Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Re: [Covenanted Reformation] Calvin's Preface to the Psalter (EP)

Expand Messages
  • Whit Roberts
    ... Then what? ... Then I will follow Scripture, which is alone infallible. Whit
    Message 1 of 15 , Jan 1, 2006
    • 0 Attachment
      --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, gmw
      <raging.calvinist@v...> wrote:
      >
      > What if it's commanded by Scripture, but not affirmed by Calvin?
      Then what?
      >
      > gmw.
      >

      Then I will follow Scripture, which is alone infallible.

      Whit
    • Whit Roberts
      ... of ... I don t have a Scriptural warrant for you. Your exhortation is wise. I need to consider whom I am following regarding this area, and if I am
      Message 2 of 15 , Jan 1, 2006
      • 0 Attachment
        --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Edgar A. Ibarra
        Jr." <puritanpresbyterian@y...> wrote:
        >
        > Whit,
        >
        > Do the Scriptures allow for man-made hymns? If so where?
        >
        > Scripture, not man or men, are our ONLY rule for faith and pratice
        > (WSC #2, #3). If the Word of God allows it in the public worship
        of
        > God, then we can, if not, then we cannot.
        >
        >

        I don't have a Scriptural warrant for you.

        Your exhortation is wise. I need to consider whom I am following
        regarding this area, and if I am following man, then I need to
        repent.

        Whit
      • Don Nelson
        ... I am perplexed. It seems to me that if such hymns were included in the Scriptures, then that would make them inspired. There are many songs in the
        Message 3 of 15 , Jan 2, 2006
        • 0 Attachment
          > > Do the Scriptures allow for man-made hymns?

          I am perplexed. It seems to me that if such hymns were
          included in the Scriptures, then that would make them
          inspired. There are many songs in the Scriptures other
          than in the Book of Psalms, and singing is encouraged
          in places where specific content is not recorded.

          Consider an analogous situation: man-man speaking.
          Hours of sermons are included in our public worship. I
          do not understand how a comparatively few minutes of
          singing is such a problem. Logically then, the
          forbidden thing is the singing voice. Would it be OK
          to recite a hymn as long as we do not sing it?

          Don N



          __________________________________________________
          Do You Yahoo!?
          Tired of spam? Yahoo! Mail has the best spam protection around
          http://mail.yahoo.com
        • Whit Roberts
          ... What of the other inspired hymns in Scripture such as Mary s canticle and the inspired songs of Israel during the time preceding the Psalms? Whit
          Message 4 of 15 , Jan 2, 2006
          • 0 Attachment
            --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, Don Nelson
            <donstudybible@y...> wrote:
            >
            >
            > > > Do the Scriptures allow for man-made hymns?
            >
            > I am perplexed. It seems to me that if such hymns were
            > included in the Scriptures, then that would make them
            > inspired. There are many songs in the Scriptures other
            > than in the Book of Psalms, and singing is encouraged
            > in places where specific content is not recorded.
            >
            > Consider an analogous situation: man-man speaking.
            > Hours of sermons are included in our public worship. I
            > do not understand how a comparatively few minutes of
            > singing is such a problem. Logically then, the
            > forbidden thing is the singing voice. Would it be OK
            > to recite a hymn as long as we do not sing it?
            >
            > Don N
            >

            What of the other inspired hymns in Scripture such as Mary's
            canticle and the inspired songs of Israel during the time preceding
            the Psalms?

            Whit
          • Nikolai
            ... Whit, attempting to argue for EP position by showing that it is commanded by Scripture will always end in a failure. There s simply no such command in
            Message 5 of 15 , Jan 2, 2006
            • 0 Attachment
              Whit Roberts wrote:
              > I am open to an
              > explanation since if EP is affirmed by Calvin and commanded by
              > Scripture, then I am willing to go back to EP.

              Whit,
              attempting to argue for EP position by showing that it is commanded by
              Scripture will always end in a failure. There's simply no such command
              in Scripture. This, however, does not mean we are left in the dark as to
              what do we sing in worship. For example, one can easily show that psalms
              were used in worship and therefore we use them in worship too. The
              burden is then entirely on those wishing to sing something else to show
              on what basis, scripturally speaking, are we to accept their innovation.
              If they wish to add un-inspired hymns to worship singing, let them
              provide a scriptural warrant for it, else all such innovations are
              nothing but will-worship, a worship driven by imaginations of men rather
              than God's will.

              Nikolai
              EPC of Australia, Brisbane
            • Nikolai
              ... Don, to sing anything but the Psalms, you would need to show that what you are referring to as songs (in Scripture) was used in worship in the same way you
              Message 6 of 15 , Jan 2, 2006
              • 0 Attachment
                Don Nelson wrote:

                > I am perplexed. It seems to me that if such hymns were
                > included in the Scriptures, then that would make them
                > inspired. There are many songs in the Scriptures other
                > than in the Book of Psalms, and singing is encouraged
                > in places where specific content is not recorded.


                Don,
                to sing anything but the Psalms, you would need to show that what you
                are referring to as songs (in Scripture) was used in worship in the same
                way you intend to use these songs in worship. Similarly, if you intend
                to use un-inspired poetry in worship for singing, the burden once again
                is entirely on you to provide a scriptural warrant for such worship
                practice. It is no different if I were to propose to the session that in
                addition to Scripture reading on the Lord's day, we are to read a
                commentary, maybe some Christian poetry or even perhaps a newspaper. The
                burden would be entirely on me to scripturally justify my proposals. For
                reason one hardly can explain, there's a widespread belief in, as
                strange as it may appear, reformed churches that singing is exempt from
                the Regulative Principle of Worship. Maybe it is because singing is no
                longer important?


                > Consider an analogous situation: man-man speaking.
                > Hours of sermons are included in our public worship. I
                > do not understand how a comparatively few minutes of
                > singing is such a problem.

                I'm sure Nadab and Abihu didn't see any problem either offering a fire
                to the Lord "which he commanded them not" (Leviticus 10:1). Please note
                how such seemingly innocent offence was penalized by the Lord. Singing,
                considering how much effect it can have on our minds, seems to me much
                more serious matter than burning fire.



                > Logically then, the
                > forbidden thing is the singing voice. Would it be OK
                > to recite a hymn as long as we do not sing it?


                Don, if Regulative Principle of Worship has any meaning to you, then
                logically as well as scripturally the burden is on you to provide a
                warrant for singing or reciting poetry, prose or what not. We do have a
                warrant for psalm singing, we do have a warrant for reading of
                scripture, we do have a warrant for prayer as well for exposition and
                teaching of scripture. If someone wishes to stage drama, a rock concert
                or anything else they may fancy, let them provide a warrant. Until then,
                all we need to remember is "the acceptable way of worshiping the true
                God is instituted by himself, and so limited by his own revealed will,
                that he may not be worshiped according to the imaginations and devices
                of men, or the suggestions of Satan, under any visible representation,
                or any other way not prescribed in the Holy Scripture."

                It seems to me, the "not prescribed in the Holy Scripture" clause has
                little bearing on Christian minds in modern reformed churches all the
                while "the suggestions of Satan" have all the green light the evil one
                wants.

                Nikolai
                EPC of Australia, Brisbane
              • Edgar A. Ibarra Jr.
                ... Alas, the dilema for supporters of singing man-made hymns. They would not argue so anyways. If God allowed man to write their own songs to offer up as a
                Message 7 of 15 , Jan 2, 2006
                • 0 Attachment
                  >Don Nelson <donstudybible@y...> wrote:
                  >
                  >
                  > > > Do the Scriptures allow for man-made hymns?
                  >
                  > I am perplexed. It seems to me that if such hymns were
                  > included in the Scriptures, then that would make them
                  > inspired. There are many songs in the Scriptures other
                  > than in the Book of Psalms, and singing is encouraged
                  > in places where specific content is not recorded.

                  Alas, the dilema for supporters of singing man-made hymns. They
                  would not argue so anyways. If God allowed man to write their own
                  songs to offer up as a sacrifice of praise in the public worship of
                  God we would have some form of indication of that in the NT, but we
                  do not. Do not mis-understand me, I believe there are many
                  beautiful and wonderful hymns, my favorite was "Christ shall have
                  dominion" which is a parapharse of a Psalm. Now for those who would
                  argue that we can sing the song of Mary, for example, then that line
                  of argumentation is still not an argument in favor of man-made
                  hymns, but of inspired hymnody and you are still limited as to the
                  number of hymns outside of the Psalms. Many in Geneva did sing
                  other songs besides the Psalms, but they were INSPIRED hymns. The
                  counter to singing such hymns is this, were those hymns intended for
                  public worship or just an expression of the people overtaken by the
                  Holy Spirit and the work of God that was upon them? The Psalms were
                  meant for worship, but the "inspired hymns" were not. As for the
                  hymns before the Psalter, that was allowed as God was still
                  revealing Himself (i.e. progressive revelation was occuring) to man
                  and until He settled things, there was some liberty in certain
                  areas. HOWEVER, when the Psalter was completed, that was it, no
                  more were to be added, like the closing of the canon of Scripture.
                  We see the Song of Moses for example incorporated into the Psalter.

                  >
                  > Consider an analogous situation: man-man speaking.
                  > Hours of sermons are included in our public worship. I
                  > do not understand how a comparatively few minutes of
                  > singing is such a problem. Logically then, the
                  > forbidden thing is the singing voice. Would it be OK
                  > to recite a hymn as long as we do not sing it?

                  Now man-made sermons are allowed in the public worship of God as God
                  states that His ministers are to teach and instruct and open the
                  Word of God unto His people. That is part and parcel of the office
                  of the Teaching Elder or Pastor. Examples of this are replete in
                  the NT, especially in the book of Acts, starting in Ch. 2. It would
                  not be ok to recite hymns as a means to get around the prohibition,
                  that is dishonest at best and blasphemous at worse. The only
                  elements of worship that are allowed to be man-made are prayer and
                  sermons. Just like we would not read a chapter out of Calvin's
                  Institutes followed by a chapter out of the Bible, we cannot sing a
                  man-made hymn followed by a Psalm (now even one wants to get cute
                  and reverse the order it is still not acceptable).

                  Keep it simple and stick to the Word of God and all will be well.

                  >
                  > Don N

                  Thank you Don & Whit for your questions and I hope they are
                  helpful. Although my answer(s) are short and therefore may not
                  totally satisfy I hope they aid in some way. If you want to study
                  the issue more there are great resources on this subject on
                  www.truecovenanter.com and sermons by Pastor Greg L. Price via
                  sermonaudio.

                  Sola Scriptura,

                  Edgar Ibarra
                  Albany, NY
                  RPNA-Covenanter in belief & practice
                • Crazy Calvinist
                  Well as far as I can see, whether other songs from Scripture or the Psalms, the qualification for being able to write songs meant for worship was one had to
                  Message 8 of 15 , Jan 3, 2006
                  • 0 Attachment
                    Well as far as I can see,  whether other songs from Scripture or the Psalms, the qualification for being able to write songs meant for worship was one had to be a prophet. or prophetess. I don't think Charles Wesley qualifies.
                     
                    ~Deejay

                    "Edgar A. Ibarra Jr." <puritanpresbyterian@...> wrote:
                    >Alas, the dilema for supporters of singing man-made hymns.  They
                    would not argue so anyways.  If God allowed man to write their own
                    songs to offer up as a sacrifice of praise in the public worship of
                    God we would have some form of indication of that in the NT, but we
                    do not.  Do not mis-understand me, I believe there are many
                    beautiful and wonderful hymns, my favorite was "Christ shall have
                    dominion" which is a parapharse of a Psalm.  Now for those who would
                    argue that we can sing the song of Mary, for example, then that line
                    of argumentation is still not an argument in favor of man-made
                    hymns, but of inspired hymnody and you are still limited as to the
                    number of hymns outside of the Psalms.  Many in Geneva did sing
                    other songs besides the Psalms, but they were INSPIRED hymns.  The
                    counter to singing such hymns is this, were those hymns intended for
                    public worship or just an expression of the people overtaken by the
                    Holy Spirit and the work of God that was upon them?  The Psalms were
                    meant for worship, but the "inspired hymns" were not.  As for the
                    hymns before the Psalter, that was allowed as God was still
                    revealing Himself (i.e. progressive revelation was occuring) to man
                    and until He settled things, there was some liberty in certain
                    areas.  HOWEVER, when the Psalter was completed, that was it, no
                    more were to be added, like the closing of the canon of Scripture. 
                    We see the Song of Moses for example incorporated into the Psalter.

                    >


                    Yahoo! Cars NEW - sell your car and browse thousands of new and used cars online search now

                  • Nikolai
                    ... Psalms, the qualification for being able to write songs meant for worship was one had to be a prophet. or prophetess. I don t think Charles Wesley
                    Message 9 of 15 , Jan 3, 2006
                    • 0 Attachment
                      <crazy_calvinist@y...> wrote:


                      >>Well as far as I can see, whether other songs from Scripture or the
                      Psalms, the qualification for being able to write songs meant for
                      worship was one had to be a prophet. or prophetess. I don't think
                      Charles Wesley qualifies.<<


                      Deejay,
                      those wishing to sing Wesley's song deny there's such a requirement
                      and I agree with them, there's no such requirement found in Scripture.
                      Our position, IMO, rests entirely on the Regulative Principle (WCF
                      ch.XXI). Those who say they accept ch.XXI of the Confession as truly
                      reflecting scriptural view of worship and at the same engage in
                      un-scriptural worship practice such as hymn signing are either
                      confused or lying.

                      Nikolai
                      EPC od Australia, Brisbane
                    • gmw
                      I agree about the Regulative Principle of Worship, which of course is of great importance in the discussion of Exclusive Psalmody. However, I must agree with
                      Message 10 of 15 , Jan 3, 2006
                      • 0 Attachment
                        I agree about the Regulative Principle of Worship, which of course is
                        of great importance in the discussion of Exclusive Psalmody. However,
                        I must agree with Deejay about the significance that the "psalm,
                        hymns, and spiritual song" composers spoken of in Scripture are
                        specifically said to be prophets or prophetesses.

                        From Brian Schwertley's work on Psalmody:

                        "A careful examination of the Scripture passages which discuss the
                        songs used in worship and how worship songs were composed reveals that
                        God only authorizes and accepts divinely inspired songs for the praise
                        of Himself. 'If when the Bible speaks of the source of worship song,
                        it portrays the text as one produced by divine inspiration, then
                        inspiration is a biblical norm for this ordinance as well.'

                        "There are so many examples in the Bible which show the connection
                        between writing songs of praise for the church and prophetic
                        inspiration that it is astounding that this point has been largely
                        ignored by those who claim to hold to the regulative principle. There
                        is the example of the prophetess Miriam who, by divine inspiration,
                        composed a song to celebrate God’s deliverance of Israel from Egypt
                        (Ex. 15:20-21). We also have the inspired song of Deborah the
                        prophetess (Jdg. 5). There are the Spirit-inspired songs of the
                        prophet Isaiah (e.g. 5:1, 26:1 ff., etc.) as well as the divinely
                        inspired song of Mary (Lk. 1:46 ff.). If 1 Corinthians 14:26 refers to
                        Christians composing songs for public worship, these songs were 'as is
                        universally admitted, charismatic songs and therefore products of the
                        immediate inspiration of the Holy Spirit.' (The question of whether
                        the new covenant church should sing divinely inspired songs outside of
                        the book of Psalms is dealt with below.)

                        "The Old Testament saints whom God used to write the Psalter wrote by
                        the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Note once again that prophetic
                        inspiration and the writing of songs of praise go hand in hand. King
                        David, whom the Bible calls a prophet (2 Chr. 29:25-30), wrote his
                        songs by a special gift of the Holy Spirit (2 Sam. 23:1, 2; Ac. 1:16).
                        The New Testament repeatedly refers to David as a prophet when it
                        quotes his songs (cf. Mt. 22:43-44; Mk. 12:36; Ac. 1:16-17; 2:29-31;
                        4:24-25). The worship of the temple musicians and singers is referred
                        to as prophecy in Scripture (1 Chr. 25:1-7). This designation, when
                        applied to song content, obviously means that what they sang was the
                        product of divine inspiration. Thus, the temple musicians and singers
                        who were involved in writing songs for worship did so under the
                        special operation of the Spirit. Heman (who was appointed by David as
                        a worship leader of the sanctuary) is called a 'seer' (1 Chr. 25:5) in
                        Scripture; a term synonymous with the word 'prophet.' Bushell writes,
                        'Prophetic titles and roles are consistently attributed to the chief
                        temple musicians and singers. Asaph, for example, one of David’s
                        principle musicians (1 Chr. 6:39; 15:17; 16:5 ff.; 2 Chr. 5:12),
                        appointed by him over the service of song and by Solomon in the Temple
                        service, is also called a ‘seer’ and placed alongside David as far as
                        authority in Temple music is concerned (2 Chr. 29:30). Nor ought we to
                        miss the significance of the fact that some 12 of the Old Testament
                        Psalms (50, 73-83) are attributed to Asaph, thus confirming his role
                        as a writer of inspired worship song. Jeduthun, another chief temple
                        singer, is also called a "seer" (2 Chr. 35:15; cf. 25:1; and Pss. 39,
                        62, and 77 titles).' The writing of worship songs in the Old Testament
                        was so intimately connected with prophetic inspiration that 2 Kings
                        23:2 and 2 Chronicles 34:30 use the term 'Levite' and 'prophet'
                        interchangeably. The worship of Jehovah is so important that nothing
                        less than infallible Spirit-inspired lyrics are acceptable for praise
                        in the church."

                        -- see more on this subject, as well as the footnotes re: the
                        quotations, in point 5 of Chapter 2 at
                        http://www.reformed.com/pub/psalms.htm

                        gmw.

                        --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Nikolai"
                        <psalmos@s...> wrote:

                        >
                        > Deejay,
                        > those wishing to sing Wesley's song deny there's such a requirement
                        > and I agree with them, there's no such requirement found in Scripture.
                        > Our position, IMO, rests entirely on the Regulative Principle (WCF
                        > ch.XXI). Those who say they accept ch.XXI of the Confession as truly
                        > reflecting scriptural view of worship and at the same engage in
                        > un-scriptural worship practice such as hymn signing are either
                        > confused or lying.
                        >
                        > Nikolai
                        > EPC od Australia, Brisbane
                        >
                      • Nikolai
                        ... All I can gather from Mr. Schwertley s quote is that the songs recorded in scripture are inspired. Nobody disputes that or at least no Bible believing
                        Message 11 of 15 , Jan 4, 2006
                        • 0 Attachment
                          gmw wrote:

                          >>From Brian Schwertley's work on Psalmody:
                          >
                          > "A careful examination of the Scripture passages which discuss the
                          > songs used in worship and how worship songs were composed reveals that
                          > God only authorizes and accepts divinely inspired songs for the praise
                          > of Himself.


                          All I can gather from Mr. Schwertley's quote is that the songs recorded
                          in scripture are inspired. Nobody disputes that or at least no Bible
                          believing Christian does. The contention is not about whether or not the
                          songs in the Bible are inspired, the contention is about can we sing
                          uninspired songs in worship. I simply think insisting that Biblical song
                          writers were inspired prophets will not impress someone wishing to sing
                          hymns in worship. After all, we do listen to uninspired scripture
                          exposition and prayer every Lord's day. Analogically, there seems to be
                          nothing wrong with singing uninspired songs. The only way, in my
                          opinion, to actually defeat those wishing to sing uninspired songs is by
                          invoking the Regulative Principle, that is, *they* must, not us, to
                          produce a scriptural warrant for their practice. This is when the two
                          passages from Ephesians and Colossians are brought up but they are of no
                          help for them of course.

                          Obviously, with those denying the Regulative Principle altogether
                          different methods should be used but eventually, the goal is still to
                          show that God should not be worshiped according to imaginations of men
                          or suggestions of Satan no matter who we're speaking to, Reformed,
                          Baptists, Charismatics or whoever.

                          Nikolai
                          EPC of Australia, Brisbane
                        • gmw
                          Hi Nikolai, Some quick comments below: ... But the very quote you included in your response here says much more than simply songs recorded in Scripture are
                          Message 12 of 15 , Jan 4, 2006
                          • 0 Attachment
                            Hi Nikolai,

                            Some quick comments below:

                            Nikolai wrote:

                            > gmw wrote:
                            >
                            > >>From Brian Schwertley's work on Psalmody:
                            > >
                            > > "A careful examination of the Scripture passages which discuss the
                            > > songs used in worship and how worship songs were composed reveals that
                            > > God only authorizes and accepts divinely inspired songs for the praise
                            > > of Himself.
                            >
                            >
                            > All I can gather from Mr. Schwertley's quote is that the songs recorded
                            > in scripture are inspired.


                            But the very quote you included in your response here says much more
                            than simply "songs recorded in Scripture are inspired." It's saying
                            that the songs which God provides and accepts of, to be used in worship,
                            are inspired. And so, Scripture only gives warrant for the use of
                            inspired songs in worship.

                            > Nobody disputes that or at least no Bible
                            > believing Christian does.

                            No Bible believing Christian disputes what you said, but obviously not
                            all Christians believe what Schwertley was actually saying -- that
                            Scripture only gives warrant for the use of divinely inspired songs in
                            worship.

                            > The contention is not about whether or not the
                            > songs in the Bible are inspired, the contention is about can we sing
                            > uninspired songs in worship.

                            Yes, agreed, of course. I've surely not denied this.

                            > I simply think insisting that Biblical song
                            > writers were inspired prophets will not impress someone wishing to sing
                            > hymns in worship.

                            Someone wishing to sing hymns in worship (hymns here meaning uninspired
                            songs as opposed to the inspired hymns commonly called the Psalms) will
                            not likely be impressed with anything we insist! Someone wishing to
                            worship God biblically, however, may very well be impressed with the
                            nature of the songs used in worship given by inspired prophets and
                            prophetesses. Now, no one is "simply" insisting that our worship songs
                            must be inspired without also having an eye to the Regulative Principle
                            of Worship. What I'm saying is this:

                            Given the Regulative Principle of Worship, we must have Scriptural
                            warrant for our acts of worship. Scripture gives warrant for the use of
                            inspired songs in worship, which songs were delivered by inspired men
                            and women. Scripture gives warrant for no other type of song.
                            Therefore, we only have warrant from Scripture to sing inspired songs
                            delivered by inspired people, in worship.

                            How we come to limit those songs to the 150 Psalms, is, of course,
                            another (yet related) issue.

                            > After all, we do listen to uninspired scripture
                            > exposition and prayer every Lord's day.

                            Of course, and both uninspired (strictly speaking) preaching and prayer
                            have Scriptural warrant.

                            > The only way, in my
                            > opinion, to actually defeat those wishing to sing uninspired songs is by
                            > invoking the Regulative Principle, that is, *they* must, not us, to
                            > produce a scriptural warrant for their practice. This is when the two
                            > passages from Ephesians and Colossians are brought up but they are of no
                            > help for them of course.


                            And I agree with this. If you are understanding anything I'm saying to
                            disagree with your statement of yours, then either I'm being unclear, or
                            you are misunderstanding me, friend.

                            The issue is not that God commands us to /sing only divinely inspired
                            Psalms/, but that God /only commands us to sing divinely inspired
                            Psalms/. Given the Regulative Principle, this is enough to warrant
                            Psalmody, and nothing else.

                            Good'ay.
                            gmw.

                            >
                          Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.