Thursday, May 21, 2015

Spiritual Songs (Part 4 of 8)

We come to the crux of the problem.  Well meaning artists have unwittingly created a confusion between corporate and private worship.  When you gather an audience in a stadium or concert hall and sing, you create an environment that looks confusingly similar to corporate worship.  You then give people an experience that dwarfs their ordinary experience in corporate worship.  They understandably confuse the experiences and wonder why their ordinary church worship seems so sterile.

Now, I have no problem with these Christian artists producing music or holding concerts.  I do have a problem with many of the  consequences of these events.  These events have confused Christians with a false idea of corporate worship.  Many think these concert songs should migrate to corporate worship.  These talented artists are not performing easy-to-sing works.  These song are generally written for solo performance.

Fans of these events often place pressure on church leaders to replicate the concert experience within the church during corporate worship.  The outcome has been disastrous.  The concert experience has superseded truth.  The truth ought incite our emotions, but we find people taking the spiritual shortcut to emotions without depth.  Perhaps the artists intend tp minister spiritually, but more often than not, their performances inevitably depart from the strictures of corporate worship.

I am not saying that these artists create songs without truth.  They certainly repeat some wonderful truths or passages of scripture.  The question presented, is whether we ought to include them in worship.  Do they exhibit the excellence that corporate worship demands?  God calls us to discern the good from the best in corporate worship.  These songs may be good, but are they best?  Are they that expression from which we should expect the development of  spirituality, a spiritual experience arising from the best and fullest expression of the truth?

(Continued next week)

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