s confirmation of what is written on them before making up your mind on the subject. Basically, Christians have to beware about a few things when they listen to music, such as:

  • What does the lyric/message of the song glorify (God, man, partying)?
  • How do you feel when you listen to the song (joyful, miserable, powerful, angry)?
  • Does the song edify your spirit and bring you closer to God?
  • Are you making an idol of the musician or band? (God is a jealous God…)
  • Would Jesus listen to such a song? Or be happy you are listening to it?
  • Does it contain bad language? Or make you think about immoral things?
  • Which “part” of you enjoys the song (body, soul or spirit)?

 

I believe, therefore, that by abstaining from non-Christian music and contemporary Christian music that doesn’t praise the Lord, we are pleasing God and sanctifying ourselves – and therefore becoming more similar to Jesus Christ, who’s perfect. And even if the lyrics are Christian-like, we have to be careful about it’s tune too, for the spiritual world also uses notes in battle. (Be careful with rock, metal…) The Bible always refers to music as melody, not rhythm or beat.

It’s important to remember that our whole lives belong to Him and every aspect of it should give Him glory. Also, God was the one who invented music, ears to hear and vocal cords, so praising Him through songs was already part of His plan – in fact, we ought to do so! It is of no doubt that God has given the gift of music to some people but, unfortunately, most use their gift for praise of themselves, money, fame and other worldly things. Something else that is very interesting to think about is that the Bible never says music is to be used to reach out to the unsaved and bring them to Christ. In fact, it was never used that way in the Bible! I’m not saying music can’t bring people to Christ; I’m saying that is not God’s purpose for music.

 

Lord, forgive me for taking so long to realise these things. I am sorry that I do not always praise You through the music I hear, play and sing. Please help me to put what I’ve learnt into practice and give me more wisdom so that I may learn more about Your Kingdom. Amen.