keep us from just singing

This is the third part in a series of articles based on the Tim Hughes song God of Justice. This time I’m looking at the line “Keep us from just singing”.

“Away with your noisy hymns of praise!
I will not listen to the music of your harps.
Instead, I want to see a mighty flood of justice,
an endless river of righteous living.” Amos 5 v23-24

In the church today there are many new worship songs emerging. The Christian music industry is thriving. Huge worship events are happening all over the world. There is no shortage of worship going up to God. But does He care? Do you think he sits in Heaven with nothing better to do than listen to us sing “How great is our God”? I have a feeling his response is probably something along the lines of ‘Yeah, okay, now go feed the hungry. Help those suffering from HIV. End trade injustice’.

See if all we do is sing the songs and don’t do anything to actually live out the words we are singing, all we are doing is paying lip service to God, and it is totally worthless. God doesn’t want lip service praise. He wants your heart on fire for Him, and your hands serving Him through a life of worship. There is little point singing the songs on a Sunday if you deny the words in them by your life the other six days of the week.

I’m not saying singing isn’t important – it is. But I’m saying that worship in its current form, for many people, is a worthless façade. Singing shouldn’t been the main part of your worship – the rest of your life outside of the church building should be. If you sing that Jesus is Lord then you need to live it out. That means allowing Him to lead your life. It means giving Him control of every action.

True worship is described by God as “a mighty flood of justice, an endless river of righteous living”. If all we do as worship is sing songs there is no way we will produce a mighty flood of justice. But if we can see through the lie that worship is all about singing and realize that it is all about living out the biblical commands to “free those who are wrongly imprisoned; lighten the burden of those who work for you. Let the oppressed go free, and remove the chains that bind people. Share your food with the hungry, and give shelter to the homeless. Give clothes to those who need them, and do not hide from relatives who need your help.” Isaiah 58v6-7 then we just might. So let your prayer be that God would keep you from just singing, and would stir you into action.

Learn more the author of this post:

Pete McM
The original founder of All4God, Pete is 26, lives in Northern Ireland, is a junior doctor, Ulster fan and is passionate about Jesus