Jesus Isn’t Looking for Perfect Music (Or Musicians)

Several years ago I read the book Music Through the Eyes of Faith by Harold Best, and for me, it was one of those books that I couldn’t stop underlining, re-reading, and devouring.

In particular, I loved the point Harold made with respect to the ramifications of Jesus – as the perfect Son of God on earth – singing songs and hearing music written by sinners.

He wrote:

“Let’s concentrate on something that almost never comes to mind: the music that Jesus heard and made throughout his life – the music of the wedding feast, the dance, the street, and the synagogue. As it turns out, Jesus was not a composer but a carpenter. Thus he heard and used the music made by other, fallen creatures – the very ones he came to redeem.

The ramifications of this single fact are enormous. They assist in answering the questions as to whether music used by Christians can only be written by Christians and whether music written by non-Christians is somehow non-Christian. But for now, it is important to understand that even though we don’t know whether every piece of music Jesus used was written by people of faith, we can be sure that it was written by imperfect people, bound by the conditions of a fallen world and hampered by sinfulness and limitation.

So even though we do not know what musical perfection is, we do know that the perfect one could sing imperfect music created by fallen and imperfect people, while doing so completely to the glory of his heavenly Father.”
The Fall, Creativity, and Music Making, pgs. 18 and 19

Jesus sang imperfect music written by imperfect people when he walked the earth. This is good news for us!

So let’s not try to impress Jesus with our perfect music this Sunday. Let’s thank him for making our imperfect music and imperfect worship acceptable through his perfect sacrifice. What a Savior!

6 thoughts on “Jesus Isn’t Looking for Perfect Music (Or Musicians)”

  1. Thought provoking post. Thanks for sharing it!

    “So let’s not try to impress Jesus with our perfect music this Sunday.”

    I think we could take this a step further and make the claim that Jesus doesn’t really care about our music. Period. Think about the kind of music that would impress the second person of the Trinity? It wouldn’t be a straight 4/4 rock groove in G major, would it? That hardly impresses us, and we are human.

    If we are honest with ourselves, then we would recognize that often times we are trying to impress people with our church music. We want the visitors to be impressed enough that they come back, and the non-Christian impressed enough that they consider the claims of Christ. We want the members impressed enough with it that they stay. We all know that God cares more about our hearts than music, yet we seem to be fixated on the perfect musical performance. A fixation we would have a hard time proving through Scripture or church history, that matters to Him.

    The challenge for us is understand the reasons we personally are trying to impress the wrong people with what we do in any given worship service and set those aside to focus on what does matter.

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