Monday, March 2, 2020

Do We Mean What We Sing

By Joe Slater

       My friend and brother, Tom Barton, made a shocking statement a few years ago at the Old Paths Men’s Retreat. “More lies are told while singing than at any other time!” I wish he had been wrong, but if you think about it, you see he was right on target.
       Tom was talking, of course, about Christians, not folks in the world. While worldlings may lie routinely about anything and everything, Christians at least try to be honest. But what about our singing? Do we mean what we sing?
       Brother Barton’s assigned topic was “We’ll Work ‘Til Jesus Comes.” Will we? Really? Some of us can’t drag ourselves to the assembly on anything like a regular basis; and Biblically, that’s not even work! What are the odds that we’re doing anything that could be styled even remotely as “work”?
       But that’s just one of many songs I ask whether we take seriously.  “If Jesus Goes With Me, I’ll Go Anywhere!” (As long as it’s within a few miles of all the rest of my family; and as long as it’s a place I like; and as long as . . .” [you get the picture]).
       “Lead me to some soul today!” But I don’t know my Bible well enough to teach that soul the gospel, so maybe that’s not such a good idea.
       “Make me a servant, Lord; make me like You!” But wait! People weren’t always kind to You; sometimes You suffered greatly while serving. Maybe I don’t want to be exactly like You!
       “All to Jesus I surrender!” Well, I surrender a little bit, anyway. I’m not an extremist, you know!
       If you don’t mean it, don’t sing it.

- Joe Slater serves as minister of the Church of Christ in Justin, TX. He may be contacted through the congregation's website:

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