|How Can Christians Discern Between Good And Evil In Music?|
For any Christian who has not had his or her conscience seared through disobedience, the difference between devilish music and music of the Spirit is obvious. As Christians walk in submission to deeper levels of the anointing of Christ, their senses are exercised by reason of use. Obeying Christ causes discernment to increase, however, some fleshly methods are so deceptive that the spiritual gift of discernment of spirits may be needed to identify what is wrong with the music. In fact, much of the wicked form of music has, in its very nature, the ability to remove our ability to discern. Rebellion and disobedience sear the conscience and actually make it impossible for the disobedient or rebellious person to know the difference between right and wrong, and it becomes impossible for them to receive instruction.
If the Holy Spirit checks you at all, don't rationalize away the Spirit's good leading. Turn from evil. If you don't turn when the Holy Spirit urges you, then you may gradually find yourself becoming increasingly unable to discern between good and evil. Evil will seem to you as if it were good. Good will seem to you as if it were evil. That is the sad state where many Christians now find themselves. That is the sad state where many, many popular Christian entertainers now find themselves. Many have chosen popularity over Jesus.
If the music reminds you of a tavern, a night club, or a honky tonk, this is fleshly music. If it seems to encourage a fleshly type of dancing, it is fleshly. When the Bible speaks of dancing, as in Psalm 150, this is not the sensual dancing that is associated with the worldly. This is the dancing that praises the Lord. If the music gives you a sensual feeling or somehow arouses your old nature, then it is not music of the Spirit. It is not even good for entertainment. Go away from it. It is seeking to destroy you.
Don't be fooled by terms. Some will use the word, "true emotion," when describing a type of musical feeling. Some people think that the Holy Spirit is the same as human emotion. Some have equated the infilling of the Holy Spirit with an emotional experience. Emotion is a chemical and electrical experience in the human body--not the mind. The fall into sin turned the human condition upside-down. We were created to have the Holy Spirit ruling over our human spirits, our human spirits ruling over our minds/souls/hearts, and our minds/souls/hearts ruling over our bodies. The fall left us with Satan ruling over our bodies, our bodies ruling over our minds/souls/hearts, and our minds/souls/hearts ruling over our spirits--and our spirits being dead to the Holy Spirit. When we are born again, our spirits are joined in submission to the Holy Spirit and our human spirits begin to rule over our minds/souls/hearts. As we die to our self-nature, we live to Christ. As we yield to Christ, the part of our mind that was under the control of the fleshly nature is transfigured into the likeness of Christ. This is what it means to die to self and live to God.
While the Spirit may have an effect on the human body that results in an emotion, the Holy Spirit is not human emotion. Human emotion is a reaction of the human flesh. Emotion and feelings are impure because our bodies have not yet been redeemed. The Holy Spirit is pure and not at all dependent on feelings.
Another strange belief is the idea that the human spirit is same as the human soul. Soulish music is not spiritual music. The human spirit is not the soul. The soul is the same thing as the mind or heart. Even for a Christian, much of the soul is under the control of the fleshly nature. Once a person is born again, most of the emphasis and work of the Holy Spirit is to deliver the soul/mind from the bondage of the fleshly nature and Satan. My spirit has been given great liberty in Christ, while my soul is largely still in opposition to God. This bound-up portion of my soul is the self to which I must die. The other part of my soul is that mind of Christ, the portion of my soul/mind that has been transfigured into the likeness of Christ. Music that is sensual, angry, rebellious, drugged, demonic, or drunk is not spiritual music. There are beats and chord structures that actually can be demonic, yet they are often placed as a backdrop for beautiful words that have come from God. This is pollution of that which ought to be reserved for the Holy One. Music that is holy, peaceful, courageous, respectful, submissive to God, sober, resolute, and flowing with the Holy Anointing is spiritual music.
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
I may be deceived at times, but the Holy Spirit is never deceived. We need to seek God's leading and learn to discern between our own flesh and the Spirit of God. The Word of God, as unveiled by the Holy Spirit, is able to make this all very plain to us, but maturity doesn't come suddenly.
MUSIC IN THE WORD
Unfortunately, society has worked hard to greatly dim the ability of Christians to discern what is worldly and what is holy. These few scriptures are just a sampling of what the Bible has to say on the subject, but, though they are few, they will help show the way.
Romans 13:9 For this, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not kill, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness, Thou shalt not covet; and if there be any other commandment, it is briefly comprehended in this saying, namely, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Galatians 5:19-24 Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.
Philippians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
GOD'S ORDER FOR CHURCH SERVICES
1 Corinthians 14:1-40 Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy. For he that speaketh in an unknown tongue speaketh not to men, but to God: for no man understandeth him; howbeit in the spirit he speaketh mysteries. But he that prophesieth speaketh to men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort. He that speaketh in an unknown tongue edifieth himself; but he that prophesieth edifieth the church. I would that ye all spake with tongues, but rather that ye prophesied: for greater is he that prophesieth than he that speaketh with tongues, except he interpret, that the church may receive edifying. Now, brethren, if I come to you speaking with tongues, what shall I profit you, except I shall speak to you either by revelation, or by knowledge, or by prophesying, or by doctrine? And even things without life giving sound, whether pipe or harp, except they give a distinction in the sounds, how shall it be known what is piped or harped? For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle? So likewise ye, except ye utter by the tongue words easy to be understood, how shall it be known what is spoken? for ye shall speak into the air. There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification. Therefore if I know not the meaning of the voice, I shall be to him that speaketh a barbarian, and he that speaketh shall be a barbarian to me. Even so ye, forasmuch as ye are zealous of spiritual gifts, seek that ye may excel to the edifying of the church. Wherefore let him that speaketh in an unknown tongue pray that he may interpret. For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prayeth, but my understanding is unfruitful. What is it then? I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also: I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also. Else when thou shalt bless with the spirit, how shall he that occupieth the room of the unlearned say Amen at thy giving of thanks, seeing he understandeth not what thou sayest? For thou verily givest thanks well, but the other is not edified. I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than ye all: Yet in the church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that by my voice I might teach others also, than ten thousand words in an unknown tongue. Brethren, be not children in understanding: howbeit in malice be ye children, but in understanding be men. In the law it is written, With men of other tongues and other lips will I speak to this people; and yet for all that will they not hear me, saith the Lord. Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not: but prophesying serveth not for them that believe not, but for them which believe. If therefore the whole church be come together into one place, and all speak with tongues, and there come in those that are unlearned, or unbelievers, will they not say that ye are mad? But if all prophesy, and there come in one that believeth not, or one unlearned, he is convinced of all, he is judged of all: And thus are the secrets of his heart made manifest; and so falling down on his face he will worship God, and report that God is in you of a truth. How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done to edifying. If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret. But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God. Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge. If any thing be revealed to another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace. For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted. And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted to them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church. What? came the word of God out from you? or came it to you only? If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write to you are the commandments of the Lord. But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant. Wherefore, brethren, covet to prophesy, and forbid not to speak with tongues. Let all things be done decently and in order.
Since Music Has Transforming Power For Good Or Evil, What Do Christians Need To Do? (Go)
Last updated: Dec, 2011
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