The Second Commandment, part II; The Lord's Day vs another formal gathering

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Gforce9

Puritan Board Junior
Not wanting to hijack or derail Raymond's question below, a new thread is born:

http://www.puritanboard.com/f15/second-commandment-applicability-private-worship-76824/


This topic is particularly interesting to me. I play guitar. I play bass. I like and play all kinds of music. I try to pick parts that really brings the most out of a song. David Gilmour, guitarist from Pink Floyd and Don Felder from the Eagles are examples of having mastered this. I work hard at that craft, and find it difficult to play with folks who don't grasp this or don't care. Up until a little over a year ago, I played in the "band" at the church I was a member of for 14 years. I love to play and there is a pleasure that I receive from playing music that I don't experience in any other (secular) activity. Some people love sports, I love playing music. I don't watch football. :D
I no longer believe that what I love to do most is appropriate for the corporate worship of God, so I've ceased. Also, we are pursuing communicant membership in a church/denomination that regulates worship. If a couple of fellow musicians wanted to perform a Saturday night concert at a church, for example, would that be an acceptable place in which to exercise my desire? Similar to Raymond's question, does the Second Commandment apply to a gathering where it is possible that worship may happen, but not the corporate Lord's Day gathering? If a Friday night song list included some CCM, would we be violating the S.C.? I would really like to play music that isn't glorifying sin (much of secular music) and in a place where sin abounds (a tavern).
 

Scott1

Puritanboard Commissioner
Can you clarify a bit more what you are asking?

If I'm following, you are understanding there is a difference between worship and entertainment. Wholesome entertainment is not prohibited, but it's not a focus of the church.
 

Gforce9

Puritan Board Junior
Scott,
I'm concerned about the application of the S.C. and me playing music in arena's outside the Lord's Day gathering ( maybe a Saturday night concert at a local church). Another question to get at this might be: Is a group like Chris Tomlin's in violation of the S.C. at one of his concerts.
I apologize for the lack of clarity in the OP....I'm old, tired, and my back hurts!
 

Scott1

Puritanboard Commissioner
I'm not familiar with the person or group you mention.

Are you talking about playing secular rock music at the church on Saturday night for a secular crowd? Or "contemporary" Christian music to a church crowd Saturday night? And how is the event being billed?
Are you doing any of this on the Lord's Day, or is it somehow being billed as worship on another day?
 

Gforce9

Puritan Board Junior
I'm not familiar with the person or group you mention.

Are you talking about playing secular rock music at the church on Saturday night for a secular crowd? Or "contemporary" Christian music to a church crowd Saturday night? And how is the event being billed?
Are you doing any of this on the Lord's Day, or is it somehow being billed as worship on another day?

A clarification: I haven't nor plan on participating in any of the above scenarios. Also, It would be the second and fourth options you posed above (a contemporary Christian band to a church crowd on a Saturday night; something billed as worship on another day) that I would be interested in discussing. In the case of the contemporary "professional" Christian musicians/music (the guys on the radio, mostly), their events are billed as concerts but usually have a specific time of "worship" some point during the concert.
Here is a specific example: Let's say I join a group as a guitarist next week. We play mostly CCM. In three months, we play a concert at a church on a Saturday night (or we become famous and the venue is a concert hall), billed as a concert. As with CCM, many of the songs speak about God. During said event, people close their eyes, raise their hands and whatever else may take place?!? Are we, as a group, guilty of violating the S.C./RPW?
 

Scott1

Puritanboard Commissioner
Okay, it appears we are not talking about entertaining on the sabbath, which does not comport with the holiness of day, nor with the biblical regulation of worship.
If this is Saturday night entertainment at the church to a mostly church crowd, there are several things to consider in line with biblical principles. It does involve the second commandment, but others as well.

First, if you are struggling with this in conscience for many reasons (e.g. could be a weakness, or causing others to stumble, or a conviction not to, etc.) don't do it.
In that case, abstain and trust God for something else.

If the event is billed as entertainment, not on the Lord's Day, I don't think you are violating the second commandment (which regulates worship) per se.

Now, it may be commercial, immature, shallow, even crass, a lot of other things, but you have to decide if you can have influence on making it wholesome and edifying, or want to abstain from the whole thing because of the pitfalls.

If you can take leadership and set some principles about how the event goes, it might be worth seeing what God will do.

Truly, two cents.
 

SolaScriptura

Puritanboard Brimstone
Greg - if you want to put on a concert on Saturday night... rock on! And if some find your music edifying... even better!
 

Gforce9

Puritan Board Junior
Greg - if you want to put on a concert on Saturday night... rock on! And if some find your music edifying... even better!

What I'm trying to get my mind around is where does the 2nd Commandment and RPW apply and where do they not apply or apply differently. Sunday morning is easy. Friday night, mixed crowd, music that could lead some/all to worship.....now things get tricky to discern. I'm just trying to sort it all out..The concert/band is a prop to help illustrate, though I would like to play again. To keep myself from trouble, I may have to resort to AC/DC riffs in the local pub :p ............

By the way, Ben....great Harry Crumb quote.......
 

Peairtach

Puritan Board Doctor
Some of us have long belonged to denminations where the RPW is held to, but it is not viewed as in contradiction to the RPW to sing or compose hymns or play the piano to a hymn or psalm, as long as such worship does not overthrow the RPW by dislodging the Psalms and sung praise from its proper place.

This soon happens when hymns and instrumental music are introduced into the stated services of the church. The psalms are replaced by hymns and instrumental music drowns out sung praise.

Before you know where you are God's Word in the singing of psalms has been relegated or eliminated, and instrumental music has taken on the status of a third sacrament.
 

Peairtach

Puritan Board Doctor
Greg
What I'm trying to get my mind around is where does the 2nd Commandment and RPW apply and where do they not apply or apply differently.

You'll get different views on this:

(a) Conceivably there are RPWers who believe it is always sinful to compose, sing, listen to(?), etc, hymns, and who believe it always sinful to play a musical instrument with a psalm or hymn, or to play a psalm or hymn tune on a musical instrument.

(b) There are others who don't take the above view but define such as not being "worship" of any kind, description or context. I don't know how easy it is to do that, or hold to that. Is it right to sing "Amazing Grace" as if it was a secular song or listen to Handel's Messiah on the CD player as if it didn't involve worship in some sense of the word.

(c) There are others who see a place for hymns and instruments in worship in certain contexts, but they must not be allowed to overthrow our biblical and Reformed worship, as has happened in the evangelical churches.

The Apostle put no great store by fancy church buildings and musical instruments, by not mentioning them as part of worship, so why should we?

On the other hand, the visual and aural augmentation of the worship of God at the time of the first temple, was not part of the law of Moses, and instruments are mentioned in the psalms.

So they may have a place at the periphery of our worship, but we should always be focussed as individuals and families and churches on the unaccompanied Psalms as the beating heart of our worship.
 
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