Summary: Why sing? Isn’t singing just for "singers"? And what if I don’t like the songs? Do I have to sing anyway?
OPEN: I read the true story about a woman who bought her daughter a really nice Baby Grand Piano for her birthday. A few weeks later, one of her friends asked her how her daughter was doing.
“Oh,” she said, “I persuaded her to switch to a clarinet.”
“How come?” asked the friend.
“Well,” – she paused - “with a clarinet, she can’t sing.”
APPLY: Now, I know that when it comes to the issue of singing in worship there are usually two kinds of people.
1. There are people who just love to sing and they’ll sing all day long in worship,
2. And then there are others who’d just rather you gave them a clarinet.
When we get to Scripture, we find that God commands His people to sing and make music.
Here in Ephesians 5 we find that one of the ways we prepare our heart for the Spirit of God is: “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord” Ephesians 5:19
God has always wanted His people to sing. Ps 32:11 declares:
“Rejoice in the LORD and be glad, you righteous; SING, all you who are upright in heart!”
Psalm 105:1-4 proclaims:
“Give thanks to the LORD, call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done. SING to him, SING praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice. Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always.”
And Psalm 149:1-5 commands us:
“Praise the LORD. SING to the LORD a new song, his praise in the assembly of the saints. Let Israel rejoice in their Maker; let the people of Zion be glad in their King. Let them praise his name with dancing and MAKE MUSIC to him with tambourine and harp. For the LORD takes delight in his people; he crowns the humble with salvation. Let the saints rejoice in this honor and SING for joy on their beds.
So God wants His people to sing. But why? Why should we sing?
Well just from those three passages we’ve read out of the Psalms we find that God’s people sing because we are filled with joy and gladness.
• We sing for joy
• We sing His praises
• We sing to rejoice in the blessings God has given us.
We sing, we sing, we sing, we sing.
We sing because we serve a God who makes us joyful.
One of the most famous singers in Scripture was a shepherd boy named David. He grew up to be the King of Israel and is celebrated as the “Man After God’s Own Heart”. He could sing, and he could play a harp, and all of his music glorified God and rejoiced in His blessings.
David was a man after God’s own heart, and he cemented his relationship to God through his singing and playing music. Singing was the way David declared his joy in God.
He sang because he had a song.
ILLUS: Donald Hustead once wrote: “Somehow about 40% of churchgoers seem to have picked up the idea that ‘singing in church is for singers.’ The truth is that ‘singing is for believers.’
The relevant question is not, ‘Do you have a voice?’ but “Do you have a song?’”
(Leadership, Vol. 3 no. 1)
David sang because he had a song. And so should we.
God never says: “IF you can sing, sing”
God simply says – SING! Sing your joy!
One person once put it this way:
“Be more like a child today, for children sing whether they sound good or not."
Or as one little 3 year old girl sang: “I love you Lord and I life my NOISE”
God loves it when we sing to Him.
Because when we sing, we’re praising Him for how much joy He’s given us.
But there’s another reason why should we sing.
Music changes us. It transforms us.
Singing isn’t just a declaration of our joy… it has the power to MAKE us joyful.
ILLUS: Back in 1998, researchers found that music stimulates the auditory nerves and creates brain messages that ripple through the body, influencing muscle tone equilibrium and joint flexibility.
The human heartbeat is especially attuned to sound. As music changes in tempo and volume, it acts as a natural pacemaker. Our breathing slows down or speeds up along with the music.
A study at Michigan State University found that just 15 minutes of listening to music increases levels of immune chemicals that are vital to protect us against disease.
The release of cortisol (the “stress hormone”) dropped by up to 25%.
In addtion, they found that music has a direct effect on the function of the brain. It can slow down and equalize brain waves to create a meditative state or it can energize brain waves, quickening the thinking process and enhancing creativity