There is strength and power in many things but few can equal the power of music. It can draw two hearts together in love or excite men to fight in war. One of the first to recognize and use that power was Israel’s King David, who, while a shepherd, developed his skill as a harpist and poet. Can you picture him in some fertile glade, sheep resting in the cool grass, and as the day draws to a close, singing and playing his harp? His sheep knew his voice and rested contentedly. King Saul, however, was neither resting nor content. The spirit of God had departed and an evil spirit troubled him. (I Sam.16) His servants went out to find someone who could soothe his agitation. “David took a harp, and played with his hand; so Saul was refreshed, and was well”. (v.23) After David became the king, “four thousand (Levites) praised the Lord with instruments I made, said David”. (I Chron. 23:5) The largest symphony orchestra of today is no more than 120 pieces. Imagine the sound and intensity of a 4000 piece orchestra. One of the most beautiful instruments of all is the human voice. Not only did David appoint musicians but also singers to sing praises to God. The Psalms are the lyrics of those songs of praise. Through the ages they have become an inspiration to millions as spoken words alone, yet even today they are sung in modern church settings. Nowhere is the power of singing a greater witness than the martyrs of the early church. Like Paul and Silas who, after being whipped and imprisoned, sang praises to God, condemned men like John Hus chose to sing while being burned at the stake, giving the ultimate witness of their faith. Eph. 5:18-19 exhorts us to “be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord”. The question remains, what kind of song does your heart sing? Selah.

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