The Bible and Christian Rock Music
Many people believe that the Bible has nothing to say on the phenomenon of religious music. That music just wasn't way back then. But you know we can go back to that time "When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy." Job 38:7. What was that music like, in the pure atmosphere of heaven. We can go back even further than that, to the day when the greatest of all the skilled workers in heaven, the most highly trained was created. We know that there was one who was perfect, the highest of the created beings. One in whom "the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in the day that thou wast created." Eze 28:13. One who had such a musical quality in his voice that he directed the choirs in heaven. It was he who wrote the songs, he was the most talented. We also know that tabrets are a percussion instrument and so we know that his voice had a special rhythmic quality.
We then come down to the time a little later at a different place, the garden of Eden, and a serpent in a tree. But wait, was it just a serpent talking? Or was it a certain sound that captivated a woman as she listened to the first of the great infamous love ballads sung and directed especially for her. Here we hear the first alluring, captivating love song, and that tremendous power was focused on moving the emotions of his one person audience, and to incite rebellion in that heart. We are told in 'Story of the Redemption,' p32 that Satan utilized all of his musical talent merged with the very words of Jesus to touch and allure and to captivate the attention. There it is that sin as we know it began.
Here we have a great mystery, for there are two opposing forces in the world of music. Two spirits both talking as if they are from the same source, but one will be genuine and the other spurious. Will you be able to determine between the true and the false? For we know that not all that say "Lord, Lord," not all who say "we have sung about you," not all that you hear in the name of Lord is a safe path to follow. We have come to the time when clothed in the vestments of heaven the very thoughts of Lucifer are walking down the isles of your church, are seated in the sacred pews of your congregation and emitting sounds indigenous to the prince of darkness (2 Cor 11:14, 2 Thes 2:4). We are told in the Bible that this famous person who knows music better than all will be converted in the last days, after, the modern order of things. Are we ready for the conversion of Satan?
We have been taught as children of the antichrist's impersonation of Christ. Beware, for Satan and his emissaries will walk the street and people will prostrate themselves on the ground and shout 'Christ has come,' but we will know better, or will we? Because today he could be expressing his lofty sentiments, in beautiful language, the same language that the Savior uttered whilst on earth, in such a way that even the elect are viewing him as an angel of light, while marrying them to the decadent sounds of Egypt, to the rhythms of those who are in rebellion against God. And as he puts those two forces together in an amalgamation, even God's people sit back and wonder. "Should we or should we not receive this as from God?"
Oh, the holiness, the sentiments of these songs, the lifting qualities that make me feel warm and spiritually in tune. Beware; are you sure? You may be feasting yourselves within the shadow of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. We are living in the time when the transformation of the one who has been practicing for 6000 years, when his maturation has come of age. When his skills are being manifested in their full and final display. When he himself preaches about the soon return of Christ. Dare we as Christians judge anything by the heart which Jeremiah 17:9 says "is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked: who can know it?."
The Bible is full of expositions on sacred rock music. Its amazing but some people think that in the ancient days they didn't have music. But we know that music was an integral part of ancient cultures. We can go back to the Exodus and we are told in 1 Corinthians 10:11 that these things are written for us today. We can find recorded there the first of the great religious rock and roll concerts. And with what a spirit of selfless sacrifice did the church members prepare for the concert. We find there that the title of the theme for their camp meeting was "a feast to the Lord." (Exe 32:5) What could be more wonderful than the beautiful lyrics that speak about the deliverance from the power of Egypt. But you know, they brought in the tunes and the music of Egypt. By afternoon they had taken their clothes off in the name of God and sung to the music of Egypt. And we know what it sounded like, because music was an integral part of the Egyptian life. When Joshua, who had not been exposed to the music of Egypt heard it he thought it was "a noise of war in the camp." (Exe 32:17) But Moses recognized it, the music of Egypt. But wait, what does the music of today sound like? Are we hearing lyrics that speak about Jesus sung to the music of Egypt?
If we go down just a little further we can see that Israel did not learn the lesson. For we read in Leviticus 10:1-2 that the sons of Aaron died as a result of mixing the sacred with the profane. Thinking like Cain that, if you are worshipping God, that, in itself is sufficient and you may do it however it pleases you.
We wonder if Satan changes his disguise, but no, Satan always succeeds when he comes in unperceived. Did Balaam ever succeed in cursing Israel? We find the answer to this a little later when Balaam when back to Balak and said, "If you will invite some of the leadership of the church to enjoy some of your spiritually enriching, sacred music to the tune of some of your religious exercises, I believe that we could yet effect change in Israel." So Israel was invited to come into a sort of a miss America contest; only it was a miss Moab contest. They were asked to be a part of this eating and sacred music and enjoying the beautiful scenes that transpired. What could be wrong, since the organizer himself was a prophet of God, or so they thought. It was not long after the music was ingested that these men came back to the church with these new ideas of presenting the gospel; a better way, it was interesting to young people, they enjoyed it, the music spoke to their hearts unlike the church hymnal. We know the results, fornication and a great plague broke out, and in the midst of the demolition of the families one of the leadership of the church proudly walks in whilst committing adultery. The most riveting aspect of this story, is that this event occurs just before the entry into spiritual Canaan. We can ask ourselves, are our morals any higher? Are our divorce rates and lower? And what about our individual piety, especially amongst the youth ? Have we noticed a spirit of insubordination in the world and in the church since this music was introduced?
We can go down a little further still to the time of David (1 Chron 13,15). To a time when David was bringing up the ark with music and thanksgiving. Here we witness another great disaster, the death of Uzza (Num 4:15). They too thought that if you are singing about Jesus then nothing can be wrong. But we find when we study the scriptures that they were not worshipping God according to his will. Thankfully David realized his mistake and we read in the next chapter that "None ought to carry the ark of God but the Levites." You see it is not enough to be singing and praising God, you must do it only as God commands. But then, who is it that professes to be bringing up the ark today? Do we not claim to be bringing out the commandments of God and restoring them to their rightful place? Let us not forget that these things were written as shadows of things to come upon us who live in the last days.
Verily we are on enchanted ground. We are living in the time when Satan has come down with great wrath. He goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour, today he is in the crouching position and you must know that when he roars its because he already has his prey. Today he is walking back and forth in this congregation, yea, through his emissaries, he walks in every congregation. We are living in the time when Satan has come down with such angelic robes that even the saints discuss whether he should be allowed a place on the rostrum. We are living in the time when the very dance tunes of the day are being sung with Jesus' lyrics. It isn't Christ that is glorified but it is a smoke screen so that self can be glorified and deified and bear fruit. We are living in the most fascinating time of this world's history, because he knows he has but a short time.
Do you think he has changed his disguise? We note that Satan's favorite ploy is to use the very words of Jesus, but in his own arrangement. In Gen 3:1 we see that it was the very words of Jesus sung to Satan's music, and in Christ's temptation in the desert, whose words did Satan speak? We are told in 2 Corinthians 11 : 13-15 that Satan and his angels transform themselves into ministers and workers for Jesus. Yea, they will sing praises in Jesus name, and even perform miracles (Mark 13:22) to deceive and mystify the very elect. But wait, this mystery "doth already work." We are told in 2 Thessalonians 2 that he is going to sit in the church, in fact, the front pew, and his message and singing is going to have such power, it's going to be so beautiful and alluring that many will be deceived.
We ask ourselves is this true? Does the Bible really talk to us about Christian Rock music in the last days? We find in the scriptures such a picture of the role of religious rock music in the last days that is stupendous. We find that Babylon, that great harlot, that great religious system is in fornication with the world. It unites the sacred and the profane. It is the religion where, "I can be me and never die to self." We find that music is an integral part of its worship services (Dan 3:5). We find that Babylon is filled with "the voice of harpers and musicians, and pipers, and trumpeters," (Rev 18:22) and we are told to come out. We find, however, when we turn over to the book of Ezekiel, chapters eight and nine, that there will be a shaking and purification that will occur in the true church. The reason for this is because sadly the practices of Babylon have entered into Israel. We read that the church is worshipping both the sun (Ez 8:16) and Tammuz (Ez 8:14). Tammuz is a fitting symbol of a counterfeit Christ, yea even the antichrist. Tammuz was the chief deity of Babylon, he was supposedly born of a virgin (Ishtar), died and rose again on the third day. Verily the antichrist is one who says that you can serve God and still feed your carnal nature as well. The music and worship of Babylon is heard in Israel, that music which combines the sacred and the profane, that music which is an integral part of spiritual fornication. Oh, and haven't you noticed the relationship between rock music, sex and rebellion. You only need to look at the experiences of Israel, you only need to look at the phenomenon of rock music to know that it is completely immoral. It can be shown scientifically, physiologically, psychologically, and every which way, the effects of rock music. We are told by Paul in 2 Timothy 3:5 that we are living in the time when we will talk more and more about Jesus but remain in the carnal nature. We are living in the time when we call good things evil and evil things good (Isa. 5:20). We are living in the time when Babylon is going to so closely counterfeit the truth that we can't go by our feelings. Many are walking in the sparks of their own kindling, are we drinking from these broken cisterns or are we receiving the pure, refreshing water from the river of life. We are told by the Spirit of Prophesy (Testimonies vol.5) that the mark of the beast is primarily obtained by those who fall in love with the maxims and customs of the world. Are we falling in love with the rhythms and music of Egypt? With that music that purports to be religious, but which comes directly, directly, not even obliquely, from the throne of one who claims the prerogatives of Christ.
John tells us "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him." 1 John 2:15 Do we love the music and the rhythms of the world? Do we love it so much that we even bring it into the church? "Wherefore come out from among them and be ye separate, saith the Lord." 2 Cor 6:17. Are we separate? Have we come out, or are we following the world at ten paces? Are we retreating back towards Egypt as fast as we can go? "Oh, but it will bore the young people." Are we preparing our young people for the world through Christian rock music? We don't need to entertain them. What we need is the naked power of the Holy Spirit.
Oh for the symbolism in rock music, for there is symbolism in rock music. In fact, we are told that music is one of the most powerful mediums to influence minds. When you listen to music it becomes an experience and you are accountable for it. Do you know what the symbolism in rock music is all about? Do you understand what effect it is having upon your mind? For we are told that the body is the temple of the holy spirit (1 Cor 3:16) and if anybody defile this temple, him shall God destroy. We know for a certainty what the symbolism is, the links between rock music and spiritism and immorality are closer than many think. Don't you know that rebellion is the sin of witch craft? Every time that you hear the rhythms of Egypt, that symbolism is reinforced in your mind. Are we feeding the carnal nature? Are we strengthening the animal propensities? Or are allowing the Holy Spirit to mold us into the divine nature?
Oh, but we say, 'the Bible commands us to,' "Sing a new song unto the Lord", (Ps 40:3) none of these old fashioned, boring hymns which we sing again and again. Have we seen what it means to sing a new song? In Revelation we see that the saints will sing a new song (Rev 14:3), but if we look a little further (Rev 15:3) we find that this new song is none other than 3500 years old for it is the song of Moses and of the Lamb. And when the Bible says we are to dance, do we dance? Why not? May I suggest that when the Bible says that we are to make a loud noise yea even with drums, the same principles apply as those that do with regard to dancing.
When we learn to worship God, as he wishes to be worshipped, in the pure atmosphere of Heaven itself, the angels will be able to join in. We won't need the rhythms of Egypt. We won't need that music which excites us and makes us feel good while putting the conscience to sleep, and strengthening the carnal nature and inciting pride. When we worship Him in the beauty of holiness (1 Chr. 16:29, Ps 29:2) and with the reverence that God demands (Ps 96:9), when we realize that God doesn't require noise and shouting, for as Elijah learnt that God is in the still small voice, with he who is contrite and humble (Isa 57:15). We should worship God in spirit and in truth, not in the manifestations of the flesh (Phi 3:3, John 4:24). When we realize that there is safety only in the old paths, when we ask God to lead us in the way everlasting (Ps 139:24) and not in the ways which to a fool appear right in his own eyes (Prov 12:15). Then we will look to the Lord. Then will we hear Him say, "Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein." Jer 6:16.