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1 Chronicles 16:9-23 1
9 Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. 10 Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice. 11 Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always. 12 Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced, 13O descendants of Israel his servant, O sons of Jacob, his chosen ones. 14He is the LORD our God; his judgments are in all the earth. 15He remembers his covenant forever, the word he commanded, for a thousand generations, 16the covenant he made with Abraham, the oath he swore to Isaac. 17 He confirmed it to Jacob as a decree, to Israel as an everlasting covenant: 18″To you I will give the land of Canaan as the portion you will inherit.” 19 When they were but few in number, few indeed, and strangers in it, 20 they wandered from nation to nation, from one kingdom to another. 21He allowed no man to oppress them; for their sake he rebuked kings: 22″Do not touch my anointed ones; do my prophets no harm.” 23 Sing to the LORD, all the earth; proclaim his salvation day after day.

clip_image152Background 2

In the Hebrew Bible the books of 1 and 2 Chronicles were united as one book called ‘The words of the days’. But most scholars agree that originally 1 and 2 Chronicles was part of Ezra and Nehemiah and these four books comprised one writing.

1 and 2 Chronicles tells the long and detailed history of Israel, and in so doing the author has relied on many different writings. Much of the content of 1 and 2 Chronicles were taken from Samuel and Kings. It is also evident that the Chronicler relied on several other Old Testament writers like Judges, Ruth, Psalms, Isaiah, Jeremiah and Zechariah. There is even mention of several other sources being used in the book. Mention is made of, The book of the Chronicles of the Kings of Israel or Judah 1 Chronicles 27:24, the book of the annals of king David, of Samuel the seer, the records of Nathan the prophet and the records of Gad the seer, 1 Chronicles 29:29 to mention a few.

Apart from the genealogies found in the first nine chapters of first Chronicles this book deals with the forty year life and reign of King David. The Chronicler seeks to maintain the covenant continuity with the Messiah. God’s promises of a Messiah from David’s seed are remembered again as Israel’s hope.

Biblical Truths 3

Let God be glorified in our praises. Let others be edified and taught, that strangers to him may be led to adore him. Let us ourselves triumph and trust in God. Those that give glory to God’s name are allowed to glory in it. Let the everlasting covenant be the great matter of our joy his people of old, be remembered by us with thankfulness to him. Show forth from day to day his salvation, his promised salvation by Christ. We have reason to celebrate that from day to day; for we daily receive the benefit, and it is a subject that can never be exhausted. In the midst of praises, we must not forget to pray for the servants of God in distress.

Items for Discussion

  • Is worship the ultimate priority for the church, the reason man was created, the reason regenerate man was redeemed, and in the end, the culmination of man’s history? Please discuss your viewpoints
    • How is worship a celebration of God, His works and His character?
    • Services should lift our worship perspective up to the level of God, and not down to the level of mankind.
    • Worship should be full of joyful energy and expression in our music and praise. The music we use must be musically uplifting as well as textually edifying.
    • Music should show newness and creativity and engender the sense of awe and wonder that God deserves.
    • Our worship should include enthusiastic singing and music accompanied by instruments, voice and JOY!
  • Why does stale, dead music not promote healthy worship?
  • Should worship be offered solely for God’s enjoyment and pleasure?
  • Could corporate worship be conducted and be offensive to weaker believers? How?

 

Ephesians 5:19-20
19 Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, 20always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Background

Paul founded the Ephesian church during his third missionary journey (Acts 18) between 49-51 A.D. Ephesus was the fourth largest city in the Roman empire. Home of a temple to the fertility goddess, worship to her was the city’s largest source of income. Along with this idol worship, prostitution and other religious practices were prevalent throughout the city.

The letter was written during Paul’s Roman imprisonment (Eph.3:1; 4:1; 6:20), very close to the end of his life. The other letters written by Paul during this period are Colossians, Philippians, and Philemon. Many of the phrases and themes of Ephesians are also found in Colossians. Both letters were carried by Paul’s associate Tychicus (Col.4:7; Eph.6:21).

Bible Truths 4

Verse 19 Paul tells Christians what should happen when they meet together. They should be glad and they should praise God. They should sing and so encourage each other. Joy comes from inside us as does music. It may be silent and we may be singing only to the Lord. Christians have always sung to God. Every new movement of the Holy Spirit brings new songs of joy.

Verse 20 Paul tells Christians always to give thanks to God the Father. This can be by songs or in any other way. To complain is a sin. In the Old Testament, it was one of the sins of the Israelites. It does not please God. Believers who are filled with the Holy Spirit should not complain. They should always give thanks to God for everything. There is only one way to obey this instruction: that is to have a complete faith in God. We do not praise God for evil things. We praise him for the benefit that he will cause from them.

All this comes from ‘God the Father’. But it is ‘in the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord’. This is because every good thing comes by him. Again, we see here our Three in One God. God fills us with the Holy Spirit. We then give thanks to God the Father. We do it in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Items for Discussion

  • How would you describe music that is appropriate for worship?
  • Has this description changed over time?
  • In what way does music draw one’s heart closer to God?
  • How can music interfere with worship?
  • How is music a form of communication? To you and to God?
  • What is gained and lost by worshiping with traditional hymns and organ?
  • What is gained and lost by worshiping with contemporary instruments and songs?
  • How do you think the new emerging technologies like video and the Internet will impact the worship experience in the future?

Discussion Challenge

  • How does a church keep pace with the changes in society with regard to motivation of the Spirit without compromising the worship itself?

Notes:

  1. NIV New International Version Translations
  2. http://www.abu.nb.ca/ecm/Chr10b.htm
  3. http://www.christnotes.org/commentary.php?com=mhc&b=13&c=16
  4. http://www.easyenglish.info/bible-commentary/eph-lbw.htm
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