Scripture directs our attention to only one Rock, and that Rock is Jesus Christ. Indeed, as David wrote, “The LORD is my Rock”. Who is God, except the Lord? And who is a rock, except our God?” May we always remember that all Christian music should be “Rock music”, styles not withstanding. God created music to glorify Him. Music is a gift from God and can minister to us in the form of “psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs”. As Paul indicated in that verse, the place where the melody comes from is the heart. Heartless music is dead music, be it soft or loud, rock or jazzy. Therefore, if we are called to minister the gospel of Jesus Christ through music, the Lordship of Christ must exist in our hearts.
Lord is His title. That’s how we’re to relate to Him. Step one in being a truly effective music minister is found in one’s personal commitment to Jesus. Talent alone cannot minister and, although I’m certain that half-hearted, good-enough-to-get-by attitudes grieve the Lord, I’m equally certain that a motivation of impressing others or showing the devil that Christians can play skillfully is also wrong. Jesus does not gift us to be exhibitionists! Meekness and lowliness of heart with a compassion for the lost are keys to anointed ministry.
Let’s not forget that it’s this Rock that was smitten7 that gives life. Also, in Numbers 20:8-13, we read that Moses was to speak to the Rock, but instead he smote it twice, incensed at the “rebels” in the camp. (I’ve seen angry evangelism!) Moses, in anger, misrepresented the Lord before the people. Think about that. As Christians, our life is our ministry, regardless of our line of work. God hasn’t called us to call down fire from heaven to consume the lost! No, “Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners”. They need to see the light, not lightning!
Oh, blessed be this Rock, Jesus! My heart echoes the words of the prophet Micah: “Who is a God like You, pardoning iniquity and passing over the transgression of the remnant of His heritage? He does not retain His anger forever, because He delights in mercy.”
Brother or sister in music ministry or the arts, cultivate your personal walk with Jesus. In doing this, Christ will be expressed through you. I cannot emphasize enough the importance of the word of God. I love (eros, not agape) music, but as a musician I must always remember that “God so loved the world that He gave…” Gave what? Hymns, contemporary music, etc.? No, “His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
May we rivet that truth in our hearts! May we accept the gift of music to assist us in communicating the gospel to a lost and needy world. No doubt some people will consider us offensive, but that should be because of the “aroma” we project, not because we are obnoxious or rude. Belonging to and walking with Jesus will unavoidably make us offensive to some people.
We desperately need to catch the heart of God if our evangelism is to be effective. The fruit of the Spirit is love, and it’s the love of Christ (not music) that must constrain us to serve. It is this agape love that also must overcome the differences in musical tastes and ministries in order to prevent them from becoming divisive.
My heart is truly supportive of music ministry, but I recognize that it’s a tool that can be both used and abused. The key? Each one of us and our walk with Jesus. We must continually abide in Christ, read His word, pray and talk with Him throughout the day. Furthermore, let me encourage you to redeem the time, and get involved in your local church. After all, if you’re not ministering now, what makes you think you will “on the road?”