Music and Theology

Matt Papa on Gospel-Centered Music:

The power of “song” is hard to exaggerate. Someone has said, “Let me make a nation’s (popular) songs, and I care not who make their laws.” Luther counted hymnody just under preaching in terms of theological formation. I say it this way: A song is a sermon people remember. People forget a sermon in a couple of weeks. They remember a song forever.

That means if we as worship leaders and Christian artists are leading people astray with our lyrics, I believe we’ve got a lot of heavy millstones waiting for us. Songs and art have power, permanence, and influence, especially in the realm of theology. And it probably goes without saying but that which influences theology influences everything.

“What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.” – A. W. Tozer

For the artist: I think it will forever be a struggle for those in ministry – whose “market” is the church – to discern whether God is using them or they are using God. Pray for us Christian artists that we would be servants, not rock-stars. That we would be ministers, not icons. That we would wash feet. That it would become our ambition to build the kingdom of God, and that God would bless us to the extent that we embrace His mission in the world and not our own.

Pray for us that we would become increasingly biblical…unafraid to say things that should be said…unafraid to sing things that should be sung. And pray that we would be focused…we will have all eternity to write music…we must win souls.