He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the Lord; joy and gladness will be found in it, thanksgiving and the voice of melody. Isaiah 51:3.
The melody of praise is the atmosphere of heaven; and when heaven comes in touch with the earth, there is music and song—“thanksgiving and the voice of melody.”
Above the new-created earth, as it lay, fair and unblemished under the smile of God, “the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy.” So human hearts, in sympathy with heaven, have responded to God’s goodness in notes of praise. Many of the events of human history have been linked with sacred song.
The history of the songs of the Bible is full of suggestion as to the uses and benefits of music and song. Music is often perverted to serve purposes of evil, and it thus becomes one of the most alluring agencies of temptation. But rightly employed, it is a precious gift of God, designed to uplift the thoughts to high and noble themes, to inspire and elevate the soul. As the children of Israel, journeying through the wilderness, cheered their way by the music of sacred song, so God bids His children today gladden their pilgrim life. There are few means more effective for fixing His Word in the memory than repeating them in song. And such song has wonderful power. It has power to subdue rude and uncultivated natures, power to quicken thought and to awaken sympathy, to promote harmony of action, and to banish the gloom and foreboding that destroy courage and weaken effort.
It is one of the most effective means of impressing the heart with spiritual truth. How often to the soul hard-pressed and ready to despair, memory recalls some word of God’s—the long-forgotten burden of a childhood song—and temptations lose their power, and courage and gladness are imparted to other souls! …
Let there be singing in the home of songs that are sweet and pure, and there will be fewer words of censure, and more of cheerfulness and hope and joy. Let there be singing in the schools, and the pupils will be drawn closer to God, to their teachers, and to one another.
As a part of religious service, singing is as much an act of worship as is prayer.—Youth’s Instructor, March 29, 1904.