"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord" (Colossians 3:16)
At First Family Church, we use music to help prepare our hearts before worshiping God through the preaching of His Word. We believe the Scripture when it says that we should do all things to the glory of the Lord (Colossians 3:17) and therefore, the praise team chooses music that will accomplish that end. The songs will be theologically correct, and rich with truth and praise of God for who He is and what He has done. We may sing classic hymns, or we may sing something contemporary as long as it meets those guidelines. Our praise band utilizes a number of different instruments from guitars to an organ and from time to time, we may also will use a choir.
The praise band is also served by, and serves with the sound booth ministry. The sound booth team controls the power point slides that contain the lyrics from the songs (so the congregation can join in singing since the music isn't about the performance - it's about joining in worship of our mighty God) and mixes the sound through a sound board.
Philosophy of Worshiping Through Music:
The worship team at FFC does not take the responsibility of leading the congregation into musical worship each week frivolously. We are committed to encourage each other, pray for each other and we hold each other accountable, confronting when necessary. We feel that it is an honor and a great blessing to be able to serve God and his people through this ministry.
Scripture is our main authority in coming to conclusions on musical worship. This ministry has also benefited form small groups studies concerning worship. Under the leadership of Barbara Farrar, the team completed the book WORSHIP The Ultimate Priority by John MacArthur. (FFC recommends this book as it will help to form a biblical theology of worship). A portion of this book provides opportunity to studyworship in the Old Testament. For God's people in the Old Testament and prior to Calvary, worship covered all of life, just as it does for us post Calvary. It was not just the music portion of a Sunday morning service. The tabernacle was in the center and everything faced toward it because that was where God's presence resided with his people. Seven chapters in Leviticus – 243 verses – are devoted to the description of the tabernacle, the center for worship. Only 31 verses in Genesis are devoted to the creation of the world. Also in the tabernacle, there were no seats. National Israel did not go to the tabernacle to sit and be entertained. They went there to worship and serve God. We learn from this example that true worship is agreeing with what God has done and said about himself and exalting him for it, not receiving from God.
In Leviticus chapter 10, Nadab and Abihu did not follow the precise instructions given by God to be done as priests in leading the people in worship. They were instantly killed. Saul also did not follow God’s instructions for worship and it cost him and his descendants the throne. Perhaps one of the most interesting stories in the OT regarding worship is found in 2nd Samuel 6. In this passage Uzzah, who had been trained all his life to protect the Ark of the Covenant, reached out to stop the Ark from falling off of the cart. He touched the Ark and “the anger of the LORD burned against Uzzah, and God struck him down there for his irreverence.” This particular story was very enlightening because a common misconception regarding worship is that worship is all about the heart. While the heart is an important part, it is not the only part. Uzzah’s heart was right. He was well intentioned in trying to protect the Ark; but, he still disobeyed God and his worship was unacceptable to God. Worship must be in spirit (with a right heart) and in truth (according to how God prescribes it in Scripture) to be acceptable to God (John 14:24). There is no question but that God takes the act of worship seriously and therefore, this ministry aspires to also. First and foremost, our priority is that our worship be acceptable to God, not to individuals. God, Himself is the instructor and dedsigner of how He will be worshiped, not us.
At FFC we believe in Sola Scriptura (and the rest of the Solas)–Scripture alone. This means that Scripture is sufficient to meet every need of the human soul. All essential spiritual truth is contained in the Word of God. In applying Sola Scriptura to worship, every lyric of every song must be in agreement with Scripture (2 Timothy 4:2). If the Bible does not teach it, our pastor’s can’t preach it, and we cannot sing it. The songs must edify the congregation (Eph. 4:12), honor the Lord (Hebrews 12:28), and place no confidence in the flesh (Phil. 3:3).
In summary, worship is giving honor and adoration to God. It must be done in spirit (with a right heart) and in truth (in accordance to Scripture). All of the music that we sing at FFC will be analyzed through that grid.
*adapted from Barbara Farrar's "philosophy on musical worship" who served in this ministry from 2010-2013.