It is not uncommon for true Christian to be distracted from worship by worship. Personal convictions on specific things are hold onto much stronger than the more general verses in Scripture that govern our church worship services.
Scripture does not give an annually updated list of accepted instruments. Scripture does not present us with approved service orders. Scripture does not have a blacklist of songs based on their origins and affiliations. Scripture does not entertain the same level of specificity that we sometimes hold dear. But, at the same time Scripture is not silent on worship. We cannot do as the individual with the strictest of convictions would do, but we also cannot do as the one with the most variety in tastes would do.
Here are some of the principles that ought to govern all church worship.
- Is in accordance with God Holy character. (Leviticus 10:3; Psalm 5:7; 99:5)
- Is fully understandable. (1 Corinthians 14:27-28)
- Is not for the sake of conformity to the world. (Romans 12:2)
- I always done orderly and properly. (1 Corinthians 14:40)
- Is performed with a variety of stringed, wind and percussion instrument. (Psalm 33:1-3; Psalm 150:3)
- Has a quiet internal (Ephesians 5:19) and louder external dynamic. (Psalm 33:3)
- Is not based off only one group’s preferences and personal convictions. (Romans 15:7)
- Includes a variety of song types (Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16)
This list reminds us that much of the specific choices that need to take place to honour these principles are choices that will vary from congregation to congregation. It is the elders who are responsible for applying great wisdom and maturity in the more specific decisions. This they ought to do knowing the Lord, the congregation, and the present expressions of worldliness that surround the congregation.
When your convictions of worship are more specific than the Scripture, be sure not to neglect worship during church worship!