Hidden Treasures

The Bible is much more than a book of religion.

Why Go to Church?

Why Go to Church?

One Sunday morning, a mother went in to wake her son and tell him it was time to get ready for church, to which he replied, “I’m not going.” 
“Why not?” she asked.  
I’ll give you two good reasons,” he said. “(1), they don’t like me, and (2), I don’t like them.”  
His mother replied, “I’ll give you two good reasons why you SHOULD go to church: 
(1) You’re 49 years old, and (2) you’re the pastor!”

Goat for Dinner The young couple invited their elderly pastor for Sunday dinner.  While they were in the kitchen preparing the meal, the minister asked their son what they were having. 
“Goat,” the little boy replied. 
“Goat?” replied the startled man of the cloth, “Are you sure about that?” 
“Yep,” said the youngster. “I heard Dad say to Mom, ‘Today is just as good as any to have the old goat for dinner.’ “



May 8, 2010 Posted by | A Merry Heart | Comments Off on Why Go to Church?

Christian Music and Unity

We are all individuals with likes and dislikes.  That’s not sinful.  It’s just a fact of life.  We enjoy being with people who think the way we do  and we all tend to avoid people who make an issue of their beliefs and preferences and try  to force them on us.  You are that way and  I am that way.

Christians are simply people with a wide variety of likes and dislikes who have been overcome by the Gospel of Christ. Genuine Christians love Jesus.  We love Him more than life itself. We love Him more than our opinions and preferences.  We long to please Him and one day be with Him in Heaven.

We not only love Jesus, but we love our brothers and sisters in Christ. As Christians with our individual and differing tastes, we are drawn together by one magnet only; our love for Jesus and His Word, the Bible.



 As Christians, we are commanded to be filled or controlled by the Holy Spirit, the very Spirit of Christ. Every Christian has the Holy Spirit the moment he is saved according to Romans 8:9.  It’s one thing to have the Spirit and it’s another thing to be filled or controlled by Him.  Every Christian is commanded to be filled with the Spirit according to Ephesians 5:18.   According to that same verse,  to be filled means to be controlled  just as fully as one who is drunk is controlled by wine or other alcoholic beverages.  Actually, one filled with the Spirit lives a self-controlled life. while one drunk with liquor lives an uncontrolled life.



 How can we tell whether we are filled with the Spirit?  Continue reading in Ephesians 5:18-21 for the answer to this important question.

1. Christians who are filled or controlled by the Spirit, love to gather together to sing from their hearts, “Psalms, hymns of praise and spiritual songs in which we share testimonies of what Jesus means to us.  Such songs are set to melodies. Melodies are simply singable, pleasing patterns of music that fit the message of a song. A good song is one that beautifully marries the melody to the message of the song. For example,  the majestic, awesome words of Holy, Holy, Holy would not fit well to the marching music of Onward Christians Soldiers. The Christian songs we sing in private, at home or in church, are sung to the Lord. That is worship. Ephesians 5:19.

However, worship is more than singing.  Worship for the Christians begins with surrender of our lives to Christ.  One who is in rebellion to Christ cannot worship, nor will he enjoy being in a worship service. Sin must be confessed before we can worship in Spirit and in Truth, as Jesus demands in John 4.  Read the whole chapter and observe how skillfully Jesus dealt with a woman about her sin, and changed her life.  Note how He teaches her and us truths about worship.

2. Sprit-filled Christians are also overcome by continual thankfulness to God for all He has done for us in sending Jesus to die for our sins and for all He means to us as Christians.  We have thankful spirits, rather than complaining, griping spirits. according to Ephesians 5:20   Complaining, bitter, unforgiving Christians are not filled with the Spirit.  Sin must be confessed and rejected.  We must get off the throne of our life and ask Christ to be Lord of our life.  When He is Lord, the Holy Spirit is in control and we are filled with the Spirit.  This is why a Spirit filled Christian enjoys and appreciates Biblical preaching that deals with sin in his life.  When he sees the sin in his life, he can confess it and once again be restored to fellowship with Christ.

3. Spirit-filled Christians are also not only submitted to Christ; but to one another in the church.  If we get stiff-necked and bitter when we are confronted with sin in our lives, we are no longer Spirit-filled and Spirit-led.  Spirit filled Christians do not insist on having their own ways at home or in their churches.    I, as a Christian husband do not lord it over my wife; but serve her.  As pastor of my church, I do not lord it over my flock; nor do our elders and deacons.  Though we guard our flock from false teachers and sin, we are basically servants of the flock and we lead by serving  one another in love,  just as a Spirit-filled husband and wife serve one another.

If you do not pass these three Biblical tests of Ephesians 4:18-21,  please do not boast about  being filled with the Spirit.  The experience you had was merely an empty. emotional experience and nothing more.



 As for Christian music, as a 77 year old Christian who was saved as a child and spent my entire life in a wide variety of churches, let me give you my perspective on music.  As a musician, I love to play the piano and sing, Often late at night, I will play hymns and spiritual songs of testimony for thirty minutes or more in worship of God.  I have always appreciated a wide range of music; including, the wide range of Biblical hymns and Gospel songs of testimony found in many hymn books.  I probably have a range of about close to 1000 hymns and Gospel songs that I appreciate and love. There are probably another several hundred Biblical hymns written two or three centuries ago found in old hymnals that we ought to be aware of and using, although some of the music is difficult to sing. 

I also love Negro Spirituals, but appreciate them most when sung by black choirs.  I also appreciate some Southern Gospel music, and classical type choral music, such as Handel’s Messiah, a piece that can best be sung by a  trained choir.

There are also some hymns in our church hymn book of over 800 hymns that I refuse to sing.  Regardless of the Biblical message of the hymn, if the music has no sensible musical pattern and  is unsingable, I refuse to sing it. 

I love orchestral and band music and, of course, piano and organ music. Yes, I also love the use of drums used musically; not just to make a noise.

At the same time, I also have a strong aversion to being forced to listen to any so-called music that is not musical or that has a perverted Biblical message or no message at all.   I can’t bear to listen to or watch soloists who screw their faces up to try to imitate some rock star and who sing words that cannot be understood or that have little or nothing to do with Christ or Christianity.

Although much of so-called Contemporary Christian music turns me off because it is not Biblical nor musical;  I have heard some music under that classification that blesses me because it is Scripturally based and because it is truly musical and singable.



 As I grow older I look forward to Heaven and the music of Heaven where Christ alone will be exalted and the music will beyond our wildest imagination and we will all sing together in perfect harmony and with a perfect heart. 

In the meantime, beloved Christian friend, be patient with me and I will be patient with you.   If loving Jesus and living for Him is the most important thing in your life,  we have much in common and I recognize you my beloved friend and brother or sister in the Lord.

May 8, 2010 Posted by | MUSIC | Comments Off on Christian Music and Unity