Though music sets a tone for worship, God’s Word should be the main focus in our church services.
Answers in Genesis
Are many churches out of tune with what their members really need and want? I believe they are. This article may seem a little controversial to some, but I ask you to think carefully about this topic.
With my position in the Answers in Genesis ministry, I’ve traveled extensively for over 40 years across many parts of the world, including the US. I’ve spoken in hundreds of churches from many different denominations across all 50 states. This opportunity has given me a bird’s-eye view of the trends and patterns in the Western church.
I’ve certainly heard many Christian leaders bemoan the trend of losing the younger generations from the church. AiG conducted research and published the eye-opening results in the popular book Already Gone. This book has influenced many Christian leaders to totally change the way they teach and conduct evangelism.
But I would have to say that another consistent trend that stands out to me is music. I personally believe one of the reasons music has become such a dominant feature in the church is that church leaders recognize they are losing coming generations and that the church is not impacting the culture as it used to. So they think more music and performance will attract these younger generations back to church. But based on my experience and the research we’ve conducted, I believe the church needs in-depth, relevant teaching on topics such as creation and Bible apologetics to answer skeptical questions and equip people to defend the faith.
Now, don’t get me wrong! I love music. In our younger years, my wife, Mally, and I often played piano and organ together in church. And sometimes Steve Hess and Southern Salvation—our resident singing group at the Ark Encounter—talk me into playing piano with them.
So I’m not against music! But I am alarmed by the consistent trends I’ve observed in a majority of churches. I recognize that what we like or dislike regarding music can be very subjective. But here is my personal philosophy of church music, based on my years of teaching in churches across the world and talking to people and listening to their feedback.
The bottom line is this: in all we do, we must make sure we are glorifying God, not man.
The bottom line is this: in all we do, we must make sure we are glorifying God, not man. Our church services should edify believers so they will be equipped in the Word to defend the Christian faith and be powerful witnesses for the Lord Jesus Christ. Don’t be out of tune!
Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Colossians 3:16