Garden City Michigan church of Christ


The New Testament of Christ does not include instrumental music as a part of the worship of Christians.  They were used many times in the Old Testament (2 Chronicles 29:20-28; Psalm 150), but the New Testament is completely silent regarding them.  Singing and making melody in the heart is the only thing that is mentioned (Romans 15:9; 1 Corinthians 14:15; Ephesians 5:19; Colossians 3:16; Hebrews 2:12; James 5:13).  Since there are no passages in the New Testament authorizing mechanical instruments of music in worship, it is wrong and sinful to use them.  We cannot go beyond the things that are written and be pleasing to God (1 Corinthians 4:6; 2 John 9).  When we add the traditions and doctrines of men, our worship becomes vain (Matthew 15:9; Colossians 2:8).

The following quotations show that instrumental music was introduced by the Roman Catholic Church.  “Pope Vitalian is related to have first introduced organs into some of the churches of Western Europe, about 670...” (The American Cvclopedia Vol. 12, p. 688)  “In the Greek church the organ never came into use.  But after the eighth century it became more and more common in the Latin church; not, however without opposition from the side of the Monks... 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.” (Scaff-Herzog Encyclopedia Vol. 2, p. 280)  “Pope Vitalianus in 658 introduced the organ into the Roman churches to accompany the singers.” (London Encyclopedia Vol. 15, p. 280)

Consequently, the only authority for instruments of music in worship is the Roman Catholic Church.  Our denominational friends and neighbors no doubt do not realize they are blindly following the Catholic Church in this matter.  Christ alone is the head of his church (Colossians 1:18) and He alone has the right to state what should be done in worship.  Since His New Testament does not authorize mechanical instruments, they cannot be used.

What causes men today to choose an organ or piano as the instrument to be used?  Why not play a trumpet or a drum?  Most prefer the organ because it seems to them to be more suitable to the mood of worship, In other words, men have chosen the instrument they want purely on the basis of what best excites their physical emotions to a temperament they feel is better for worship.  The whole idea is based on what seems best to their own physical senses, personal desires and tastes.

The worship of the New Testament is a spiritual worship in which one pours out his soul in adoration and reverence to God.  It is not a carnal worship devised to please the physical senses of man.  Man does not have a right to choose what seems best or what pleases him in his worship to God.  God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24).

A television documentary on foreign countries showed a family that had a rotation wheel in their home which was used with praying.  Supposedly, when the wheel was spun, it sent the worshiper’s prayers up to God.  Actually, there is no difference in praying with a rotation wheel or singing with an instrument.  Both violate the principles of faith (2 Corinthians 5:7; Romans 10:17), make void the word of God (Mark 7:13), and reject Christ’s authority (Colossians 3:17).  We emphasize again, Christ alone is the head of His church (Ephesians 1:22-23; Colossians 1:18) and He alone has the right to state what should be done in worship.