The Problem With Modern Church Music

The Following was twittered by @brentonbrown and is meant to show how lame/stupid/ill thought/etc criticism to modern worship music is.

The problem was that found I agreed, at least in part, with many of the objections.

So I’ve included the original posting along with some of my thoughts.

From an American newspaper in an article objecting to new trends in church music.
There are several reasons for opposing it.

1. It’s too new.
-This is actually a problem to be dealt with. How does someone who listens to mainstream top 40 connect with a worship team doing experimental music. Or a church that has done hymns for its entire church life make the jump to Top 40. Its not a reason not to do new songs or styles, but a issue that needs to be dealt with in love, service and humility.

2. It’s often worldly, even blasphemous.
-This charge makes the assumption that some styles of music are good and some styles of music are evil. This is not true but still something held in churches today.

3. The new Christian music is not as pleasant as the more established style.

-This is true. Rock music is most likely not pleasant to an 80 year old. Twang country is probably not pleasant to someone from the Urban Centers, and Metal is unpleasant to everyone accept folks like me who enjoy it. Worship leaders should know their audience.

4. Because there are so many new songs you can’t learn them all.

-You’ll never learn all the new songs. I don’ t know all the old songs. This objection smacks of the fear of change.

5. It put’s too much emphasis on instrumental music rather than Godly lyrics.

-I go both ways on this one.

A while back I was in a worship service of very hip and modern music and I realized that it had been minutes since I had sang, and I found that repeated in many of the songs. There is a difference between a performance concert where the band plays to the audience and a corporate time of worship in music when the band serves the people by leading them in song. Sadly too many talented musicians fail to make good worship leaders because they don’t see the difference.

On the flip side, there is far too much bad music in the church and a band playing well, being well practiced and sounding professional is far from a bad thing.

6. The new music creates disturbances making people act indecently and disorderly.

-if that’s happening then read I Corinthians.

7. The preceding generation got along perfectly without it.

-They also got along fine w/o flu shots and iphones… that being said, there is some wisdom in that statement that gets overlooked because of the shortsightedness/stupidity in that statement. Not everything the preceding generation did was dumb, and not every new idea is good.

8. It’s a money making scam.

-Boy it sure can be… (cough…CCLI… cough…)
9. And some of these new music upstarts are lewd and loose.

-To be fair it might seem that way to an older generation and in truth the artsy types seem to be more open to instability morally. But you know… so are the not artsy types so…

You might think this was written recently. But it was written by an American preacher, a church leader attacking Isaac Watts, the hymn writer who wrote the hymn ‘When I Survey The Wondrous Cross’ published in 1707.

Adam’s Final Thoughts:

Overall, I feel like it’s the same problem all over again.

-People confuse style with substance
-People put personal preferences over service and the needs of the many (both old and young are guilty of this)
-And they try to condense a nuanced subject like music in the church with cookie cutter charges and predictable answers.

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One thought on “The Problem With Modern Church Music

  1. Pingback: The Problem With Modern Church Music | CGCF Worship

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