Why Do We Sing in Church?
On any given Sunday, if you walk into a Christian church, you will be invited to sing songs to and about God. Psalm 96:1 says, “Oh sing to the LORD a new song; sing to the LORD, all the earth!” This is one of many verses in the Bible that tell God’s people to worship Him by singing praises. One question that I often try to ask myself as a worship leader is “why?” Out of all of the ways that we worship God (music is not the only way we worship), why has He told us to sing and why has He told us this so often? Why does the Bible place such an emphasis on musical worship?
The reason that I believe that we are told to worship God by singing is because music and song express and stir emotion. God desires for every part of our being to be used to worship Him. Part of that includes our emotions. Jesus pointed out that we are to love God with all of our mind, but He also told us that we are to love God with all of our heart and soul as well (Matthew 22:37). There is something about music that can move us and stir us and be used to express ourselves like nothing else can. And God doesn’t just want to be worshiped just through our factual, head-knowledge of Him, but He wants the truth about Him to penetrate our heart and soul and overflow into passionate praise and worship. Singing does that.
So, this Sunday when the worship leader asks you to stand to your feet and join in and sing praises to the Lord, I hope that you will not do so out of routine or habit. I hope this will serve as a reminder of how God desires to be worshiped. I hope that this encourages you to let your worship be an expression of how the Gospel stirs your emotions. I hope you will be led to “Sing to the LORD, [and] bless His name.” (Psalm 96:2)