May 17, 2017
This year I am enjoying THE ONE YEAR BOOK OF HYMNS. Each day features one song and gives a brief history of how it came to be written. I enjoy reading the background of some that I have known since childhood, as well as learning about new ones.
Yesterday, the feature was “Crown Him with Many Crowns.” It is a powerful reminder of “the Lamb of God Who takes away the sin of the world.” These words caught my attention: “Hark! How the heavenly anthem drowns all music but its own.” Apparently, the author, Matthew Bridges, who lived during the 1800’s, believed that heaven has its own music and that it drowns out all other music.
My first thought was a little harsh, because it focused on a certain amount of what is called “music” today. I look for ways to drown it out. Then I thought about songs that move me appropriately toward worship. And other music that reminds me of people and events of the past. Music connects generations and is a wonderful tool that uses our emotions to turn our attention to the Creator.
The “heavenly anthem” makes me wonder who presents it. Would this be a choir of angels? Or perhaps it is made up of great musicians of Planet Earth with perfected voices? Maybe even I could be a part of that choir that offers music to prompt worship of the One Who died for me.
The Bible talks about music – especially in the Psalms. It is connected with worship and celebration. It was part of Old Testament gatherings as well as the early church. Apostle Paul talked about “psalms and hymns and spiritual songs” (Ephesians 5:19).
Today, some people choose a local church based on the music it features. While I believe the first priority should be to know that the Bible is taught and Jesus is worshiped as God, I understand the significance of music and I relate to its importance. But today I am especially excited to think about the music of heaven that drowns out all the rest. I am looking forward to hearing that heavenly anthem.
Pastor Bill Ehmann