Q: I would like to know your views on praise & worship. Some people believe that only through the singing of praise & worship songs you worship the Lord. What about hymns? Are they already outdated? Can we not use them to worship the Lord, as well?
A: In the book of Ephesians, we read that we are to be filled with the Holy Spirit. The tense of this verb is such that it means being continually filled with the Holy Spirit. We read,
“And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord; always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God, even the Father” (Ephesians 5:18-20).
Notice that in this passage, it mentions hymns. In fact, Paul mentions different genres of praise and worship music in that passage, which he separates into the following categories:
3. spiritual songs
All of these constitute worship and/or praise music. Hymns are mentioned, and so we are encouraged in this passage to worship God using hymns and really any type of music that is worshipful and praise oriented. There is no limit, as long as it is glorifying to God!
Psalm 150 is a wonderful psalm that speaks of singing praises to God. I will close with this.
“Praise the LORD!
Praise God in His sanctuary;
Praise Him in His mighty expanse.
Praise Him for His mighty deeds;
Praise Him according to His excellent greatness.
Praise Him with trumpet sound;
Praise Him with harp and lyre.
Praise Him with timbrel and dancing;
Praise Him with stringed instruments and pipe.
Praise Him with loud cymbals;
Praise Him with resounding cymbals.
Let everything that has breath praise the LORD.
Praise the LORD!”