“I have no objection to instruments of music in our worship, provided they are neither seen nor heard.” — John Wesley, founder of Methodism, quoted in Adam Clarke’s Commentary, Vol. 4, p. 685.
“But were it even evident, which it is not, either from this or any other place in the sacred writings, that instruments of music were prescribed by divine authority under the law, could this be adduced with any semblance of reason, that they ought to be used in Christian worship? No; the whole spirit, soul, and genius of the Christian religion are against this; and those who know the Church of God best, and what constitutes its genuine spiritual state, know that these things have been introduced as a substitute for the life and power of religion; and that where they prevail most, there is least of the power of Christianity. Away with such portentous baubles from the worship of that infinite Spirit who requires His followers to worship Him in spirit and truth, for to no such worship are these instruments friendly.” –Adam Clarke (Methodist), Adam Clarke’s Commentary, Vol. II, pp. 690-691.
“I am an old man, and I here declare that I never knew them to be productive of any good in the worship of God, and have reason to believe that they are productive of much evil. Music as a science I esteem and admire, but instrumental music in the house of God I abominate and abhor. This is the abuse of music, and I here register my protest against all such corruption of the worship of the author of Christianity.” — Adam Clarke, Methodist.
“The organ in the worship Is the insignia of Baal…The Roman Catholics borrowed it from the Jews.” — Martin Luther, McClintock & Strong’s Encyclopedia, Volume VI, p. 762.
“Musical instruments in celebrating the praises of God would be no more suitable than the burning of incense, the lighting of lamps, and the restoration of the other shadows of the law. The Papists therefore, have foolishly borrowed, this, as well as many other things, from the Jews. Men who are fond of outward pomp may delight in that noise; but the simplicity which God recommends to us by the apostles is far more pleasing to him.” — John Calvin, Commentary on Psalm 33.
“Question 6. Is there any authority for instrumental music in the worship of God under the present dispensation? Answer. Not the least, only the singing of psalms and hymns and spiritual songs was appointed by the apostles; not a syllable is said in the New Testament in favor of instrumental music nor was it ever introduced into the Church until after the eighth century, after the Catholics had corrupted the simplicity of the gospel by their carnal inventions. It was not allowed in the Synagogues, the parish churches of the Jews, but was confined to the Temple service and was abolished with the rites of that dispensation.” — The Presbyterian Board of Publications, Questions on the Confession of Faith and Form of Government of The Presbyterian Church in the United States of America, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1842, p. 55.
“For years the Baptists fought the introduction of instrumental music into the churches…Installation of the organ brought serious difficulties in many churches.” — Wm. B. Posey, Baptist, The Baptist Church In The Lower Mississippi Valley.
“Apostasy in music among 19th century churches that had endeavored to restore New Testament authority in worship and work began, in the main, following the Civil War In 1868. Ben Franklin guessed that there were ten thousand congregations, and not over fifty had used an instrument in worship.” — Earl West, Search for the Ancient Order, Vol. 2, pp. 80, 81.
“Praise the Lord with the harp. Israel was at school, and used childish things to help her to learn; but in these days when Jesus gives us spiritual food, one can make melody without strings and pipes. We do not need them. They would hinder rather than help our praise. Sing unto him. This is the sweetest and best music. No instrument like the human voice.” (Commentary on Psalm 42:4) “David appears to have had a peculiarly tender remembrance of the singing of the pilgrims, and assuredly it is the most delightful part of worship and that which comes nearest to the adoration of heaven. What a degradation to supplant the intelligent song of the whole congregation by the theatrical prettiness of a quartet, bellows, and pipes! We might as well pray by machinery as praise by it” (Charles Spurgeon). Spurgeon preached to 20,000 people every Sunday for 20 years in the Metropolitan Baptist Tabernacle, and never were mechanical instruments of music used in his services. When asked why, he quoted 1st Corinthians 14:15. “I will pray with the spirit and I will pray with the understanding also; I will sing with the spirit, and I will sing with the understanding also.” He then declared: “I would as soon pray to God with machinery as to sing to God with machinery.” — Charles H. Spurgeon, Baptist.
“We have brought into our churches certain operatic and theatrical music; such a confused, disorderly chattering of some words as I hardly think was ever in any of the Grecian or Roman theatres. The church rings with the noise of trumpets, pipes, and dulcimers; and human voices strive to bear their part with them. Men run to church as to a theatre, to have their ears tickled.” — Erasmus, Commentary on I Cor. 14:19.
“The first organ certainly known to exist and be used in a church was put in the cathedral at Aix-la-chapel by the German emperor, Charlemagne, who came to the throne in 768AD. It met with great opposition among the Romanists, especially among the monks, and that it made its was but slowly into common use. So great was the opposition even as late as the 16th century that it would have been abolished by the council of Trent but for the influence of the Emperor Ferdinand-. In the Greek church the organ never came into use… The Reform church discarded it; and though the church of Basel very early introduced it, it was in other places admitted only sparingly and after long hesitation.” — Schaff-Herzogg Encyclopedia, Vol. 2, p. 1702.
“The custom of organ accompaniment did not become general among Protestants until the eighteenth century.” — The New Schaff-Herzogg Encyclopedia, 1953, Vol. 10, p. 257.
“If instrumental music was not part of early Christian worship, when did it become acceptable? Several reference works will help us see the progression of this practice among churches: “Pope Vitalian introduced an organ in the church in the seventh century to aid the singing but it was opposed and was removed.” — James Hasting, Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics.
“The Greek word ‘psallo’ is applied among the Greeks of modern times exclusively to sacred music, which in the Eastern Church has never been any other than vocal, instrumental music being unknown in that church, as it was in the primitive church.” — McClintock & Strong, Vol. 8, p. 739.
“Both sexes joined in singing, but instruments of every kind were prohibited for a long time.” — Thomas Tapper, Essentials of Music History, p. 34.
“Our church does not use musical instruments, as harps and psalteries, to praise God withal, that she may not seem to Judaize.” — Thomas Aquinas, Bingham’s Antiquities, Vol. 3, page 137.
“We have just received an extraordinary account of about 30,000 Methodists in England, withdrawing from that church and connexion, because the Conference disapproved of the introduction of instrumental music to the churches. The full account shall appear in our next. To us, backwoods Americans, this conduct of those seceders appears be the extreme of folly, and it argues that they have a greater taste for music, than they have for religion. Editor.” — Barton Stone, Christian Messenger, Vol. 3, No. 2, Dec. 1828, p. 48 in bound volume.
“We have no real knowledge of the exact character of the music which formed a part of the religious devotion of the first Christian congregations. It was, however, purely vocal.” — Frederic Louis Ritter, History of Music from the Christian Era to the Present Time, p. 28.
“Neither he [Paul] nor any other apostle, nor the Lord Jesus, nor any of the disciples for five hundred years, used instruments. This too, in the face of the fact that the Jews had used instruments in the days of their prosperity and that the Greeks and heathen nations all used them in their worship. They were dropped out with such emphasis that they were not taken up till the middle of the Dark Ages, and came in as part of the order of the Roman Catholic Church. It seems there cannot be doubt but that the use of instrumental music in connection with the worship of God, whether used as a part of the worship or as an attraction accompaniment, is unauthorized by God and violates the oft-repeated prohibition to add nothing to, take nothing from, the commandments of the Lord. It destroys the difference between the clean and the unclean, the holy and unholy, counts the blood of the Son of God unclean, and tramples under foot the authority of the Son of God. They have not been authorized by God or sanctified with the blood of his Son.” — David Lipscomb, Queries and Answers by David Lipscomb, pp. 226-227, and Gospel Advocate, 1899, pp. 376-377.
“If any one had told us, 40 years ago, that we would live to see the day where those professing to be Christians who claim the Holy Scriptures as their only rule of faith and practice, those under the command, and who profess to appreciate the meaning of the command to ‘observe whatsoever I have commanded you’ would bring instruments of music into a worshipping assembly and use it there in worship, we should have repelled the idea as an idle dream. But this only shows how little we knew of what men would do; or how little we saw of the power of the adversary to subvert the purest principles, to deceive the hearts of the simple, to undermine the very foundation of all piety, and turn the very worship of God itself into an attraction for the people of the world and entertainment, or amusement.” — Benjamin Franklin, Gospel Preacher, Vol 2, pp. 411, 419-429.
“There is no command in the New Testament, Greek or English, commanding the use of the instrument. Such a command would be entirely out of harmony with the New Testament.” — J.H. Garrison, Christian Church.
“While the Greek and Roman songs were metrical, the Christian psalms were antiphons, prayers, responses, etc., were unmetrical; and while the pagan melodies were always sung to an instrumental accompaniment, the church chant was exclusively vocal.” — Edward Dickinson, History of Music, p. 54.
“The early Christians refused to have anything to do with the instrumental music which they might have inherited from the ancient world.” — Theodore Finney, A History of Music, 1947, p. 43.
“So far as known to me, or I presume to you, I am the only ‘preacher’ in Kentucky of our brotherhood who has publicly advocated the propriety of employing instrumental music in some churches, and that the church of God in Midway is the only church that has yet made a decided effort to introduce it.” — L. L. Pinkerton, American Christian Review, 1860, as quoted by Cecil Willis in W. W. Otey: Contender for the Faith.
“Music in churches is as ancient as the apostles, but instrumental music not so: for it is now generally agreed by learned men, that the use of organs came into the church since the time of Thomas Aquinas, anno 1250” — Bingham, Joseph, 1865, The Antiquities of the Christian Church, London: Henry G. Bohn, p. 315).
“And if any man who is a preacher believes that the apostle teaches the use of instrumental music in the church by enjoining the singing of psalms, he is one of those smatters in Greek who can believe anything that he wishes to believe. When the wish is father to the thought, correct exegesis is like water on a duck’s back.” — J. W. McGarvey, Biblical Criticism, p. 116.
“Although Josephus tells of the wonderful effects produced in the Temple by the use of instruments of music, the first Christians were of too spiritual a fiber to substitute lifeless instruments for or to use them to accompany the human voice” — The Catholic Encyclopedia, p. 651.
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