Last updated on October 10th, 2019
How often do you sing to God? Do you know that God wants you to sing to Him? Probably not questions you get asked often. With each of these posts I write, I always hope for one of two things that I can accomplish for you and even for myself when I get thought provoking responses. I hope that we’re all getting closer to accurate Christian beliefs based on God’s Word, and I also hope that we’re doing more things stated in God’s Word to have a deeper connection with God. Today’s post is going to be the latter. So once again I ask, how often do you sing to God?
I can tell you for myself I try to remember to sing to God every day. One of the chapters I typically sing is Psalm 113, which is known as one of the paschal hymns (Psalm 113-118, 136) that the Jews called the “great Hallel”. It may very well have been one of the hymns Jesus and the Apostles sang. For those of us who’ve read through the Book of Psalms in the Old Testament, we’re familiar with all the singing and praising of God that David and the Israelites did. But it’s also something that was perhaps of equal importance in the New Testament as well.
Jesus and the apostles sang
For example, it’s noted in both Matthew and Mark that Jesus and His apostles sang.
Matthew 26:30 states, “After singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.”
Mark 14:26 states, “After singing a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.”
I don’t know about you guys, but it’s not something that typically comes to mind when I think of Jesus, that he would actually sing. It’s fascinating to me to see this noted. Another instance we see singing is when Apostle Paul and Christian prophet Silas sang while they were in jail.
Acts 16:24 states, “But about midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns of praise to God, and the prisoners were listening to them;”
It’s beautiful to see that even in such dire circumstances, Paul and Silas were still praising God through singing hymns. It’s a wonderful example that we can all follow in our own dire circumstances in life.
Speaking of Apostle Paul, on two separate occasions he instructs the church to sing.
Ephesians 5:19 states “speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord;” Now the prior verse to this particular verse was interesting to me. Verse 18 states, “And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit” In contrasting wine and the Spirit, Paul appears to be expressing he would rather people get filled up with the Spirit than get filled to intoxication with wine. The interesting part to me is the fact that the speaking to one another in psalms, hymns, spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord immediately follows that. Is it the case that these actions are the result of being filled with the Spirit, or doing these actions is what causes filling ourselves with a drink of the Spirit much like drinking wine causes one to get drunk off of it. Or perhaps maybe verse 19 is just a continuation of instructions Paul is giving and it has nothing of the sort to do with spirit filling, and Paul was just stating that in verse 18 as contrast to not getting intoxicated. I’ll let you all have fun pondering that, though I will say I find myself leaning towards conclusion number two.
Colossians 3:16 states, “Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” Now reviewing the verses before and after verse 16, this verse appears to be a part of a list of instructions where Paul is reflecting how people as those who have been chosen by God should be as expressed in verse 12. Thus, singing with thankfulness in our hearts to God should be a part of one’s actions in reflecting being one who has been chosen by God.
The last instruction we find to sing is in James 5:13 which states, “Is anyone among you suffering? Then he must pray. Is anyone cheerful? He is to sing praises.” I think this verse in addition to the other verses we looked at perhaps suggest to us that God wants us to sing to Him frequently, not just in a setting of assembling with one another. As the example of Apostle Paul shows us, one can sing to God in dire circumstances, and as this verse states, we sing to God when we’re cheerful as well. However often each of us individually chooses to sing to God, I hope this can be an encouragement to all of us to put in time singing our hearts to God as He appears to desire of us.
Peace to all those who are in Christ.