Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by AndrewB93, Aug 10, 2015.
Singing itself is using the body, Grant. We cannot get so over the top on this purity angle.
Nowhere in scripture does God teach us to divorce ourselves from our God-given array of emotions in any behaviour---least of all in the worship and honour that HE DESERVES! His Spirit is present in our spirits and also in our souls---where our emotions and personality are located. Refusing to emote with love and joy and thankfulness and. simply the awe of God and who He is and what He's done is simply allowing the flesh to overrule.
Absolutely, and so is speaking. Both singing and speaking convey something profitable and edifying, which is why they're sanctioned and encouraged in the assembly.
John writes "We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren." (1 John 3:14). Is this emotion? Natural amiability? Not at all, otherwise it would be no indication that we've passed from death to life. It isn't a matter of suppressing something - we have something infinitely better than natural feelings and emotions, we have the Holy Spirit.
"But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him; and he cannot know them because they are spiritually discerned; but the spiritual discerns all things, and he is discerned of no one. For who has known the mind of the Lord, who shall instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ." (1 Corinthians 2:14-16).
your post# 347 caught my attention, I happen to agree: we seek, actively, diligently...
Talking about the Paul’s letter to the Corinthians…
I will use a non-Christian tradition story/example….
The blind men conclusions are all valid and consistent:
The one who were exposed to the trunk gave a consistent, valid exposition….
…. while the one who is exposed to the tusk gave a consistent, valid exposition… and so on….
All of them are fully persuaded with what they saw or say felt….
It is good you are fully persuaded, and am not going to persuade you other wise : )
And am fully persuaded as well : )
Pauls' letter to the Corinthians is not a reminder to “not to judge” but rather, of “accepting one another" as I see it...
There is boundary on this: there are things that are NOT to be compromised….
I have no trouble with Calvinism and Armianism…. I can accept both as valid and consistent…
Am for Paul, am for Apollos?... i don't think so: ….. ALL ARE OURS…..
1 Corinthians 3New King James Version (NKJV)
21 Therefore let no one boast in men. For all things are yours: 22 whether Paul or Apollos or Cephas, or the world or life or death, or things present or things to come—all are yours. 23 And you are Christ’s, and Christ is God’s.
In one's fervor to divorce oneself from emotion in worship and praise, one has compartmentalized oneself in a way that God does not require. Emotions are not the flesh, but they are a part of how we are created...in the image of God. We are tripartite creations---body, soul and spirit, the soul being the part which contains the emotions, the will, and the mind, and the personality, which, under the control of the Holy Spirit, are a blessing to God and to others and to ourselves! Emotions are not to be denied in any way in any part of our serving God.
I can not believe that this conversation is still going on!!!
The story of the blind men and the elephant, that's a good one. I hadn't heard it before I came to the Forum. Yes, that's what tends to happen with us. But believers shouldn't be blind. We should be able to see clearly the whole scope of the truth, not be satisfied with being familiar with - or even expert on - one part of it. The problem those blind men had was that they didn't follow on from their first impression, they didn't pursue the matter and see how it connected with everything else - and so they had a wrong idea of the whole thing. There was one elephant, just as there's one truth - we need to see the scope of it.
I'll tread carefully here, because I've already been cautioned for referring to the 'C' and the 'A'. But, both these positions are wrong, because they don't take into account the whole scope of the truth. It's exactly the problem of the blind men and the elephant - some truth is taken up, but not the whole of the truth, and the result is a false idea. The truth has to be taken up as a whole, otherwise so much is lost.
Ah yeah, I think that non-Christian origin of as story, "the blind men”, is not a good one to describe what am trying to say, it follows different set of rules towards “philosophical" "truth” and that will lead us nowhere…
Another story then, a Christian one:
Those “who eat meat” and those “those who eat only vegetables”
What is the point, or the “spirit” of what Paul is trying to convey in Romans 14:
for “those who eat meat” to continuously persuade “those who eat only vegetables” to eat meat?
or to “receive one another”
Or, is that applicable to compare to the topic: “those who accept musical instrument “ and “those who not accept musical instrument” during worship of an assembly?
For me, it comes down to "Why did God create us?" Clearly, we are to increase in number, use the gifts He gave us to create and help each other, worship Him and learn to love as He does, among other things. So God must love to see us create just as He creates since we are in His image. Albeit that we create using what He supplies, still the concept is there.
Paul conveys that we have these gifts to use for the edification of the body of believers.
1 Corinthians 12:
4 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5 There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. 6 And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. 7 But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: 8 for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills.
This list, of course, is not all the gifts we have been given, for if they were all listed the Bible may double in size. Suffice it to say, we have been given diversities of gifts, but all from the same Spirit. Who are we to say what gifts are permitted in worship? If our heart is right, God glories in what we do when we worship Him.
1 Corinthians 10: 26 for “the earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness.”
This is from Psalms 24:1 The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness, The world and those who dwell therein.
The theme at the end of 1 Corinthians 10 speaks of how we should not push people away or offend them, in so doing, discouraging them from seeking God and being saved.
1 Cor 10: 24 Let no one seek his own, but each one the other’s well-being.
31 Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 32 Give no offense, either to the Jews or to the Greeks or to the church of God, 33 just as I also please all men in all things, not seeking my own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved.
If the community around you loves music, then edify them with it. If they are edified by a lack of music, then do that.
Romans 10:14 How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? 15 And how shall they preach unless they are sent?
How can they hear a preacher unless they are willing to hear? And how will they be willing to hear if they are irritated or annoyed by the elements of the worship?
Seek edification of others with all the gifts you have been given. Encourage them and build them up on the foundation, as Paul used as an analogy or metaphor. Many different tools and talents are incorporated into the installation of the differing building materials. I think I have just been given a sermon...
In the example of eating, it's a matter of weakness, "the weak eats herbs." (Romans 14:2) Weakness is a sad state. We ought to care for the weak, and not to put anything in their path which might cause them to stumble. If they feel constrained not to eat meat, we shouldn't try to persuade them otherwise. "For if on account of meat thy brother is grieved, thou walkest no longer according to love. Destroy not him with thy meat for whom Christ has died." (Romans 14:15). I think we have to distinguish between weakness - which we must allow for - and positive error. The matter of eating is on a lower level than worship in the assembly, "for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking" (Romans 14:17), therefore we can and should make allowances. If we have to sacrifice natural things in order to safeguard the spiritual welfare of others, so be it.
I firmly believe that weak brethren are being "destroyed" by the unscriptural introduction of musical instruments (and other things) into the assembly. The pursuit of something which (many brethren will admit) adds nothing to spiritual worship is harming the people of God. How many of them are experiencing mere human emotion, produced by religious music, rather than the activity of the Holy Spirit? The weak, the young, the inexperienced - these may not be able to tell the difference between the two. This is destroying the work of God for the sake of meat, for the sake of indulging something which pleases us naturally. Romans 14 teaches us that.
But then, in order to justify musical instruments (and other things), it has to be taught that playing musical instruments, or dancing, or art, or architecture is somehow spiritual. That is a doctrine which is completely unfounded in the New Testament scripture, and is borrowed from the old system, which is a type of the new. So, a simple matter of meat leads on to serious error regarding the spiritual character of worship, and so on to the work of the Holy Spirit - holy ground. As the Lord said to Joshua, "Loose thy sandal from off thy foot: for the place whereon thou standest is holy." (Joshua 5:15)*. One thing leads to another, and building on a false basis results in an unstable structure. Going back to the blind men and the elephant, it's a matter of building on a false premise.
* This scripture is another example of how the natural cannot be combined with the spiritual - we can only stand rightly on holy ground having removed everything of man's works, the flesh, Adam.
I feel we must distinguish between spiritual gifts (which we see in 1 Corinthians 12) and what we might call 'material gifts'. We ought to be thankful for everything that God has provided. Regarding the matter of food, Paul writes to Timothy, "For every creature of God is good, and nothing is to be rejected, being received with thanksgiving" (1 Timothy 4:4). The physical food that we recieve from the hand of God builds us up physically, and the spiritual food we recieve from the same blessed Source builds us up spiritually. In the assembly, we get built up spiritually. Paul has to rebuke the Corinthians who weren't making a difference: "Have ye not then houses for eating and drinking?" (1 Corinthians 11:22). On this same line, Paul writes to Timothy that "bodily exercise is profitable for a little, but piety is profitable for everything, having promise of life, of the present one, and of that to come." (1 Timothy 4:8).
We have to put the difference between matters like eating and drinking, and spiritual things. If we conflate the two (as the Corinthians did, being carnal, fleshly, babes in Christ), or the teaching regarding the two, then we have confusion.
Music, or melody, doesn't (of itself) edify - we have to be clear about that. It's the words of a hymn or song which, if they convey an impression of divine things, build us up.
Regarding Romans 10:14, surely this is a call to preach the gospel, and preach it as sent of God? We can't fall into the trap of adjusting or compromising on divine things in order to feed nature or the flesh in anyone. My brethren and I preach in the street every Lord's day opposite a particularly rough pub, and our audience is mostly made up of men who're uniformly drunk and sometimes abusive. I prefer an abusive response than no reponse at all. That shows the word has penetrated, the conscience is affected. But should we leave out any mention of sin or sins, so as not to offend these men? I know that's not at all what you're advocating, brother, but that's the end of that line of things. The more we offer to nature and the flesh, the more people will come to church to be entertained, rather than edified. The more we seek after spiritual things, the more we'll be edified, strengthened, built up.
The construction of the spiritual building can only be carried out with spiritual materials and spiritual tools. These would, respectively, the work of God in the saints, and the spiritual gifts which God has given to men in order that that work might go on.
I take exception to pretty much all you've just said here. Weakness is not something to turn your nose up at. Born again believers may have a conviction about a certain thing, and it may be considered a weakness because they are certainly free to embrace that thing, but we are to cover them, to receive them despite that conviction. In the case of worship practices in the Body of Christ, there is nothing unscriptural in using musical instruments. In fact, it is completely scriptural and commended int he instruction of worship by David the Psalmist.
One who denies the use of musical instruments as somehow laden with the flesh needs to be considered the weaker brother in Christ and needs to be carefully taught...and prayed for, that Holy Spirit would bring gentle correction to him.
There is nothing sinful in the combining of natural and spiritual. That is what God does! After all, Holy Spirit dwells within the believer, a being of natural form. His presence permeates our very being, and He is revealed through our natural abilities, augmented by His spiritual power in and through us.
Too austere a view regarding living in faith can produce a form of religiosity and legalism that God cannot work with. Remember---in Christ, we are free, indeed!
What I was trying to convey was that weakness isn't a positive thing. If someone suffers from bodily weakness, it's not something that's desirable - we'd pray that they were strengthened, for their own sake. We ought to cherish and value all of our brethren, taking particular care of the weak, whether they're weak physically or weak spiritually.
I'm not going to repeat myself again regarding the psalms. I will just point out that we don't follow David, we follow the true David. What we see in the Lord Jesus - saw in His pathway down here, and see of Him in glory now - is perfect and complete and delightful to God. It is never mentioned that the Lord Jesus played a musical instrument, though He did lead the disciples in singing a hymn.
Again, it's important to distinguish between what's natural and what's spiritual. The scriptural envisages natural things stumbling the weak brother - if we leave these things out, then there'll be no occasion for stumbling.
Why does the New Testament scripture exclude the thought of the mixing of natural and spiritual in worship? In many, many incidences, the Holy Spirit is careful to distinguish between the natural and the spiritual for us in the scriptures. No such doctrine can be substantiated from the Word, nor does the idea of His presence permeating our very being have any basis in the scriptures, and being revealed through our natural abilities, and so on. If it isn't established on the solid ground of the Word, there's only one other origin for these ideas.
Well, brethren, I'm going to take moderator action on myself now and not post anymore on this thread. I feel that I've said everything that I can say, and it's on the record of the discussion. Perhaps brethren looking on might think all this has been a waste of time. Personally though, I've found the discussion very profitable - it's made me search the scriptures, and take things into the presence of God in prayer. It's made me appreciate the assembly more than ever. Most of all, it's given me a fresh appreciation of the Lord Jesus and the Holy Spirit. I'm glad of that, and I'm glad of the patience and grace of the brethren in discussing these things with me.
I, too, have searched scripture in this exercise and it has been very beneficial for me also. It has been a blessing, as it always is to search out truth. I greatly appreciate Grant's convictions on this subject and his attitude with which he espoused them. Well done Brother!
It isn't mentioned that Jesus ever bathed or even had a shower, or brushed his teeth, so should we refrain?
With Holy Spirit in a life, there is a new natural, and it isn't putrid infected with sin, but is a pleasing aroma to God when offered to Him in worship...wholly acceptable in His sight, praise the Lord!
The New Testament doesn't exclude anything of the sort. The doctrine of no musical instruments in worship is a man-made doctrine of austere proportions, fueled by legalism and a religious spirit...and perhaps an undercurrent of fear.
That the Holy Spirit permeates "our very being" and is revealed in all that we do is completely scriptural! A person filled with Holy Spirit shows it in his or her face, and eyes, and all that he or she does and says is coloured with His glory and empowered by Him. He permeates us, which is one meaning of the word, "pleroo", "be filled" from Ephesians 5:18, which is applicable.
Besides, the fruit of the Spirit is evident, physically in these ways: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control. If that isn't evidence of Holy Spirit permeating our very being, nothing is.