Whatever Happened

To

Christian Music?

By T. H. Parrow

I. Musical Forms Reflect Beliefs

   Music itself, apart from lyrics,
conveys a message to the listener.
Music, as such, is a very powerful
medium by which much is taught,
dramatized, and symbolized.   Music is
the medium that mirrors the soul of
the composer, singer, instrumentalist,
or listener, provided that such be
truthful to himself in that expression.
Therefore, if the soul be sensual then
such will be the music.   If the soul be
rebellious then the music will be revo-
lutionary.   If the soul be carnal then the
music will be fleshly.   If the soul be
Spiritually minded then the music will
be characterized by Godliness.   Each
kind of music teaches, dramatizes, and
symbolizes all of the components of
that particular philosophy expressed.
Music coupled with complementary
lyrics doubly intensifies its effects.
Music coupled with complementary
lyrics and dramatized by co-ordinate
visual sensations teaches a lesson not
soon nor easily forgotten.   Rock music
teaches the philosophy of revolution,
dramatizes revolution by the produc-
tions of its performers, and symboli-

izes revolution by the appearance
of its performers and followers.
Rock music is true to its philosophy,
rebellion and revolution.   Country-
Western music teaches the philosophy
of loose and easy livin'.   It is drama-
tized by the production of its perform-
ers, and symbolized by the appearance
and lifestyles of both performers and
followers.   Country-Western music is
true to its philosophy, eat, drink, and
be merry!   Each particular kind of
music, including lyrics and visual
sensations, runs true to form and
generally so do its followers.

II. The Standard Form Of
Christian Music

   Christian music used to teach the
doctrine of Christ as revealed in God's
Word.   Its musical notation character-
ized the attributes of God.   Its lyrics
echoed the Word of God, scripturally.
It was dramatized by the Godly
presentation of musicians whose daily
lives and private and public appear-
ance emulated true Godly attributes
as defined in God's Word.   It was
symbolized by its followers who also
derived their deportment and abso-
lutes for living from God's Word.   In
short, it ran true to form in all of its

facets, that form being God's blessed
and holy Word, the Bible.

III. The Corruption Of Christian Music

   What, however, has happened to
Christian music?   Christian music has
departed from following its true form.
No longer does Christian musical
notation attempt to characterize Godly
attributes, but it does characterize
sensual feelings through sensual
rhythm and harmony.   No longer do
Christian lyrics strongly and scriptur-
ally echo God's holy Word, but weakly
squeak of moral platitudes and vague,
subjective, pious feelings.   Its music-
ians derive their dramatization from
Rock musicians, Country-Western per-
formers, or Easy Listening artists, and
its symbolization is a mix-mash of
pseudo-religionists wallowing in a
good god, good devil, good man mire.
Such musical mush is a doleful
departure from anything that might be
scripturally termed "spiritual."

IV. The Inclusion Of Corrupted
Christian Music

   Many fundamentalists have become
enamoured with this pseudo-Christian
music because of its sensual fleshly
appeal, and defend its "spirituality"

with great vigor and apparent offense.
As music mirrors the soul of an
individual, so does this pseudo-Chris-
tian music reflect the carnal condition
of the souls and lives of such persons,
be they clergy or laity.
   Many pastors of fundamental
churches consistently fill their audi-
toriums and congregations with this
kind of religious musical mush.   Often
such pastors wonder about the quality
of spiritual growth in their church
members not recognizing that such
spiritually weak, carnal, sensual music
is one of their problems, personally
and ecclesiastically.

V. The Correction Of The Problem

   The Bible, that discarded standard
says, "For the flesh lusteth against the
Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh:
and these are contrary the one to the
other: so that ye cannot do the things
that ye would."
  (Gal. 5:17.)   Thus the
fleshly music used in many churches
today and absorbed daily by many
Christians hinders the true work of the
Holy Spirit.   That which appeals to the
flesh cannot also appeal to the Holy
Spirit!   "Let no corrupt communication
proceed out of your mouth, but that
which is good to the use of edifying,

that it may minister grace [not
sensuality] unto the hearers.   And
grieve not the holy Spirit of God,
whereby ye are sealed unto the day of
redemption."
  (Eph. 4:29-30.)
   Recognition of the fact that such
corrupted music is displeasing to God
will demand repentance from the
usage of it as well as repentance from
the carnal condition of the soul, that
condition which gave freedom to
embrace such music in the first place.
Then replacement must follow,
replacement of corrupted music with
true Christian music.   "Speaking to
yourselves in psalms and hymns and
spiritual songs, singing and making
melody in your heart to the Lord;"

(Ephesians 5:19.)

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