Reverberation

The Echoing Word: Leeman on why & how Christians sing

Following on from my recent post on worship as a Word ministry, I thought I’d share this snippet from Jonathan Leeman’s excellent book Reverberation:

 The Echoing Word

Christians in our churches sing because their new hearts can’t help but echo the Word that has given them life. Whether those songs were written in the sixteenth century or today, they should echo Scripture. If there is any place where God’s Word should literally reverberate, it should reverberate in the church’s songs. Remember, Scripture alone gives life. Therefore, a church’s songs should contain nothing more than the words, paraphrases, or ideas of Scripture.

And Christians sing together because it helps us to see that our hearts’ praises, confessions, and resolutions are shared. We’re not alone. Singing in the church, I believe, is about listening as much as it’s about singing. So Paul commands us to  “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord” (Eph. 5:19 NIV). If I’m to speak to others in song, I’m to listen to others as well.

And another:

Primarily, singing is a God-ordained means for echoing God’s Word back and forth to one another in a way that engages the whole person – heart, mind, affections, and will… churches should use music to train believers in the experience of sanctified, Word-driven emotions and affections.

It’s a lesson, in other words, to take home., The melodious reverberations of God’s Word in song should echo out the church doors and into our friendships and homes,. We should sing throughout the week.

But more than that, the reverberations of singing God’s Word, I dare say, should begin to reprogram the very way in the which a Christian experiences emotion and affection.

(Excerpts from pages 159-160)

What do you think?