MUSIC: GOD’S CREATION AND GIFT
God created us to be instruments with the ability to sing and make music. Yes, the singing voice is an instrument! I refer to the voice as the only instrument created by God. Music, created by God, is purposed to praise and offer thanksgiving to God. Martin Luther considered music an important part of worship. There are numerous scriptures about music in both the old and new testaments of the bible.
Did you know Martin Luther was an accomplished musician and composer? He played the lute, (similar to todays’ acoustic guitar except its body is pear shaped and has 12 strings), the flute and had an impressive tenor voice. He composed an impressive number of vocal and instrumental music for the church. In fact, Luther felt music had such an important role in worship that men who wanted to be pastors in the church had to demonstrate competency in music before their acceptance into ministerial training.
One of my personal favorite books in the Old Testament is 2 Chronicles which records the reign of Solomon, the son of David and his building of a great temple, “House of the Lord,” and dedicated it to God. Chapter Five describes the riches in the finished “House of the Lord”, the Levites bringing the Ark of the Covenant to the temple, and of the ark’s placing in the holiest part of the temple, an inner sanctuary. The priests were the only ones allowed in the inner temple and they were the ones to carry the ark to its resting place in the “holiest of holies.” When the priests came out of the inner sanctuary, the Lord was praised with magnificent music:
“12 all the Levitical singers, Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun, their sons and kindred, arrayed in fine linen, with cymbals, harps, and lyres, stood east of the altar with one hundred twenty priests who were trumpeters. 13 It was the duty of the trumpeters and singers to make themselves heard in unison in praise and thanksgiving to the Lord, and when the song was raised, with trumpets and cymbals and other musical instruments, in praise to the Lord, “For he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever,” the house, the house of the Lord, …”
The Levites were given the privilege and obligation of serving in the temple including a number of Levites who were the musicians of the temple. The musicians were the most skilled among the Levites. Their music was to be of the highest quality..
The grandeur of the dedication ceremony to praise and give thanksgiving to God is beyond imagination: 120 priests, musicians wearing fine linens playing cymbals, harps and lyres or singing. The trumpeters and singers were instructed to perform in unison above all other Verse 13 includes the lyrics of the song of praise, “For he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever.” When the music was performed, the glory of the Lord filled the temple to the point the priests could not minister.
Did you know Mount Horeb has eight vocal ensembles? The list of the eight are: Joyful Noise Choir, Chancel Choir, Summer Choir, Funeral Choir, Cantata Choir, Bass Clef Chorale and the women’s Jacob’s Well. Providing there are a minimum of eleven participants, Jim Lindler will be “restarting” a Hand Bell ensemble.
Mount Horeb is blessed with a sizable number of members who are wonderful singers and instrumentalists whose service is fulfills an important role as part of Sunday and special worship services. Some choose to be a part of a single musical group and others utilize their musical gifts in several capacities. Our choirs welcome additional members. Mount Horeb’s music ministry must continue its vitality. Our church can keep this ministry healthy through the participation of its members. We who currently serve in one or more choirs appreciate our church family for their wonderful encouragement and support, yet we need more participants to serve as members in one or more of the eight choirs.
The Chancel Choir and the Joyful Noise Choir prepare music for Sundays and special services for the majority of the church year. On the other hand, there are other opportunities to serve on a seasonal or occasion basic, for example the Christmas Cantata choir, Bass Clef Chorale men’s choir,Jacob’s Well women’s choir and the summer choir. By the way, I cannot tell you how much the funeral choir is appreciated by the grieving family. The funeral choir is one of many examples out church is one of caring and love. We need more singers in our funeral choir. No rehearsals are needed for our funeral choir, just a willingness to serve by assisting the congregational hymn singing. Another one of our choirs does not have rehearsals. It is the Summer Choir. The Summer Choir meets thirty minutes before service to review the hymns as well as listen to how the readings, music and sermon connect to create a meaningful worship experience.
Would you pray-fully consider serving Mount Horeb by becoming an active member of one or more of our music ministry’s musical ensembles?
f you have any questions or want to be a part of Mount Horeb’s music ministry, talk to a choir member or contact me via email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone.
Last and not least, for those who currently serve in Mount Horeb’s music ministry, your dedication, active participation and faithfulness is greatly appreciated! I am blessed to serve as Mount Horeb’s music director and all of you are a blessing to me. Thank you for your prayers, support and participation.
Soli Deo Gloria!