“Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! -Psalm 150:6
Music is in the mind and heart of humans. God created music and He imbued it in the heart of the beings He made in His own image. This image includes the instinct to know, love, and make music. In Genesis 4 we are told of the various talents and professions of the earliest descendants of Adam and Eve’s son, Cain. “Jubal was the father of all those who play the lyre and pipe. Music was in the heart of God’s created beings from their very first days.
The collection of Psalms in the book that bears their name is the hymn/song book of the church from its early history. Music formed a core part of the praise of Almighty God. Among the many others, Psalm 150 sings in this final Psalm, “Praise Him with trumpet sound, praise Him with lute and harp! Praise Him with tambourine and dance; praise Him with strings and pipe! Praise Him with sounding cymbals; praise Him with loud clashing cymbals! Let everything that has breath praise the Lord! Praise the Lord! Everything, that is, that has breath to sing or to play a musical instrument! All have breath; they can sing even if they do not have talent or skill to play a musical instrument.
The Last Supper ends with Jesus and His disciples singing a hymn. Paul writes about being “filled with the Spirit, addressing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart… And the last book of the Bible, Revelation, has the saints in glory singing a new song, “Worthy are You to take the scroll and to open its seals… Job tells of “God, our Maker, giving songs [to us] in the night. The entire Bible recounts the music in men’s and women’s and children’s hearts. It is literally synonymous with bringing praise to God. Music is a natural instinct in your God-created heart and mind.
Some music by its words, or possibly by its dissonance, is certainly not praiseworthy. However, most music, especially as it correlates to the beauty, longings, and diversity of the creation, including the vicissitudes of man’s life on earth, inspires our hearts, minds, and memories, often motivating motion in our legs, feet, and toes. We may not all dance, but we sure can and do tap our feet to the beat of the melody.
Music is one more glorious reminder of the wonders of our Maker. Just as the majesty of the spectacular and diverse colors of the universe and especially of our own Earth reflect the nature and mind, the very being, of our gracious, creative God, so too does the whole role of music reflect His endless love for His children. When your toe is tapping to the beat, be reminded of the One who is the maker and inspiration of music and melody. Your God is great and greatly to be praised! Sing to Him as you make melody in your heart, all you who have breath.
“My soul, bear now your part, triumph in God above; with a well-tun-ed heart sing now the songs of love. You are His own, whose precious blood shed for your good His love made known.
(5th verse of Richard Baxter’s rendition of Psalm 148, “You Holy Angels Bright, 1672)
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