Our Savior did not use any means which might enlist man’s lower nature on his side. When I have heard of large congregations gathered together by the music of a fine choir, I have remembered that the same thing is done at the opera house and the music-hall, and I have felt no joy. When we have heard of crowds enchanted by the sublime music of the pealing organ, I have seen in the fact rather a glorification of St. Cecilia than of Jesus Christ. Our Lord trusted in no measure or degree to the charms of music for the establishing his throne. He has not given to his disciples the slightest intimation that they are to employ the attractions of the concert room to promote the kingdom of heaven.
I find no rubric in Scripture commanding Paul to clothe himself in robes of blue, scarlet, or violet; neither do I find Peter commanded to wear a surplice, an alb, or a chasuble. The Holy Spirit has not cared even to hint at a surpliced choir, or at banners, processions, and processional hymns. Now, if our Lord had arranged a religion of fine shows, and pompous ceremonies, and gorgeous architecture, and enchanting, music, and bewitching incense, and the like, we could have comprehended its growth; but he is “a root out of a dry ground”, for he owes nothing to any of these.
Christianity has been infinitely hindered by the musical, the aesthetic, and the ceremonial devices of men, but it has never been advantaged by them, no, not a jot. The sensuous delights of sound and sight have always been enlisted on the side of error, but Christ has employed nobler and more spiritual agencies. Things which fascinate the senses are left to be the chosen instruments of Antichrist, but the gospel, disdaining Saul’s armor, goes forth in the natural simplicity of its own might, like David, with sling and stone. Our holy religion owes nothing whatever to any carnal means; so far as they are concerned, it is “a root out of a dry ground”.
Go stand by the gates of hell, and hear the damned entreat you to go to their father’s house and bid their brothers and sisters, and servants and masters not to come there. And then look Christ in the face, whose mercy you have professed to obey, and tell him whether you will join heart and soul and body and circumstances in the march to publish his mercy to the world.” William Booth
stealing the quote.
Jim, feel free to share. Not steal. Thanks for passing by
I am so sorry God has to see that.
Rightly said, Its despicable.
How many times have you heard, “They have great music.” It used to be a lot more important for my wife and I although we are musicians and bad music is distracting. But maybe that’s another subject. If God and His Word aren’t attractive to some then let it be.
Wow, what a sobering quote. I think I may use that in an upcoming post. I am a full time musician, and I have grown weary and sick of the emphasis the church places on music. I have raised these types of issues in my own blog. I am sorry to report that those who say something like this today, are immediately labeled as out of touch. But this is the prince of preachers speaking. It should be more difficult to ignore him.
How I wish we could change the course of the church on this matter. But, it appears that the American church has the gas pedal to the metal on this topic, with no deisre or ability to slow down!
I’m currently going through church history and I must say the irreverance to the sacred or to the holiness of God has been on a decline in the last century since liberalism watered down the fires of evangelicalism. The things we see happening in church today were unheard of two or three centuries ago. I will definitely visit your blog-thanks for passing by.