It’s official—worshiping Jesus spreads the coronavirus!
The Bible commands us to love our neighbors as ourselves…and the most loving thing we could possibly do in these unprecedented times is, keep our germs to ourselves!
Or so says a couple of reporters for the Minnesota Post:
“As faiths share a value for human life, I know that each leader will take extra care to protect and serve their people. We have to be able to trust one another if we are ever going to be able to reopen.”
Allow me to translate: Wear a mask at all times, don’t touch each other, don’t sit next to each other, and stop singing worship songs…or we will close your church doors permanently.
Tom Olson gives “Seven Biblical Reasons Why Singing Matters.” You can read the article in its entirety here. A couple of his points are noteworthy given the current climate.
When you sing, you make war
“Chances are you didn’t connect singing and warfare together, but it’s a theme visible in Scripture. In Colossians 3, Paul is challenging the Colossians to literally put sin to death in their lives, to kill sin. So all the commands to love and peace and forgiveness and teaching and singing are attitudes and habits of the believer that will kill sin!
We see the same thing in Ephesians 5, the command to address one another in song comes right on the heels of “[make] the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:16).
And the more you think about this, it makes total sense: What posture must be more hated by the evil one than the posture of a believer who is singing? I can’t think of many stances you can take that identifies you with Christ and against Satan more than eyes, heart, mind, and voice lifted to heaven in song!
It’s very hard to lie, be greedy or to look at something inappropriate when, you’re “singing and making melody to the Lord with your heart” (Ephesians 5:19). Simply, a heart that’s doing that will not easily give in to temptation.
A singing heart is a heart at war with the work of the evil one and the power of sin.”
When you sing, you are spiritually strengthened for trial
“Often times, we think only of singing when we’re happy and times are good but singing bringing strength for trial comes out in Acts 16. Paul and Silas are unjustly imprisoned for the sake of the Gospel, and what do they do while they are in prison? Sing! (Acts 16:25)
And this truth is confirmed in the lives of persecuted believers throughout history. Hear the words of one pastor recently imprisoned for his faith:
…When we were in prison, we sang almost every day because Christ was alive in us…they put chains on our hands and feet. They chained us to add to our grief. Yet we discovered that chains are splendid musical instruments! When we clanged them together in rhythm, we could sing, ‘This is the day (clink, clank), this is the day (clink, clank), which the Lord has made (clink, clank), which the Lord has made (clink, clank). (persecutionblog.com)
Our persecuted brothers are showing us the truth we see in Acts 16 with Paul and Silas. Singing strengthens you and helps you persevere in the face of trial. If it can strengthen them in the face of these trials, what can it do for you?
Even in suffering, sing!”
Okay…we rolled over for the shelter in place. Then, we all ran out and got a bunch of masks. Next, we dutifully logged into Zoom to watch our Sunday services online. Now, we are being forbidden…to worship. At what point to we put down the white flag and fight for our God-given rights?
And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve Yahweh. Joshua 24:15
Are we seriously going to just sit back while the government unconstitutionally OUTLAWS praising God? Praising Yahweh is MORE than our constitutional right…it is our duty, our calling, and our delight—given by a higher authority than the U. S. Government—Yahweh Himself.
Do not FEAR!
“I (King Nebuchadnezzar) was looking in the visions in my mind as I lay on my bed, and behold, an angelic watcher, a holy one, descended from heaven…This sentence is by the decree of the angelic watchers, and the decision is a command of the holy ones, in order that the living may know that the Most High is ruler over the realm of mankind!” (Daniel 4: 13, 17).
What will happen to us as a Church if we fear man more than we fear God? What will happen to us if we obediently follow government orders in order to disobey the Word of God which commands us to worship Him?
Daniel did not fear the king. In Daniel 1, when required to eat the king’s choice food, the Word tells us that Daniel, “made up his mind that he would not defile himself.” When Daniel’s buddies are called out a couple chapters later for not bowing to the golden image, they determined that whether their God saved their skins or not, they would not bow down. All four of these men decided to not obey the tyrannical orders of the godless king. They didn’t flaunt their decisions. They were not rude, aggressive, or violent. They did not take force. They merely continued to do what they always had done until they got caught. And once the consequences of their biblical decisions caught up with them, God honored them and used their faith to speak to the king…and to us.
Choose TODAY whom you shall serve.
MAKE UP YOUR MINDS right now to not defile yourselves.
This is where we draw the line, Church. This is where we “take up arms” against the Enemy. Not weapons of warfare…weapons of spiritual warfare. The arms we take up are our own—lift them high and sing with all your might! Don’t let their “mask of the Beast” stifle our praise.
In the (somewhat altered) words of William Wallace:
“Run, and you’ll live…at least a while. And dying in your beds, many years from now, would you be willing to trade all the days, from this day to that, for one chance – just one chance – to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives but they’ll never take our hymnals!”