Worship or Entertainment?

Music and Worship Picture: Wikipedia

I was listening to some secular music that came from my daughter’s collection. Some of the music had the feel and sound of contemporary worship songs. This led me to thinking how many modern Christian songs have a main stream sound. (Don’t even get me started on the “Jesus is my boy friend” style lyrics!) Now don’t get me wrong. I believe music is a God’s gift to man and has a wide range of functions from worship, education , to entertainment. The question that crossed my mind however was, “Is it appropriate to use worship songs as entertainment or background music (musak) when essentially our minds are engaged elsewhere?” Does this use of Christian music honour God?

To be honest I am very uncomfortable when we use worship songs as part of the background noise of our lives without taking notice of what the words are declaring. Worship is giving God the honour that is His due. We do that with our hearts and lives and with our work and quiet moments. Is it right then to treat music and words so glibly?

Sometimes when I am in my car by myself and there is worship music playing it can be a special moment. God draws me close and my heart is lifted towards Him. That is because I am having time alone with God – nothing is distracting the attention that God deserves. But am I wrong in thinking that there are moments in the hurley-burley of our lives when using worship songs as fill in noise, is not appropriate?

Categories: christian, Christianity, Devotional, Faith, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , | 9 Comments

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9 thoughts on “Worship or Entertainment?

  1. I apologise before hand if what I say hurts you my friend. What I want to say is- this a debatable topic. It will be nice to leave it for each person’s disposition and worshipping means to reach God. Have a nice day my friend. God bless you!

    • I agree it is debatable. It is just something that causes me concern and I would love to hear what others think and how they reason their view.

  2. Thanks for raising this fascinating topic. For me, I try to live a ‘holistic’ life, – since Jesus has promised to be with us always, then every moment of every day, we are in his presence. So praise going on in the background helps me to keep drawing back to remembering that and ‘chatting’ to him as I’m busy with something. Also, if the rocks and stones might sing, why not my kitchen??? I do think it keeps the atmosphere in the home more God-ward. If it gets distracting or annoying, it quickly gets switched off. But if you don’t find it helpful, don’t do it. God has made us wonderfully unique, so there are no right answers. I love reading your posts, so thanks for the challenging thought on this one.

  3. Kik

    Hi Pa, We were talking about this topic in Bible Study the other day. A week earlier I had decided to play a youtube playlist of comtemporary Christian music through my headphones at work, (i.e. while working), because I felt I wasn’t getting enough God time. I wanted to hear His promises again. Despite my mind not being fully engaged with the music, it had a very calming effect. By day’s end I was calmer than I had been in a while. I guess it has to do with the heart. Are you listening for entertainment, or are listening for the God that speaks to you above the clatter and din of the entertainment… love Kik

    • Thanks for the comments Kik. I suppose you were deliberately wanting to hear from God and not just be entertained. You are right – God does speak to our heart!

  4. Pingback: Worship or Entertainment? | Christian Music Jukebox

  5. Good topic and there are many perspectives. I agree that worship is individual. I tend to stay away from the Jesus is my boyfriend kind of music, but love a lot of the contemporary music that truly has a heart for God. Our church has three worship teams, a choir, and a youth worship team. The music is varied with each team having it’s own “sound.” All are done with worship as the main focus. Our pastor speaks often about worship. He also cautions us about what the lyrics of songs say – not all songs are worship songs, some are more songs about us than about God. He tells us that we need to be careful not to mindlessly sing lyrics that are not biblical, even though they sound good.

    I do sometimes keep worship music on in the background. Let me explain why. The airwaves are the province of the enemy, and if I am going to have something in the background, I want it to be glorifying God, irritating the enemy. Worship music, even when not listened to with full attention fills my mind with positive thoughts, and a lyric or a tune will often pull me from what I’m doing and draw my attention toward God. There is a place for background worship music.

    When we have meetings with teenagers in our Titus2 group, we sometimes play music in the background. Our teens bring unchurched friends to the meetings and we do fun things in a Godly atmosphere. The music in the background might drop a line into one of these children’s minds in a way that preaching won’t do.

    When I was growing up, I was unchurched. My parents were alcoholics and abusers. Once I got to go to a Vacation Bible study and learned the lyrics to Jesus Loves Me. That song stuck with me for the forty years I lived in the wilderness without God. Sometimes I wishfully wanted Jesus to love me, other times I was angry for I figured that if Jesus really loved me, He wouldn’t have let the abuse occur. I am now saved and have a wonderful relationship with God. I still think fondly how that little tune kept rattling around in my brain when I was so lost. I figure God can use music in ways we can’t even imagine.

    Sorry for the dissertation, but I love worship music and know that it can have far reaching effects.
    Have a blessed day.

  6. Heather I really appreciate your response. What comes through is that you play Christian music “with a purpose”. You are aware of what you are doing. That is wonderful. I suppose the bottom line for me is that there are times when we do it “carelessly” failing to acknowledge that call or word of God. We are yelling at the kids or pulling our hair out over bills and we are not noticing that there is a Godly word being sung to us. If God is speaking I believe we should sit up and take notice.

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