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 What does God say about musical instruments in church?

In the New Testament, absolutely nothing either way. Now, there is a lot we can learn from the Old Testament about the use of instruments as part of praise and worship. For instance, only a few instruments were ever used, and only by the Levites-it wasn't a free-for-all with whatever people wanted to do and play.

The instruments were harps, psalteries, cymbals, trumpets and cornets (1 Ch. 15:28). These are not the type of instruments used to create worldly dance music. Notice that there were no drums. These are instruments that provide good accompaniment to the human voice, because it is the human voice that enunciates the words of edification and praise.

As for the New Testament, we see nothing for or against the use of instruments, so really there would be liberty in their use, though again, looking at the constrained use in the temple, we can gain insight into their proper use, should a church decide to use them. And their use should be to enhance the message, not supplant it. Too often today music is understood to be 'worship'; often when a church advertises some sort of worship meeting, you can almost guarantee it will be an hour and a half of a 'worship team', meaning a rock group, performing. That's not worship, that's entertainment.  The main reason for a church meeting is not music, else we would see more in scripture addressing it-it is the preaching of the word of God, for edification of the church; it is reproving, rebuking, exhorting with all longsuffering and doctrine. It is for the perfecting of the saints for the work of God.

So music, and instruments, are a matter of liberty for each church to decide on their own, but its use should not be worldly, nor overwhelming.


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