Need Help!

Discussion in 'A capella Exclusive Psalmody' started by Ray, Dec 8, 2017.

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  1. Ray

    Ray Puritan Board Freshman

    Hello Brothers and Sisters I’ve been dialoguing with a Brother about Exclusive Psalmody and the Regulative Principle. I was trying to explain to him about how Singing is a separate element of worship. And he responded to me with this:

    V. The Arbitrariness of regulating the words of one element of worship differently than the
    words of other elements of worship


    This conundrum mentioned above reveals what many of us have frequently found to be
    curious about exclusive psalmody: It has a different criterion for regulating worship-song than it
    does for regulating the administration of the word or sacraments, or prayer. It is not wrong to
    preach sermons “of human composition;” it is not wrong to pray prayers “of human
    composition;” nor is it wrong to confess the faith in creeds “of human composition;” but it is
    wrong, by their theory, to sing songs of human composition. Further, I’ve not yet discovered a
    place where exclusive psalmists argue for why the element of singing praise is different from
    other elements of worship in such a manner that requires or permits this element to be differently
    regulated than other elements.


    So my question is may a more informed Exclusive Psalmist help me with a response to him because I do not know how to properly respond.

    Thank you
    Grace n Peace.
     
  2. Ed Walsh

    Ed Walsh Puritan Board Junior

    Here's a link to the whole article by T David Gordon
    https://is.gd/mudRFV
     
  3. greenbaggins

    greenbaggins Administrator Staff Member

    I could be wrong, Ed, but it seems that Ray is looking for someone who espouses EP to help craft a reply to a non-EP challenge. Gordon is not arguing for an EP position.
     
  4. Ed Walsh

    Ed Walsh Puritan Board Junior

    Your right. I just thought some might like to see the context of the quote.
    Thanks
     
  5. Ray

    Ray Puritan Board Freshman

    Yes Sir!
     
  6. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

  7. Jeri Tanner

    Jeri Tanner Moderator Staff Member

    The difference from prayer and preaching is that the song is put into the mouths of the people to confess corporately. That should only be the word of God in worship. The amen can be withheld from an uninspired prayer, if necessary; the preaching can be weighed and analyzed. But the song must be sung by all, which is a confession of common belief, and so must be without error. Deuteronomy 31 shows Moses, in his prophetic office, commanded to write a song and "put it into the mouths of the people." The song would instruct, sanctify, reprove, etc., since it was the word of God.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2017
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  8. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    Dr. Prutow has a section on "WHY REGULATE TEACHING, PRAYING, AND SINGING DIFFERENTLY?" in Public Worship 101: An Introduction to the Biblical Theology of Worship, the Elements of Worship, Exclusive Psalmody, and A Cappella Psalmody (Kindle Location 6145). Reformed Presbyterian Theological Seminary Press. Kindle Edition. You can pick up the Kindle edition here: https://www.amazon.com/Public-Worsh...1384991868&sr=1-1&keywords=public+worship+101
    I could not find direct citations matching the OP but Dr. Prutow does interact with Gordon's and other's arguments.
     
  9. Ray

    Ray Puritan Board Freshman

    Thank you. But I’ll have to wait on purchasing any more books for a whille. Don’t have any extra money these day.
     
  10. TylerRay

    TylerRay Puritan Board Senior

    Ray,
    The reading of the Word is an element of worship as well, and nobody would want to argue that a page of uninspired literature could be read instead.
     
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  11. BG

    BG Puritan Board Junior

    Ray, your friend is inconsistent, He is I’m sure okay that God regulates the Sacraments, who can preach or read scripture and what day we worship on but not the songs we sing, his problem is with God not reformed worship. Having said that, I would not press to hard on the issue unless he brings it up, pray for your brother, ask God to open his eyes to this wonderful truth. Psalm 119:18



     
  12. Poimen

    Poimen Puritan Board Post-Graduate

  13. Ray

    Ray Puritan Board Freshman

  14. JTB.SDG

    JTB.SDG Puritan Board Sophomore

    Wow, that's a pretty strong statement. Is that also true of all of those on PB who don't agree with exclusively singing Psalms?
     
  15. BG

    BG Puritan Board Junior

    Jon, it is true of all who believe that God is inconsistent in the way He regulates worship. I don’t mean to offend anyone but I am willing to defend what I believe. If we are unwilling to defend what we believe do we believe it? BTW this is not a EP only thread, feel free to put in your two cents.
     
  16. JTB.SDG

    JTB.SDG Puritan Board Sophomore

    Bill, my problem wasn't with the position but the way it was presented. I'm A-mill but that doesn't mean I say that others who are not ultimately have a problem with God. We need to have convictions, but also be charitable. Same with infant baptism. I have convictions that I believe are based biblically. But I wouldn't say that those who aren't paedo baptist are not so because they have a problem with God. But feel free to push back. In terms of my two cents, I thought the guy actually had a pretty decent argument.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
  17. brendanchatt

    brendanchatt Puritan Board Freshman

    Very silly argument.

    E.g., "now the reading of God's word from Calvin's Institutes"

    There are many reasons that can answer that statement, but really it's about this: singing is singing, and praying is praying; they have similarities, but they're clearly two different things. Now let's get back to asking what God's word tells us to sing.
     
  18. Jeri Tanner

    Jeri Tanner Moderator Staff Member

    This seems to be the key as to the regulating of the element of praise and raises the crucial question: what *is* corporate praise? Christ promises that he himself will sing praise in the congregation; the Psalms are "the Book of Praises." When we're commanded to praise God in the assembly, and Christ is among us as leader of the praise, it becomes more clear that the content of praise must fall under the RPW.
     
  19. brendanchatt

    brendanchatt Puritan Board Freshman

    I'll add,

    Why arbitrate? Because God does. Really you should address that question to Him.

    The exclusive psalmodist is simply concerned with what God commands. This statement is human and ignores that. You can appeal to your friend like this, "think like you do in other areas of your Christian walk, and this objection won't make sense to you."

    Why not envy? The beauty of contentment answers this question excellently. But the basic answer is, "God says so," "if you're Christian why are you asking that?"

    Ask a better question like, "what does God command?"
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
  20. Andrew P.C.

    Andrew P.C. Puritan Board Junior


    The very fact that women are supposed to participate in singing demands a different regulation. Unless he wants to suggest women can preach as well.
     
  21. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    I'm drawing a blank. Where is that specified in Scripture?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  22. brendanchatt

    brendanchatt Puritan Board Freshman

    Hey Jon,

    The problem with the argument in the OP is that it doesn't ask the right question, which is, "what does God command?"

    There are arguments which explore whether new hymns are required in scripture. This endeavour is more noble than the point in the OP because it can be part of answering the good question I mentioned; it is more noble in theory.

    The positions you mentioned: anyone holding any of them should do so out trying to answer a good question. Trying to answer a bad question can suggest they have a problem with God telling them what to do or believe.

    Granted, the bad question may be asked because a position has been poorly represented; I agree then that charity is essential as it always is.

    Nevertheless, with matters of worship, one must be very critically minded and fearful of God when trying to suggest the use of something.

    If the question in the OP is meant as, "where does the bible make these distinctions?" then that is better asked. In response, there are different words in the bible for singing and say, teaching. Singing is used in reference to songs, e.g., James 5:13. Teaching is used in reference to doctrine in general and the sense of scripture, Neh. 8:8. Singing and prayer are also two distinct acts, Acts 16:25. This leads to ask what may be preached, what sung, and what prayed.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2017
  23. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    "Psalms, and hymns, and spiritual songs"
     
  24. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    Thanks for clearing that up.
     
  25. BG

    BG Puritan Board Junior

    Psalms and Hymns inspired by the Holy Spirit, better translation
     
  26. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    :)

    But, generally, I find that these threads turn into :deadhorse:
     
  27. NaphtaliPress

    NaphtaliPress Administrator Staff Member

    It could be worse; we haven't had to add separate "safe space' forums yet for hymn singers and psalm singers like on baptism.
     
  28. JTB.SDG

    JTB.SDG Puritan Board Sophomore

    A picture says a thousand words.
     
  29. Andrew P.C.

    Andrew P.C. Puritan Board Junior


    Where is what in scripture? That women are to sing? Or that only men can preach?
     
  30. Edward

    Edward Puritan Board Doctor

    Did you see the quote with which I was interacting? Here it is again.

     
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